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It’s a good problem to have to be forced to take a vacation.  That’s the situation I found myself in when I noticed my 200,000 United miles were going to expire at the end of the month.  I had to figure out where I wanted to go and fast.  I’ve always liked this whimsical type of travel.  So I kind of left it up to a spin of the globe to figure out where I was going.  I knew that United is notoriously bad about availability for reward bookings (that’s part of the reason I still have 200K miles sitting around from 5 years ago), so I decided to pick a few places and leave it up to United roulette to determine where I would actually end up on the dates I wanted to travel.  On the list were Burma, Egypt and Israel, Southeast Asia, Tibet, and India.

Right away Burma is out, no availability and getting a visa to Burma would have been interesting.  Next on the list was Southeast Asia, with a stop over somewhere.  First on the list of stop overs was Tokyo, but no dice there.  Next was Singapore, but that wasn’t happening.  Finally, Hong Kong … yeah Hong Kong would work, but … there were no non-stop flights with availability, so I’d have to go via Beijing.  Well I guess I wouldn’t mind getting a mainland China stamp on my passport so that works.  Now we needed to figure out where to end up in southeast Asia. I’d already been to Bangkok, so that was out.  How about Saigon? Yeah, that would work if I spent some more time in Hong Kong, so I added a few days there.  Now I just had to get back on the date I wanted. No problem right?  I’ll just get the flight back through Hong Kong, but no dice.  Somehow the receptionist found a route through Shanghai and Tokyo on various airlines, so I guess that’s how I’m getting home.  I now have a 6 leg flight to 2 destinations (I better get some good seats), but the outline of my trip is scheduled.

Once on the ground I’ll probably try to hit Angkor Wat in Cambodia, and maybe try to make it up to Luang Prabang in Laos because I’ve heard great things about it’s unspoiled beauty. I’d also really like to make it over to Hanoi and Ha Long Bay.  As you might have figured out I’m kind of a World Heritage Site junkie. The more research I do, the more I’m starting to realize that I need 3 months and not just 3 weeks to do all that I want to do here.  I guess I’ll just have to figure it out on the ground like I always do :) I’m excited for this trip to start, and I’ll plan on posting more about it as I travel.