Wednesday, February 3, 2016

"I felt like I was walking in his shoes" #Traveling in Asia with Fred's Diary 1981, Behind The Scenes with Robert Fear #RPBP #ASMSG #Memoir

Thank you for joining us as we go behind the scenes of Fred's Diary 1981, with the second edition of 

"Behind The Scenes".

Robert Fear takes us on his journey, as he travels in Asia taking daily notes in a diary. 
This authentic look into his dairy has been extended by going behind the scenes with Robert as he reveals himself to us each week with an original inside look.


After we posted last weeks segment of "Behind The Scenes", we received a message from one of our blog followers!
"I read last weeks segment of Behind The Scenes with Fred's Diary 1981 featuring 
Pre-Travel Jitters. I felt as if I was transported back in time. 
Although somethings seem like the everyday mundane things that we do, I felt like I was walking in his shoes! I was able to see what he was talking about, and feel how he must have felt before traveling in Asia. What a fascinating Time Capsule from the 80's"


Author Robert Fear

"A Day in Hong Kong"
"Time flies by"

written by Robert Fear


Brought To You
Rukia Publishing Book Promotions

Chungking Mansions
An inexpensive place to stay in Hong Hong

Time flies by 

It is already nearly four weeks since I left England and time is flying by. Those terrible pre-travel jitters started subsiding as soon as I got on that plane and the feeling of being far from home is now a distant memory. I am really starting to enjoy this adventure and looking forward to what the next few months hold. 

On the second day here I got a bed in a dormitory at the Travellers Hostel on the 16th floor of Chungking Mansions. I’ve been staying there ever since and am meeting a lot of fellow travellers as they pass through. It is great hearing everyone’s travel stories, as well as getting advice on places to visit and things to do. Travelling alone is all well and good but it’s always an uplifting experience mixing with like-minded people. 

I’ve done a lot of exploring around different areas of Hong Kong and it is a fascinating place. The contrasts are tremendous between the crowded streets of the city itself and the remoteness of the surrounding countryside. Most of the travel has been by tram, ferry and bus although I have also been on a train, the subway and a funicular up to The Peak where there are breath-taking views. 

My dream of getting a job at the bank came to nothing. I had hoped that having worked for their branch in Frankfurt that there might be a chance of working here for a few months. They only employ two expats though and it wasn’t possible. I must admit that I felt really down after the interview as I had built up the possibility so much in my own mind. Its’s probably all for the best though! 

I have been doing some work, as a film extra for Chinese TV. Along with a few of my other fellow travellers we have played background parts in several editions of a series called Hong Kong Gentlemen. As well as that I have been a Russian soldier and an interrogator. 

Some letters have arrived including two from Rita, my girlfriend from Germany. I knew she was very down when I left but the news does not sound good. One of her letters was really long and rambling. The other was a little more upbeat. She admitted there is something ‘wrong with her silly head’. It sounds like she has had some sort of breakdown. This news really upset me and I couldn’t help blaming myself for what is happening to her. 

I have started making plans to move on to Thailand within the next week or so. The idea is that I will fly into Bangkok and then get a train or bus up to Chiang Mai in the north. Three friends I met here, Sharon, Aja and Graham, are already there and I am looking forward to meeting up with them.

Tiger Balm Gardens, Hong Kong
The Hong Kong gardens have lost half their sculptures and structures.
Fortunately, what remains are some of the most unique features. The Tiger Pagoda, Aw Boon Haw's tomb, and the mountain honeycombed with caves all have been preserved. This watercolor was painted in the late 1940s.

A Day in Hong Kong

I didn't get to sleep until 2 a.m. this morning. Was restless and couldn't relax. When I did drop off I slept well and woke up at 9 a.m.

After a wash I got my laundry together and took it downstairs, before having breakfast. Left the hostel and headed to Tiger Balm gardens by ferry and a No.11 bus. Was there by 10:45 a.m.

Had a good look around. The gardens are interesting although there was not much grass around. The area was constructed by the brothers who made a fortune out of selling Tiger Balm ointments.

It is quite run down but at its height must have been magnificent. The whole thing was built on a hillside and consists of numerous steps, concrete monuments and pagodas, with lots of different scenes made with models of plaster on metal skeleton bases.

After wandering around I headed up some rotting steps into the hills behind the gardens where I sat in quiet. A while later I headed back through the gardens and down the hill to Wanchai.

To kill some time I took various buses and trams around Hong Kong visiting the Western Market and Happy Valley. Also found out about trips to Macau and decided it was too expensive and too much hassle to try and do the trip in one day. Besides that the weather has turned ropey again.

About 3 p.m. I picked up my Thai visa which was all fine. For a change I caught the subway back to Kowloon. The whole system is modern and the trains are built in England but I'm afraid I hit it at one of the problem times. The train was delayed for quarter of an hour.

Got back to the hostel, after picking up my laundry, had a shower and watched TV before getting some dinner at 6:30 p.m. Watched TV most of the evening and even bought a bottle of beer later on, my first since Saturday. Went to bed at 11:30 p.m. but was again restless and couldn't get to sleep until 1 a.m.

Fascinating time capsule from the 80’s



Have you ever wanted to read someone else’s diary? 

Would you like to experience travelling in Asia without leaving home? 

Then this book is for you. Fred’s Diary 1981 is a fascinating insight into a young man’s travels around Asia in the early 1980’s. This is a unique opportunity to delve into Fred's daily diary, which details the 158 days he spent travelling around Asia. Follow Fred throughout his extensive travels to Hong Kong, Thailand, India and Nepal. 

Appreciate the many friendships formed along the way with fellow-travellers. 

Relive the highs and lows that he experienced during this fascinating journey. 

Recognise the huge differences in technology, particularly communications. 

Become immersed in the different cultures, peoples and surroundings of Asia in the early 1980's. 

Understand more about the drug culture of the 1980's, especially in Thailand and Nepal. 

Learn from Fred's youthful mistakes, especially if your dream of travelling to Asia becomes a reality.

The price of Fred's Diary 1981: Travels in Asia has been dropped to £1.99 / $2.99 (was £2.99 / $3.99). 

Get your copy while this offer lasts:

You can find out more about author Robert Fear on Rukia Publishing's 
Meet the Author page:

Come back next week when we publish another original segment 
"Behind The Scenes"
Fred's Diary 1981
author Robert Fear

~The pictures provided in this blog post were not provided by Robert Fear, nor are we Rukia Publishing suggesting that these are an exact reflection of the places described in this book during the time periods described in the book.~

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