Today, we are traveling to Yuan Yang. Yuan Yang is a very small town in Yunnan province and the only way for us to get there is by bus. I’ve never travelled by bus in china before so this is a new experience. The bus ride to Yuan Yang is around 7 hours long. I did not realized how far Yuan Yang is and I did not realized how rural of a place Yuan Yang is. The ride to Yuan Yang was very interesting. The adventure began at the KunMing bus station.
Vicky and I were in the number 1 and number 2 seat in the big bus. On the way there, we went from the city of KunMing to the outskirts of civilization. On the way we saw all sort of development and lack of development.
As we get closer to Yuan Yang, the road are pretty bad and also we begin to enter mountain roads. I did not realized that Yuan Yang is broken up into two towns. The new town and the old town. The new town is more developed however there are not much to look at in the new town. The old town is less developed and is about a hour drive away in the mountain roads. Once we arrived at Yuan Yang our guide met us at the bus station, we grab our bags and headed toward our hotel. Our hotel is pretty much the only major building in town. It IS the best hotel in town or in the region. The room was clean, but a bit cold. There is a air conditioning unit with heater, but we are not allow to turn it on. The only thing that is there is a small electric pad that is on top of the mattress for you to lay on.
Shortly after our arrival, we drop off our bags and grab our camera, we went out to look for our first sun set. Oh … the reason why we are on this adventure is to take pictures of the beautiful rural southern China. Our guide took us to this secret location for pictures. He said to us, “the road condition is pretty bad, so we will be taking to little car to help us get around”. The little car is a 3 wheeler, similar to the three wheeler in Mr. Bean. The ride there was interesting.
Once we got to our destination, we immediately saw a water buffalo walking by with a farmer. We then walked down a small muddy trail to the terrace rice fields. The view was magnificent!!!
After our photo shoot, we travelled back to town and went to a small local restaurant for dinner. The food was decent and cheap. After dinner, at the town square there was a group of locals line dancing. Pretty neat!!!
So our plan tomorrow is to head toward our next location around 5 AM in the morning for sunrise photo taking. This will be an interesting morning tomorrow. More to come.
Today we travelled from Beijing to Kunming. This is my first time flying Air China and will probably be my last time. The flight was fine, the service was good except for the seat space. I was in a Boeing 757. However the seat spacing was so tight that the 3 hours flight was almost unbearable. I will probably never fly Air China again.
Once we got to Kunming. We got a cab and went to our hotel. After we checked in we went for lunch. I follow my number 1 rule of finding a decent place in an unfamiliar place. That rule is to always eat at a place where there are the most local people. We that said, as soon as we were on the street we found bunch of people carrying a little white lunch container, so we were off to find that food. It did not take long and we ended up in an alley and the food was from a travel agents staff cafeteria, and the place was packed. We bought food there. It was super cheap, and it was pretty good
My first day in Beijing. I am still majorly jet lagged. The air in Beijing is so bad that it did not help at all. Today was a very quite and uneventful day. Since today is Vicky’s birthday, I spend most of my time with her and her folks.
Check out the Amazing lunch we had.
I did go and check out an indoor ski place. I did not ski or snowboard but it was very interesting to see an indoor ski resort.
So it seems like in the last month I’ve spent alot of time in the airport, on an airplane, and just travelling all over the world. So for example, two weeks ago, I was in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. This past Thursday, I was in Princeton, New Jersey having a great time for work. Remember, I am working on Doctor House’s Hospital. Late Friday Night, I returned to Seattle, and Today (Sunday), I am currently in SFO waiting for my flight to Beijing. Yep… very very busy some business and some pleasure. The number of travel is really starting to catch up. So I know I still have alot of Mexico posts, that I have not updated yet, but I assure you they are coming. So let’s talk about my day today so far? My day started off super early. I took a cab from home to SeaTac airport, once checked in, I was able to spend some time at the United lounge. I thought the Delta lounge was bad, well, the united lounge was not any better, everything is very very basic. After an hour or so of waiting, I boarding my flight and headed toward SFO; The view in the morning right after take off was just amazing!!!
Once I’ve got to SFO, everything seems to be pretty routine, I went to check out the United Lounge in SFO as well, did you know there is a business class lounge and a first class lounge? I did not know that until I walked in to the wrong one. I wonder what is in the first class lounge. There was also this nice TV exhibit in the terminal in SFO. Very Interesting.
So this is the first time that I’ve ever take an international business class on a 747. I remember see the stairs going to the second floor of a 747 but I have never been there. This is my first experience of that.
My ticket, 14 is on the 2nd floor of the 747!!!!
Special entrance hall for business class passengers.
The steps up to 747 second floor. It is interesting, that first class is actually in the very tip of the plane on the first floor. I would have thought it would been isolated on 2nd floor, but it is not.
My seat. The video display is huge and the seat actually lay flat, which is pretty nice, but it is like sleeping on a hardwood bench for 6 hours, it is nice and flat but still not very comfortable.
However, once I borded my flight, we were quickly informed that there is a mechanical error and there will be some delay. After one hour, they kicked everyone off the flight, because they needed to “Reboot” the plane. I hope our flight wasn’t running Windows 95 or something similar.
After 2 and half hours later, and some terminal japanese food and another round at the lounge, we finally started to board the flight again. My flight to Beijing was 2.5 hours late.
Once on board, what’s interesting is that UA actually have the flight control communications linked up to their passenger entertainment system, so during take off and landing I was able to listen to the flight control provide directions to our flight. Flight UA 889. The Entertainment system is pretty nice, big screen, lot of movies. Very enjoyable.
This is our in-flight meal. Not too shabby, better than the Delta’s hot TV dinner but not as good as EVA air’s lamb ribs. humm…
So after a long day of flying and 2 movies later, I finally arrived in Beijing. Beijing air is as dirty as ever, I am sure it will take some time to get use to this.
Remember a time when you are not harassed as an airplane passenger by TSA agents at the airport security? Well, Yeah I do, it was before Sept. 11, 2001. Yesterday, I once again experienced that hassle free experience. So while going through security at the ATL airport, there is a special line for the “Pre Check”. I have forgotten that I have signed up for this a while back, but when I was going through the security, I got directed to this special line. As I was getting ready to strip down to my undies for security check, the TSA agent asks, “do you know about this line?”
I responded, “oh yeah, you take everything off and put it on the scanner and walk through in your undies”.
He responded, “No, just take off any metal objects and leave your jacket, belt, and shoes on. Also leave your computer in your bag”
I was shocked, and I followed his instructions and in 15 seconds I was through security and waiting for Vicky on the other side. This was such a good experience, that it gives me hope that we are slowly going back to normal!!!
So a long day of travel we finally made it to our rental home in PLAYACAR phase 2 in Playa Del Carmen. The flight over from Seattle to Atlanta was pretty good. Vicky got upgraded, as for me … I got to enjoy the wonderful economy class.
While in Atlanta airport, we went to our favorite Chicken place in the airport for lunch.
From there we met with Vicky’s friend Monica and flew in to Cancun airport. Originally, Delta was offering a 800 dollar voucher for anyone to volunteer. I was planning on doing so because I still have some work I need to finish up, and a night in ATL hotel will do wonders for my unfinished work. But at the last minute, the seats opened up because of some idiot trying to go into Mexico without a passport. Ok people, when you leave the country you need a Passport, it doesn’t matter if you have a green card or not, that is only for ingress not egress, Mexico could care less if you have a green card or not. Anyway, the guys and his girl friend flew from Denver to Atlanta, only to be send home by the gate agent, while all of their friends boarded the plane and headed toward Cancun. Sucks to be him.
Anyways, after a really short flight from ATL to Cancun, we arrived. As we walked out to find our rental car, there are alot of people trying to help us or trying to sell us something, I wasn’t very sure. We did find the Hertz shuttle and found the rental car place. Yes, I know, why are we renting a car you say? Well, I think it is just more convenient, and we are betting that it is pretty safe to be here with a rental car. Or at least we hope. Anyways, renting a car is very different in Mexico, since my car insurance doesn’t cover outside of the country, I have to buy the rental car’s insurance. The the super cheap rental car became 500+ dollars US for 1 week. When we finally got our car, it was such a cheap ass car that it is no comparison to anything in the US. I had a very hard time finding the defogger and the internal light for this look PoS car.
Driving at night in Mexico is interesting. Oh and this is the first time that I am driving outside of US, Canada doesn’t count. First of all, they don’t really have a free way system, they have a highway system, almost like State Highways in the US. What is surprising was the speed bumps on the highway. You can be driving around 70 km/s and all the sudden you see a weird sign (I was still trying to figure it out) and BOOM!!! Speed Bump or Speed Trench!!!
Luckily, I was able to get to Playa Del Carmen with a little help from my trusted iphone. I use an app called Galileo. It is an offline map app that let you create any offline map for free. This is a great travel app for anyone going outside of the US without data plan.
With the location mapped on Galileo, I was able to get us safely to our rental home with speaking very very very little Spanish.
All checked in … since this is considered an international flight, we get to hang out at the all new Delta Sky Club in the S terminal. All I have to say is they tried, but failed. The feel is a little bit European, but everything is super cheap. And of course, there are no good food in the club. Oh I miss the clubs in Asian countries. Oh … Almost time for our flight.
This past weekend, I rode my bike from Seattle to Portland for the GroupHealth’s Seattle to Portland Classic. All in all, it was 202 miles from UW Seattle to Portland. I took two days to get to Portland and many events happened, I will try to share my experience and hopefully, this will help future STP riders.
When my friends and I decided to do the STP, we decided early that 1 day STP would be way to crazy, that would be over 12 hours of riding at an incredible speed of 18 or 19 miles per hour. Since we did not want to do that, we decided to do a two day ride. Instead of a even break of around 100 miles the first day, and around 100 miles the second day, we decided to do around 150 miles to Longview, WA on the first day and around 50 miles to Portland.
DAY 1 – 150 Miles to Longview, WA
Day 1 started off really early, we decided to meet around 4:45 am, so I was up around 3:45 am to get ready and prepare. The night before I went to sleep pretty early, but I was very nervous and anxious about the ride. I have never done anything like this before, the longest ride I have ever done was 77 miles. This was going to be a challenge. When we got to UW, it was around 5:30 am and the sun was already peaking out, we started from the starting line at 5:45am.
After a short and fast 25 miles ride out of Seattle, we arrived at our first official rest stop.
Shortly after our first stop, we faced “the hill”. “The hill” suppose to be the largest climb of the day and of the ride, but we found out later that this doesn’t seem like the case. It maybe because it is still early in our ride, I was able to climb “the hill” without too much trouble at all. Shortly after the hill is the first series of rolling hills through Auburn, WA.
This is also when I got one of my first comments about my Auburn University Bicycle jersey. The comment was, “humm… it ironic that you are riding through Auburn with an Auburn jersey on.” Of course, my answer was, “that’s right!!! WAR EAGLE, BABY!”
On my 3rd rest stop of the STP ride, I came across an Alabama guy. He was wearing an Alabama jersey. “Oh”, I said to myself, “I’ve got to take a picture with that guy”.
100 miles later, we finally reached Centralia, WA, the mid-point of the ride. This was where most people stopped for the night, but my group decided to stop at Longview so we still have another 50 miles to go. When we first roll in to Centralia College, it was very welcoming. There are people giving out cream-sicles (ice cream on a stick) and lots of festival activity, but for us, we knew that we still have 50 miles to go, so we took a short break at a small turkey sandwich, fill our water and we were off again. Oh there are times that I wish that my first day ride just ended in Centralia, but I know that if that is the case I will hate myself on day two.
After Centralia was a series of rolling hills again, then there is the Napavine hill. I found this hill much tougher than “the hill”. Maybe because it is 100 miles later or maybe it is truly a bigger hill, but it was tough. There are no official stops from Centralia until few miles outside of Longview, WA. After leaving Centralia, I stopped at ever stop alone the way, Napavine, Winlock, Vader, and Castlerock. Along the way I got lost, took a wrong turn, but did end back on the trail, I also begin to have cramps on my calves, but with the help of banana and electrolytes, I was able to bike to Longview, WA. I remember really clearly the last few miles before Longview, I was mentally telling myself just few more miles to go, and comparing the distance to my distance to work. Around 5:30 pm I made it to the motel in Longview. After around 12 hours, I biked 150 miles. For dinner, we had some wonderful local Mexican food and shortly after that I fell asleep.
Day 2 – 52 miles to Portland
Day 2 started off pretty slow, we met up around 7:30 for breakfast at the local McD. Yep the breakfast of the champions right? Around 8:45, we departed from the motel and are on our way to Portland. Our estimated time of arrival will be around 12:30pm to 1 pm. Around 9:00 am, we biked across the Longview bridge into Oregon. Good-Bye Washington, Hello Oregon. I was feeling a be sore at first, but after 30 minutes or so, I am feeling great. After the bridge, the route follow along the river and it’s once again rolling hills. As I was going up one of the hills, I heard some one yell out, “Are you from Auburn?” I said yes, and we both yelled out “WAR EAGLE!!!” Our battle cry gave me an extra bit of juice and I pedal faster and stronger up the hill. During the first 15 miles to our first stop, I reached my all time high top speed of 40.5 miles per hour. It was amazing fast going down hill on my bike. Thinking back, it’s pretty crazy and I don’t know if I would do that again.
At our first stop of the day, we all felt really strong and did not stop long and we were on our way. As normal, Colin was the strongest and was gone shortly after we left the rest stop. I was slower than Colin, but faster than Brian. Shortly after we left the rest stop, we were all on our own following different pace lines. As I was around 1 mile out from small town of St. Helens, a group of bike in front of me slowed down all of the sudden. I grab my breaks and slowed down, and BAM!!!! Out of no where, I was slammed by another bike!!! I flew forward for about 3-4 seconds trying to regain my balance and fell on the pavements. I was on the ground trying to see if I am bleeding or now and then to check on what’s going on. I saw the other guy on the ground too. But he seems to be ok as well. While I was still in shock, all I remember is all the other STP riders yelling, “get the F*CK off the road!!!!” Yes, guys very very classy. and the fact is there is a minivan that stopped to help us and was actually blocking the bike land to protect us, they really do not need to be so rude. Amazingly, the Goldwing riders came by really quickly and check to make sure we are ok. Physically, I seem to be ok, my left arm is bang up, but I was ok, no major cuts, however, my bike was not so lucky. My new bike that I just bought one week ago is all messed up. The rear derailer was messed up, and one of the rear tire spoke was out of the hub and bent. There was no way I was able to ride on. My only hope was to get to a near by mechanic and maybe, maybe they have a new tire or something that can help me through my last 30 miles. The person that hit me was friendly, he was from Canada. When I told him of my bike situation, how my bike was stolen 1 week before STP and how I just bought this brand new bike, he agreed to pay for my repairs.
Since I was stuck here, I called Vicky and asked for a pick up. Vicky was about 1.5 hours away so we waited. The Canadian’s ride came about 1 hour later and agreed to drop me off at the nearest rest stop with a bike mechanic, which was only one miles away. When we got there, I wasn’t sure if they can help me. But amazingly enough, Ted from BikenHike, a bike shop from Portland, OR, was able to patch me up, adjust my derailer and sent me off to finish my last 30 miles. My derailer performed excellent, I could not tell that I had an accident. So, please visit them, BikenHike. if you need a bike and you are in Portland, they are great!!!
Ok, enough promotions, back to the story. I fill up my water bottle and continue my ride. At this time, my friends are already finished the ride and started on their beers and I was still 30 miles out. The unfortunate thing is that when my bike was fixed Vicky was only 5 minutes out and I told her that I am going to finish my ride. I felt bad for Vicky doing all that extra driving, but I do really appreciate her support and felt really loved to have someone to be there for me. I love you, Vicky!!!
The last 30 miles was pretty good, I did not stop at any more stops. When I finally reached the St. Johns Bridge, I knew I only have few more miles to go.
After the bridge, it was a slow ride across the north end of Portland and eventually ending up at the finish line. Right before the finish line, I saw Vicky waiting for me, I cheered for her, she tried to snap a picture of me and … well… she tried, I was riding too fast, I was too excited.
202 miles, a bent spoke, broken hub, brused arm, and 4 War Eagles later, I finished the 2011 Seattle to Portland Classic. An Auburn Tiger never quits!!!
Oh and the beers and the hamberger at the after party are the BEST EVER!!!!!
So will I do it again? Oh I don’t know yet… ask me in 8 month!!!
What would I change? I probably would train more, and change how I eat during my ride.
So this weekend, we attended Min-Jye’s wedding in Houston, TX. It was beautiful. Houston reminded so many things about my past. and it’s hard to believe it was almost 10 years ago that I lived in Houston. Yeah pretty amazing. Anyways, while we were there, we found out that the Houston Rodeo is going on. So we decided to attend the rodeo and check it out. Unfortunately, the rodeo tickets were all sold out, but we did get a general admissions ticket and check out some Mutton Bustin’.
So what is Mutton Bustin’ you say? Well, it is little kids riding sheep. Yep, sheep!! The kids are around 5-7 years old and don’t worry, they all have protective gears on, but it is a hoot to watch!!!
After watching it, I felt like it was almost as fun to watch as watching bull riding and the best part all the kids had a blast!!! I definitely will give my kids a chance to do that when they are at that age.
Take a look and tell me what you think!!!
So if you are in Houston, go take a look. You can get your rodeo tickets here!!!
So after a eventful day of travel and activities, I am finally in Auburn and resting in my room and on my bed. Ah~~~ it is good to be home!!! So let’s recap.
My day started at 2:30 when I woke up trying to get book on an earlier flight of 6:10 am to ATL by using the same day standby. After calling in 10 minutes early and then recall them 20 minutes late, I finally got my 6:10 flight confirmed. The road to the airport parking was not as bad as I thought. I was able to get to the parking deck pretty quickly. Once I checked in, it look me a while to get through airport security. But with my disappointment, I did not get close and personal with a TSA agent. Pretty much all the SeaTac Airport advance imagining machines were off. When I got to the gate, my upgraded ticket was already waiting for me. (oh I love airline status).
The flight was very uneventful at first, the free gogo onboard internet was nice. Thanks Google Chrome!!! When we finally got to ATL, we started to land and just before landing the airplane pulled up and started to increase power and pulling away. The captain then came on over the speaker stating that there was an alarm on one of the landing gears and we are going to circle around and try again. Ok, I was a bit nervous, but not really that nervous. Then just before the second approach and landing the captain says that the landing gears are down, but the door did not come back up because of the hydraulics so we maybe seeing sparks when we land. But he added, everything should be ok. Now I was a bit nervous. However, we landed successfully and immediately pull to a taxi land and stopped. We are waiting for the ground crew to verify that the landing gears are secure before moving the plane to the gate, this will prevent the airplane from collapsing on a bad landing gear.
After picking up my rental car, (and yes Hertz Gold is super awesome, no waiting and just pickup and go!!! Best of all no harassment from sells people like at Enterprise) I was on a hunt for some lunch, in particular Chick-fil-a. After 3 exits of finding all fast food restaurants are closed, I realized that yes, today is Thanksgiving. Doh!
After 3 hours of driving, I made it to Montgomery, Alabama and enjoyed my wonderful Thanksgiving lunch and then Dinner hotpot.
More adventures to come tomorrow with the Auburn vs Alabama Game!!!! WAR EAGLE!!!
Happy Thanksgiving everyone. 2010 has been an interesting year. There are many things I am thankful. I am thankful for Vicky, I am thankful for my family, I am thankful for my friends, I am thankful for my work, I am thankful for the successful purchase of my house, I am thankful for the surgeons in Beijing, I am thankful for the skillful Delta pilots, and I am thankful for everything in this interesting year.
if you ever bought a last minute flight, it is difficult to find a cheap airplane ticket with the time you want right?
But, if you are the type that is willing to gamble, then buy the cheapest ticket you can find of the day you want to fly and then try to fly same-day standby for the flight you want. You can save $50 to hundreds of dollars.
So this is the process that I took today and it worked for me, as I am writing this in First Class on a much earlier flight and I won’t be missing Thanksgiving dinner.
1) look online to see if there are a good number of available seats in the earlier flight. If there are only few seat available, then it may not be worth trying.
2) 3 hours before the new flight – anytime if you are Gold or higher. (This is for Delta, other airlines rules maybe different) I called 10 minutes before 3 hour window and they will not let me do anything, so call right at the 3 hour window to increase your chances.
3) If you are not Gold status or higher there is a $50 change fee (however, this maybe different for other airlines)
4) check in online immediately after the move. This will ensure your seat, and put you on standby for upgrade.
5) Drive to the airport and get on your new flight
It is that simple and for me it saved me over 100 dollars!!!
Well… as for my Thanksgiving adventure it is just starting.
Today was my last day in Macau, it is also my first day entering into China.
The day started off with some nice breakfast at the Hard Rock Hotel in Macau.
It was pretty interesting. Even though Macau is technically China, I still need to go through customs and immigration to go into China. Actually I had to do that when I entered Macau from HK. HK is technically China as well. I guess it is because of the SAR status. As soon as I cross the boarder, everything seems different. Simplified chinese verse traditional chinese.
Street of Zhu Hai.
The first thing we did after crossing the boarder is to go toward the seafood market. YUM!!!
No … I did not eat any of that sea worm. Yikes!!!
Yep my little sister is also in China to meet us
My little cousins.
Aunt and Uncle.
Mom and Dad
Now starts the cooked food section. So this is how it works, you go and pick out the sea food market, and take the sea food to the many restaurants near by and they will cook the sea food for you for a fee.
After lunch, we visited Zhu Hai and went on toward Zhong Shan.
Zhong Shan was the home of the Founding Father of the Republic of China. Dr. Sun Yet-Sen (Zhong Shan).
It has nothing to do with the site, but I thought the trash can looked cool.
Sun Yet-Sun’s Guava… the founding father guava
Surprising to find the ROC flag in PRC.
The 3 Principle of the People. It is inspired by Abe Lincoln’s “Government of the people, by the people, and for the people.”
Today is Day 2 in Macau, the day started off with a very normal breakfast with my father’s PhD advisor at the local Starbucks. Yeah, pretty funny huh… coming from Seattle, and I am in Macau having breakfast at Starbucks. But one thing they have that they don’t have in Seattle. Fresh Guava juice!!!
My morning sunrise from my hotel room.
The Macau Venetian!!!… just few weeks ago I was in the Las Vegas Venetian..
My Macau Starbuck breakfast, with fresh Starbuck guava juice!!!
After a full day of technical conference, we went to downtown Macau in the evening for a huge casino buffet. Afterward we went for some blackjack. The casino here in Macau is really interesting, first they can use 2 currency on the same table, HKD and Macau currency. The dealers were fast and sharp. Second, you can have side bets on the Blackjack table. I mean, you can watch a table and bet with someone else that is playing on the table. If he or she wins, then you win. Unfortunately, Today is not my day. I lost
There sure are alot of Pawn shops around the casino in downtown Macau.
Today was an interesting day. The trip started with a taxi right from the airport to the Ferry terminal. When my father and I got there, we had some breakfast at the ferry terminal. The breakfast was pretty good. After breakfast, we bought our ferry tickets to Macau, however, they only had first class tickets to Macau for the 10 am trip. We were able to get on standby on the 9 am ferry. We eventually got on to the 9am ferry. The ferry ride was very interesting. It was alot different for the Washington’s ferry system. Since we got the first class ticket, we thought it was going to be something amazing. Well, we found out that there was very little difference in the first class seats except for a soda and a cup of noodle. It was pretty funny, on the entire ferry, my dad and I were the only one with a soda and a cup of noodle soup. When we finally arrived, it was super hot!!! much hotter than Seattle. After a short bus ride, we arrived at Taipa and got to the conference area… and then that was when I realized my presentation segment has already started. They changed the time and I’ve missed that announcement. But the good news was that I was able to present and I was able to have some really good discussion with some excellent researchers around the world.
After a wonderful day of presentations, the conference’s banquet was amazing!!! Oh the food… take a look below!!! and I have to say the services here in Macau is just amazing. I’ve got to come back here sometime. After dinner, my dad and I hang out at the hotel lounge and listened to some really amazing chinese fusion jazz.
Check out the pictures below!!!
View from my Hong Kong Hotel
Another view from my Hong Kong Hotel
My first Taxi ride in Hong Kong. After all those HK movies, this short ride is all that I imagine it to be!!!
After a long day on the plane, I’ve finally arrived in Hong Kong. Met up with Dad, so I am staying at the Airport Hilton, very nice hotel, anyways, I need to get ready for tomorrow morning?s trip to Macau. Exciting!!!
After a 10 or so hour flight, I get few hours lay over in Japan. Nothing really special though. I did however found an open AP and start messing around with my iPhone and chatting with friends back home.
As you can see, I’ve got to have some of this nice Japanese layered cakes. YUM
I wish I have more time. I will definitely spend more time in Japan.
Today I started off my grand trip to Asia. 2010 has been an interesting year. Europe, New York, Las Vegas, and now Asia. My Asia trip starts with a conference in Macau. This is my first conference for a short paper of mine. The trip will start from Seattle with a brief stop in Japan then to Hong Kong. I will be in Hong Kong late tomorrow night. After that onward to Macau in the morning.