Monday, January 30, 2012

The Hairy Chef {guest post}

I met The Hairy Chef a few years ago on Australia Day through a friend of a friend. A big group of us played cricket, drank beer and listened to the Hottest 100... well they did the beer and cricketing, I just waddled around with my big pregnant belly pretending to be awesome in front of these young, funky people. The best part of the day though was all of us trying to reassure his vegetarian girlfriend that the bird boo that had just landed IN HER MOUTH did not mean she had jeopardized her morals.

So who is The Hairy Chef? Well, The Hairy Chef is a swimmer, a baker, a photographer, a writer, a teacher and really hairy. Originally from Perth, he is currently teaching English as a second language in Bogota, Colombia, drinking too much coffee and thoroughly enjoying the prevalence of anatomical augmentations in Latin America. Follow the (surgically enhanced) adventure at, but get your first taste of it right here, right now:

10 Reasons why The Green Grass is not all that green:
Traveling Is Never As Much Fun As It Should Be

1. Intestinal Parasites

No matter how hard you try, any extended period overseas will result in extended periods on the toilet and various moments at which you realise you might not make it there in time. Of course, when the toilet on the overnight bus doesn't work, and the only place to go is on the street behind the bus, you come to appreciate the luxuries of toilet paper and throne-style toilets. But when the bus driver pulls away while you're squatting in the street behind the bus, you come to appreciate the luxuries of stable bladders and solid stools.

2. Repacking your suitcase
Nobody likes packing. There's always too much stuff, there's never enough time. And you never use the things you packed in the time you didn't have.

3. THE Conversation
The Hairy Chef: Hi, where are you from?

Tourist: I'm from America. You?

THC: Perth.

T: Blink.

THC: In Australia.

T: Ooooh. Nice.

THC: Blink.

T: So. Where are you going?

THC: North. Via city A, place B and up to C.

T: Blink. Blink.

THC: You?

T: South. Via city D, place E and F.

THC: Sweeeeet.

T: Have you done G yet?

THC: Yeah.

T: It's like a total waste of time, huh?

THC: I loved it.

T: How much did you pay for it?

THC: $10.

T: Blink.

THC: You?

T: $350.

4. Not realising that you don't need to visit everything in the LP
You know that by the time you've spent 3 hours looking for the Automotive Historical Museum that it's high time you started looking for thrills in other places.

5. Not appreciating experiences because you're concentrating on taking the coolest Facebook profile pic to make your friends jealous
Nothing quite beats hiking 5 days up a mountain through snow and rain on 7 packets of instant noodles to get to the top so you can plank for your latest Facebook update.  
Planking on Mt Kilimanjaro
6. Eating rice and meat for weeks on end
When you don't know the local words for "I'd like a medium-rare steak served in a bath of jus-de-calf-milk" eating rice and potatoes for 3 weeks makes for a very long, and arduously constipated 3 weeks.

7. Ordering the chicken and getting the sheep's kidney
If you had paid attention in class, you would have avoided ordering a bowl of "vagina soup" in front of a group of nuns, or asking if you can "fuck the bus all the way to town".

8. The "helpful" local
"Yes the museum is three blocks from here. Yes it's open until 6." You arrive to find an stationery store that specialises in varieties of post-its, and is closed.

9. Breaking Cultural Customs
Learning the hard way that certain things in certain places equate to telling a parishioner what you'd like to do to his daughter.

10.Dealing with other travelers who NEED to tell you shit you don't want to know (my personal favourite)
"I left my ex-girlfriend behind. She was a whore. Now I'm here to sleep with married women because a witch told me it was my destiny." (Andre, The German)

Tell me your worst travel story... the grosser the better. 

Find The Hairy Chef on Facebook


  1. hilarious!  off to check out your blog Hairy.

  2. I once stayed at a hostel in Paris that didn't have pillows. I had to sleep with my head on my balled up jacket. But my friend's little sister got a worse deal. She found a homeless man in her hostel, in her sleeping bag!

  3. You have tempted me and I will pop over to your blog to live vicarously through you and your travels, oh hairy one!

  4. I was planning a trip overseas, but I just got scared. O_O

  5. Great post, I agree with most of this.
    I prefer slack-packing as it solves most of these problems, go somewhere that has WiFi somewhere, packing only minimal stuff and stay for a long while, get to know locals you like, avoid other travellers like the plague and don't see any of the touristy bits and don't take photos just buy a few postcards.

  6. I've not traveled enough to have a great story to tell, I'm hoping to explore a little more in my future & I'm not sure if this makes me more excited or has put me off! 

  7. Awesome post!

    This is my most embarrassing travelling story: my most awkward:

  8. The traveller conversation made me laugh out loud.

  9. Had the joy of a stomach bug in an isolated part of Vietnam and having to toss up whether my desperation for a rancid pit in the dark outweighed my fear of the dinner plate sized spiders that hung everywhere. Only time in my life I have managed to put aside my arachnophobia. Probably equalled by having to place the used loo paper in a box next to the communal loo in Hoi An. Lovely in a hot and humid climate. Or the power hose used to flush the squat loo in Indonesia that was so strong it sprayed me and the whole stall with refuse. Oh the many and varied tales I have of loos throughout Sth East Asia. ;)

  10. We were in America in a tiny town in a diner. The waitress could not understand me I think I repeated myself 9 times getting slower and slower until cracked it and wrote down a burger and fries and a diet coke, the same thing I had been ordering the whole time :S

    That's my worst I can think of ATM 

  11. You've just outlined ten reasons why I don't travel.

  12. I flew to the US wearing my Ugg boots, with no socks.  When I took them off on the plane, my travelling companions ordered me to put 'the stinking things back on'.  On a stopover in Hawaii I was tempted to throw them in the bin... but I couldn't bear to part with them so I wore them all the way to Denver.  I don't think my feet have ever been the same.

  13. My travelling experience only extends to Bali. I am guilty of spending way too much time taking pics instead of just enjoying the moment. Great post. The guy you're talking about in number 10 sounds hilarious!

  14. Talking with a cockney accent in some parts of Lincolnshire is almost exactly the same as telling someone you'd like to do their daughter. You only need to sal "Awright?" and they lock up their wives and run for their pitch-forks

  15. Ha!
    So when I travel I should stick to the English speaking countries.
    The food thing scares me. A lot. I don't want to make friends with the toilet!

  16. Well it depends - we took the approach that it was going to happen to us anyway and it did, and it wasn't so bad.  And the food thing, not knowing what to order...well it's one way of getting your thrills cheaply.  I think I've had a far greater number of disappointing meals in countries where I could speak the language. My girlfriend says a bonafide stomach bug is the best cure for the indulgent holiday bulge, I think I have to agree, although she also says that about kidney infections, so...make what you will of her advice.


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