Leaving from an Empty Airport

17 10 2015

My flight from Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei back to Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam was leaving around 12:30 pm on a Tuesday.  From my hotel to the airport was a smooth 15-minute or so ride with little traffic (as always I’m sure).  I arrived at the airport a little after 10:00 am, in ample time for my flight.

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Outside the terminal

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This seemed to have been it for the day as far as departing flights were concerned.

Empty hall

Empty hall

No line checking in

No line checking in

Spacious

Spacious

Going to gates

Going to gates

Passport control

Passport control

The hallway leading to gates

The hallway leading to gates

Mecca in the middle

Mecca time in the middle

Coffee before departure. Good 1.5 hours to kill.

Coffee before departure. Good couple of hours to kill.

Bye bye Brunei!





Random Bandar Seri Begawan

16 10 2015

Random random shots from the capital of Brunei

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To Supermarket! in Bandar Seri Begawan

15 10 2015

I LOVE going to supermarkets and I was happy to find a big one in a shopping complex in central Bandar Seri Begawan.

I’m not too inclined to take photos inside a supermarket (as such is generally not allowed in Japan) but the alley with different juices and milk drinks was impressively extensive, I just had to.

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I was curious about the tropical fruit juices, if they were good, as you can easily buy fruits fresh but I guess we all go for what’s convenient.





Two Faces of Brunei

14 10 2015

I say “two faces” because Brunei has the face of the British influenced west on one hand and that of a sultanate with strict rules on the other.  Because of the former, most people understand and speak English and I had no problem communicating anywhere.  The latter you feel in different places you visit and from the many regulations that seem to be in force including no littering (very clean and tidy everywhere unlike other Southeast Asian countries), no alcohol (that I knew before I went), and this or similar picture hanging everywhere.

Framed Hassanal Bolkiah and Raja Isteri, the absolute monarch and his wife respectively

Framed Hassanal Bolkiah and Raja Isteri, the absolute monarch and his wife respectively

And that's in a Starbucks-type coffee shop

And that’s in a Starbucks-type coffee shop

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Pricing is similar to what we get at home.

And they follow the somewhat American tradition of giving personal names when ordering /picking up coffee

And they follow the somewhat American tradition of giving names when ordering/picking up coffee. Never in Japan.

Apart from that, I thought roads of Bandar Seri Begawan just might look like a Japanese city as they also drive on left and all the cars look new.

New and shiny cars everywhere.

New and shiny cars everywhere.





To Night Market! in Bandar Seri Begawan

12 10 2015

The vibrant Pasar Gadong, the “night market”, of Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei, starts every night at around 7 pm.  There is fresh produce available just like in the “day market” but it seemed most locals were there to buy dinner to take home.  I arrived at the market shortly after 7 pm taking the shuttle bus offered by my hotel.

Food stalls everywhere

Food stalls everywhere

My dinner. Lamb

My dinner. Lamb

A lot of Japanese adaptations

Sweet things

More dinner for me from this guy.  Any four pieces for 1 Brunei Dollar, about US$0.71.

And the fresh produce section.








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