Saturday, December 06, 2008

Ha Long bay at dusk, Vietnam

Photo credit: taken by Vattana
Swallow the sun

Across the graceful dusky horizon
Waves are calm, birds are returning to their nests
The night is reclaiming the mountains and ocean
Mother nature seems to be at rest

The transition cycle is beginning
Shimmering water reflects the golden sky
As a farewell to the tranquil evening
She proudly appears in bright orange to say good-bye...

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Crocodile show, Koh Kong Safari World

I have to admit I was scared watching the fellows playing with their lives with these ferocious predators. Even the crocodile hunter on Discovery never dares to play with a crocodile this dangerously.

Still can't understand how these guys can mess around with these predators without hurting themselves. No matter what tricks they have, these are still wild animals with crushing jaws. Talking about dangerous job...And I'm sure there's no life insurance for them and their families either.

That was one heck of a show. My bow to you!

I prayed the crocodile wouldn't crush his skull every time he put his head in between its jaw
Crocodile show, Koh Kong

Wanna check what I had for dinner?
Crocodile show, Koh Kong

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Kitties at Koh Kong Safari World

It was amazing to see the bangle tigers up close: their elegant body stripes, their powerful paws that can take down a cow easily with one strike, their ferocious sharp fangs and eyes... What a beautiful predator!

These adults weigh probably 200-250 Kgs. The zoo keeper said they were captured from the jungle somewhere in Cambodia. Hopefully, their population is not dying out from human destruction.

Kitty you wanna check up my teeth, Doc?
Nice fangs

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Vietnam trip pictures

This year I also got a chance to visit my good old friend Chea in Hanoi, Vietnam. My other friend, Bo, also joined me on this trip. We began the trip by taking the bus from Phnom Penh to Ho Chi Minh city. Then from there, we flew to Hanoi.

Vietnam in many ways is like Cambodia but way more populous. We had a blast there. It was a good destination to add to my traveling experiences.

Picture sets: Hanoi, Ha Long, Kat Ba.

Saturday, November 08, 2008


My one month vacation in Cambodia was over too fast. Like they say, time flies when you're having fun. And I did have a wonderful time with my family and friends.

I enjoy seeing the changes every time I go back. For examples, the infrastructures are getting better which makes traveling easier. The country is booming. My nieces and nephews have all grown up and some are now in college which reminds me of how old I am getting :).

However, Phnom Penh traffic is a different story as the city is getting more crowded and the respects for traffic rules are still low.

One of the things I miss most about home is, not surprisingly, the FOOD. I often heard people made fun of me of how much I ate but I didn't care :). Everything was just delicious to me. As a result, I put on a few pounds after a month.

Eating Cambodian soup with family (Soup Chnang Dek).

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Incheon Airport again...

This time I have to wait for 11 hours to catch my flight back to Seattle. Thanks to the free internet with generous 22 inch LCD at Asiana Airline lounge which lets me kill times by catching up with emails, uploading pictures, updating blog and chatting. There is also a nice rest area next to the Internet Zone where you can relax/sleep/nap.

So here's the tip for those who will be stuck at Incheon Airport for a long while like me and want to kill some boredom and rest. Asiana lounge is probably a good place to go. Just make sure you don't miss your flight :)

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Incheon Airport, Seoul, Korea

After 12 hours of flight, I've finally arrived at Incheon airport in Seoul. The next flight to Phnom Penh got 15 minutes delay which isn't too bad. I have about 2 hours of waiting for my next flight to the final destination. Thanks to the airport's generosity for free Wi-Fi :), I can check emails and update the blog while waiting.

For my snack, I had Korean spicy ramen which was pretty good. It's past 2am Seattle time but I'm not feeling sleepy. 30 more minutes to go for boarding...

Ramen at Icheon Airport, Seoul

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Going home

In a few hours...Looking forward to see my folks there. Hope I have packed everything I needed :)


Monday, September 15, 2008

First attempt to shoot heaven

Light trail

Ahh...light pollution from the city is really a big obstacle to get a decent shot of the stars. The shot could have been better if it was in minimal light polluted regions like Cambodia where the stars glitter more and rule the night.

Coincidentally, making it a little more interesting, a plane was passing by leaving the light trails from its wings and body captured by the long exposure from the camera.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

Hiking Mount Si

Since it was a delightful sunny day yesterday, I decided to go hiking at Mount Si (pronounced as "Sigh"), about 45 minutes east of Seattle. The mountain looks moderately high, 4000 ft (1200 meters). The hike was 4 miles and took me two and a half hours. Haystack was the highest point but not everybody who made to the top went there because one had to scramble on the almost-vertical sharp-edge rocks. One misstep could end one's life.

I can spot the peak...
Mount Si

With extreme caution, I determined to scramble to the peak. It was worth the risk to get there and have a 360 degree view of the city and cascades. After eating lunch and enjoying the view for a couple of hours there, I hiked back down which took about an hour and a half.

Yay! I made it...
Seattle and Puget sound are far behind

The only way up to the peak.
Dangerous climb to the top

I'm glad I made it back in one piece.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

15-minute trip from Seattle

Because of water level differences between fresh water and sea water, Ballard Locks give the ships a way to cross from Lake Washington to the Puget Sound and vice versa.

It is also a place to witness the remarkable journey of salmons that swim upstream from the ocean (hundreds or thousands of miles away) to the lakes and rivers to spawn. After growing from eggs into young salmons, they instinctively go back to the ocean by reversely swimming through this canal and will come back to the same place to breed when they mature. The same process is repeated, known as the Salmon circle of life.

Hmmm favorite sushi. They sure don't look as good as they taste.
Salmons swimming to fresh water to spawn

View of Puget Sound at Discovery Park, when the sun is setting behind the Olympic mountains
Sunset at Puget Sound

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Road Trip to the Olympic

While everybody is cheering for the Olympic games in Beijing where the best of the best athletes from around the world are competing against each others and trying to beat the world records, I too am cheering my way to the Olympic - Olympic National Park, west of Seattle that is.

The trip begins with a cloudy morning but the sky on the west looks sunny and promising. An hour of driving later I reach the highway W16 accompanied by the tall pine trees and mountains. It is still mostly cloudy as I drive along the winding scenic road. But another hour later I arrive at Port Angeles where the sky is blue and the sun is brightly casting upon the town.

Unhurriedly, I decide to take a walk around the port before going to my final destination as I remember a saying; "It's the journey that matters, not the destination." Located on the Olympic peninsula, Port Angeles offers a terrific open view of the Pacific inlet to the North and the Olympic mountains to the South. I feel the cool ocean breeze as I stroll along the shimmering water front and looking across I could see Victoria island on Canadian side.

An hour later, I head for Hurricane Ridge at the Olympic National Park despite being warned by the Information Center that it might be too cloudy up there to see anything. It does look cloudy at high elevation but at least the clouds are not dark enough to produce rains. Having come this far, I can't be deterred by these clouds. Plus the elevation is probably high enough above the clouds that I can still enjoy the view up there.

After another hour drive climbing up on a serpentine scenic road, I finally reach Hurricane Ridge at 5400 ft. elevation. Up here it's not as bad as it looks from Port Angeles. It is less cloudy and I am actually as high as the cloud. Though I cannot see Port Angeles and the Pacific inlet down below, I can still have a breath-taking view of the Olympic mountain peaks covered with ice caps. It's still bright enough to hike along the meadow trails.

Hurricane Ridge

Soon after I park, I eat my lunch sandwich, drink good amount of water and hike up to the tallest hill around. Without enough sun and the wind, the weather is a bit chilly but calm. Along the trails are pine trees and beds of green grass and wild flowers mostly in purple, white and yellow. I encounter squirrels, birds, and deers as they are coming out to eat their dinner buffet on the rich meadows. The air is pristine and hiking through the white clouds at high elevation is really spiritually uplifting.

Dinner time, Hurricane Ridge

I'm busy

In sum, hiking at the Olympic National Park is as spectacular as the Americans unexpectedly beat the French in the 400 meter Free-style Swimming Relay tonight.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

My tools

These Canon lenses help me capture the beauties of natures, landscapes, objects and the living things around.

From left to right: 10-22mm, 28-135mm and the newly bought 70-200mm 2.8 L IS
10-22mm, 28-135mm, 70-200mm

Each lens is great at serving its specific shooting purpose. But the one I use most frequently is 28-135mm. It's a carry-around lens with good quality, my first good lens for my start-up photography. It has a good range of zoom serving multiple types of shooting. But most importantly, it has a sentimental value as it was a gift from my dad.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

One more shot with full moon wouldn't hurt

A plane just passing by under the illuminated moon, descending to Sea-Tac airport.
Full moon night

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Seattle - Take 2 with new lens

At sunset

At night a couple of hours later...
Night view from Queen Anne hill

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Happy Birthday US of A!


This year I have a chance to see July 4th fireworks up close at Lake Union. The presentation before the fireworks was spectacular. It started with a Chinook helicopter carrying the flag and circling around the lake. I've never seen a Chinook flying that close before.

Thursday, July 03, 2008


Concrete jungles light up the night
A crow is gliding through and lingering
Looking lost among the colorful lights
A flying crow keeps on searching...

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Magnuson Park

A beautiful (rain-free) sunny day in Seattle to spend at the Park with magnificent view of Lake Washington and Mount Rainier in the background.


Fins from US old nuclear submarines from the Cold War. Now they look like a pod of Orcas swimming in the Park.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

International friendly match - Brazil vs. Canada

5/31/08 - Seattle was hosting soccer friendly match between Brazil and Canada at Seahawk stadium. The atmosphere was electrifying as 47,000 fans, mostly in yellow Jerseys, came to watch. I was cheering for the underdog Canada with my Arsenal red and white Jersey :).


The stadium was shaken as the crow roared every time each team scored a goal. It was a close match over all. Each team played competitively with high energy and enthusiasm. The game ended with 3-2, victory on Brazil.

Robino was going for another goal.

A powerful shot from Canadian striker left no chance for the Goalie.

Yatch sailing on Puget Sounds


Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Friday, January 18, 2008

Snowboarding...first time

Finally I got a chance to try snowboarding, something I always wanted to do. My friend and I and his other 3 buddies went to Snoqualmie, only about an hour east from Seattle and right by I-90. The weather was beautiful and sunny, really perfect for snowboarding and skiing. We got there early to take advantage of less crowd in early morning. It really snowed a lot on the mountains. The temperature dropped as soon as we got there. The green pine trees, the white snow and the slopes of the big mountains made one heck of a scenery.

Since I don't have a waterproof coat, I had to borrow my friend's army waterproof jacket. Trying to look like a skateboarding pro hehe.
Snowboarding - first time

So here I went. After many fallings (a few hard ones) I managed to balance myself well and can slide like a leaf movement using thighs and hips. My friends said I did well for the first time. I was proud I didn't hurt myself so bad. I was ready for the higher slope after trying beginner's slope a couple of times. I saw some seniors, maybe at their 70, skied like a pro. That gave me inspiration :). I wanted to snowboard more until they closed but my body didn't let me. I got soared all over especially my thighs, my knees, my wrists and my butt :). I was worn out.

But it was worth it. It was a fun challenging experience. This was the first time but won't be the last. I will come back. I'm sure the pain will be worse tomorrow when I get up :).

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

View From Space Needle

You're not alone

Last Sunday was a rare day that we can finally see the sun. Mother nature decided to give us a break from the rains that have been sprinkling everyday for months. Ahh now I know why they call Seattle the city of rain! Sometimes it's unbearable. But I'm a survivor :) and I can survive this. If you can make it here, you can make it anywhere :).

So to take advantage of the sunny day and to celebrate my new contract employment with Microsoft, my friends, my cousin and I decided to come up to Seattle, have some Dim Sum and go to the Space Needle's 360 degree sky view deck. That means an opportunity to snap new pictures although a $16 ticket to get to the top each time is a ridiculous price.

Puget Sound to the West
Puget Sounds

Skyline and Mount Rainier to the South
View from Space Needle