A final day of Yurtastic fun in Mongolia

Date and Time: Early morning, 30th August 2007 Location: Bed 16, Carriage 1, sitting in the Russian border of Naushki. Carriage swarming with Russian officials. About 5 hours since the train pulled in just a few metres down the track on the Mongolian side, we’re still going through immigration procedures. Our passports have been taken […]

Where’s my train gone?!

Date and Time: Early morning, early Autumn Location: Bed 16, Carriage 1, Approximately 12 hours into a 40-hour journey from the Mongolian capital of Ulaanbaatar to the Russian city of Yakutsk. There is something mightily odd going on here! I’ve just woken up and stepped outside to have a look at this station where our […]

Speechless for three days in Mongolia

Date and Time: Early evening, early Autumn Location: Tradition Mongolian Yurt, somewhere in middle of Mongolia, 7 hours drive West of Ulaanbaatar Feeling: Dairyed out, but happy. Ulaanbaatar It’s nearing the end of Day 3 of our Yurt adventure. I wasn’t expecting us to still be here, the arrangement having been that we’d be returning […]

Live from the Yurt

Date and Time: Early morning, early Autumn Location: Tradition Mongolian Yurt, somewhere in middle of Mongolia, 7 hours drive West of Ulaanbaatar Feeling: Peaceful, despite sore bum It’s extraordinary what a powerful influence one’s surroundings have upon one’s rhythm. It’s only been 36 hours since we arrived at the collection of 4 yurts that is […]

Endless miles of stars

VITAL STATISTICS Date & Time: 25th August 2007, 10:10am Location: Train carriage next to remote village in central Mongolia, 1500km from Beijing. Feeling very happy. The train has stopped at some remote village – by ‘village’ I mean a group of 6 little widely-spaced homesteads, each consisting of a tin-roofed bungalow with up to three […]

Hello Mongolia

VITAL STATISTICS Date & Time: 24th August 2007, 10.13pm Carriage 8, bed 9, train to Ulanbaataar from China. Currently just inside Mongolia, Gobi Desert It was so funny when we were waiting to get through customs and immigration. As mentioned in my previous entry, I’d got to the station pretty early and so was first […]

Thoughts whilst waiting for the train

VITAL STATISTICS Date & Time: 24th August 2007, 2pm Location: entrance lobby of station, Chinese border town of Erlian, the Gobi Desert Time until next train: 4 hours I don’t really need to be here this early – check-in for the international train doesn’t start for another hour – but I’ve had a look round […]

Doing Business in China

VITAL STATISTICS Date & Time: 24th August 2007, 12pm Location: The hotel Hutiejuhengnuobinguan, Chinese border town of Erlian, the Gobi Desert Time until next train: 6 hours Length of next train journey (to the Mongolian capital, Ulanbaataar): 17 hours Hello. I’m sitting at my desk in my hotel room, just getting into the mood for […]

The hotel Hutiejuhengnuobinguan

VITAL STATISTICS Date & Time: 23rd August 2007, 10.30pm Location: The hotel Hutiejuhengnuobinguan, Chinese border town of Erlian, the Gobi Desert Distance travelled from Beijing: 842km Time until next train: 20 hours I don’t really get what the architect was thinking when he was designing the bathroom in my large, clean and fairly modern hotel […]

Beijing Duck

VITAL STATISTICS Time: Mid-morning, 23rd August 2007Location: On the local train heading north towards the Gobi Desert from Jining.Thoughts: Hmm, now I understand why the windows are sealed shut – if they weren’t the train would turn into a moving sand pit! The landscape is pretty flat in these parts. Long thin strips of crops […]

Stranded in Jining

VITAL STATISTICS Time: 06:30, Thursday 23rd of August 2007 (This means nothing to me. Time in the manmade sense lots its relevance last week) (This could be why I keep on missing trains…) Location: ‘Characterful’ lodgings, city of Jining, 498km north-west of Beijing, China Moments of sheer wowness in last 24 hours: too many to […]

The Forbidden City and Great Wall of China

With just two days in Beijing before my journey continued West, I was up early Sunday to go and meet the Emperor for tea in the Forbidden City. Having seen the film The last Emperor, I was pretty sure I’d recognise him when I saw him. I mean, judging by that film there weren’t all […]

Arrival in Beijing

It was dark by the time I pulled in at Beijing Station. What a madhouse that place is! Image a tin of sardines, then take away the oil, turn the sardines into people, multiply them by 4,785 and add a string of fairy lights – then you’ve got Beijing Station. I’d been given the address […]

Bullet Train from Shanghai to Beijing

VITAL STATISTICS Location: Car 1, seat 53 of bullet train from Shanghai to Beijing, 3 hours into a 10 hour 800+ mile train ride north. Currently somewhere north of Nanjing.Number of times the chap next to me has fallen asleep on my shoulder: 1 (has been asleep in that position since) My first impression of […]

Shanghai – Day 2

Day two was another scorcher. I set off fairly early to YuYuan Gardens, located just a few blocks West of the hostel. Dating back to the 1600s, these Ming Dynasty gardens contain over 30 halls and pavilions, as well as a huge rockery that forms a labyrinth of tunnels and caves. It was whilst sitting […]

Shanghai – Day 1

It seems TameGoesWild has been deemed unsuitable for The People: I can’t access anything on the TameGoesWild network! I wonder whether I should be proud of this fact or just annoyed! Must be the references to horses. Hurrah for a Blogger interface I say! Once again, apologies if the images don’t display correctly; I have […]

Voyage to Shanghai

This post was written on Wednesday 15th August 2007, 21:47 JSTApologies if the images do not display correctly – TGW is being blocked by the people in power in this country, thus I’m not entirely sure I’ve picked the right ones off Flickr! Voyage to Shanghai VITAL STATISTICS Location: Dining room on the Shanghai-bound ferry, […]

Video 05: The lights of Shanghai

A video I took a couple of hours ago on the waterfront here in Shanghai Once again, my apologies for the lack of professionalism in these videos – I’ll work on my technique! The thing is, it’s all been so chaotic!! Tags: Shanghai | waterfront | night | lights | China | trans-siberian | The […]

The videos that slipped through the Chinese net!

So whilst Flickr and FTP are blocked, YouTube seems to be working… here’s a couple of vids. Apologies in advance for “Moving the camera too much”. I hope to improve my video skills over the next few weeks! Video 1: Tokyo Station Video 2: Osaka Port Tags: video | Osaka | Tokyo | port | […]

Welcome to China

And a warm welcome it is too. I must have sweated at least 12 buckets today! Anyhow, I have actually written a great blog entry all about my fantastic 44-hour crossing to Shanghai – but for some reason I can't connect to my server via FTP, and both Flickr and Blogger seem to be partially […]

T minus 10 hours and counting

Yep, just 10 hours until my ferry departs from Osaka Port. I’m now staying in the Umeda Dormitory, which I stayed in for one night 2 years ago. It’s in a pretty convenient location, and has very friendly owners; for these reasons I recommended it to my coursemate Simon who arrived in Japan a month […]


I said bye-bye to *Twinkle* last night. As we won’t be seeing her again for a while, I thought we’d have a Daily Mumble *Twinkle* Fest. Tags: *Twinkle* | The Daily Mumble

The Journey Begins

According to the publicity campaign, my 14,000km trip starts on the 14th, but actually, that's just the day i leave Japan. The trip actually began two hours ago, at the little station of Shinden, 30 mins north of Tokyo station. We've decided to take the local train to Osaka whichtake 10 hours and 10 changes […]

Last entry from Tokyo

Well folks, this is it. *Twinkle* and I moved out of Viva Kami Itabashi this afternoon, after about 15 hours of packing and cleaning. I was shocked by how much stuff we have acquired over the past year, although I’m happy to say that there’s very little in the way of junk. We bought quite […]

Episode 11 – Sayonara Japan, or should that be "Mata ne!"

In the last show of series one of A Year in Japan, Joseph brings you up to date with the hectic final month of his Year in Japan as a university student. Hear the story about how a drunken hair cut almost cost him his Fuji TV Drama debut, in which he stars alongside the […]

This life business just gets better and better

This life business, I love it. Will tell you all the news about my forthcoming Fuji TV debut with Takako Tokiwa very soon. [Who is Takako Tokiwa? Wikipedia | WaiWai | Fuji TV] In the meantime, here’s a shot of some happy dancers in the park. Tags: fuji tv | takako tokiwa | park | […]

We become what we think about: The Haircut

This haircut was not consciously planned, it just happened. Click on the image below for a 2-page comic telling the story of what happened last night. When mulling it over this morning, and being pleasured by the feel of steam from my miso soup brushing past my kopf, it suddenly struck me, “Hang on, didn’t […]