3rd Leg – Dhaka

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After the luxury of Hong Kong it’s always a culture shock arriving in Dhaka. Bangladesh is the world’s eighth most populous country, with over 160 million inhabitants and Dhaka city ranked no 9 in terms of population density with 12 million residents. It’s also a desperately poor country, with 26% of the population living below the national poverty line of US $2.00 per day.

Clothing in Bangladesh is a $19 billion a year industry, second only to China as the worlds largest exporter of apparel to the western markets. The Bangladesh clothing industry has been under heavy scrutiny of late, with the Tazreen factory fire in 2012 killing 117 and the collapse of Rana Plaza in 2013 with a death toll of over 1,100. I’ve seen the good, the bad and the ugly over the 5 years I’ve been travelling to Dhaka. What isn’t often reported is the good factories stand up against any you’ll find globally, with modern spacious facilities and ethical, social & environmental practices that would shame some businesses in Europe.

What I love most about Bangladesh is the people, it’s an old cliche but despite the poverty and social issues they are some of the warmest, friendliest people I’ve met. Don’t ever get into a conversation about politics with a local though, or you can kiss goodbye to the rest of your evening…

 

 

2nd Leg – Hong Kong

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Flying into Hong Kong never gets old for me, especially arriving upstairs on a 747 old school style. love this plane and would rather fly on one of these than a modern aircraft any time, for me it epitomises the excitement and glamour of international travel like no other plane can. When I was a kid I always dreamed of one day sitting upstairs on a 747, some dreams do come true I guess.

Hong Kong is still my favourite city, after traveling here regularly for the last 5 years I’m starting to know it pretty well now. Like all global cities it just has a buzz about it that can’t fail to excite when you’re walking the streets, it’s really inspiring.

Excuse the crappy iPhone pics, but I’m over taking my DSLR on work trips, it’s just excess baggage and one more thing to lose or break…..

1st leg – Manchester – Dubai – Bangkok – Laos

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Left Manchester on the 13.55 Emirates flight to Dubai with a 3 hour stopover before a 6 hour flight to Bangkok. Usually enjoy flying, but with a serious case of man flu the trip was a bit of a nightmare with zero sleep on all legs of the journey.

I’ve connected through Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi international airport many times but never had reason to stay overnight in the city. As I couldn’t make my connection to Laos in time it left me with a night free in a central hotel to explore and a chance to catch the Liverpool/Chelsea game. What little I saw and experienced of Bangkok has certainly whetted my appetite to spend more time here, has a great vibe about it, so different to other places in Asia I visit.

Last buy – Adidas Adizero Primeknit 2

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I’m a big fan of the original Adidas Primeknit and bought a pair of the Olympic Primeknits on release back in 2012 (and never got around to posting it at the time so I’ll add it to this post) so was eager to try out V2, the AdiZero Primeknit 2.0 Torsion. None of the colour ways released to date tickled my fancy until this subtle white/grey dropped, think it works well rather than the more garish colours released so far.

Like the original Primeknit, the upper is knitted, though it looks like a denser knit so it doesn’t have the same ‘knitted’ look to it as V1 or the Nike FlyKnit, which I think is a shame. The looser knit on Nike’s Flyknit Racer is what makes it great in my opinion, if you use knitted technology then it needs to look knitted no? They’re really comfortable, being constructed from a one-piece textile upper and featuring ADIPRENE in the forefoot that helps to propel you forward, ADIPRENE heel cushioning and Torsion System midfoot support.

If I had to choose I prefer the original primeknit, developed for Adidas athletes to wear at the London 2012 Olympics and released as a limited edition run of 2012 pairs in a corene/white colour way (mine are number 1929). I also have a soft spot for them as I was involved in the sourcing & design of the London 2012 Olympic ambassadors uniforms (but not the colours I hasten to add) so that connection makes them a bit special in my eyes.SONY DSC SONY DSC DSC09385 DSC09386 DSC09387 DSC09389 DSC09388 DSC09390 DSC09393 DSC09392

 

 

Last Buy – Nike Flyknit Racer Multi

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Not really a last buy as such, got these on release day back in August last year in fact. I haven’t fiended after a new release for years, but got up early to ensure I grabbed a pair online. Glad my days of collecting and reselling kicks are well behind me, forgotten how frustrating it is, especially when, as was the case here, the release was put back a few hours due to too much traffic. How I enjoyed sitting by my laptop hitting F5 every couple of seconds waiting for them to drop on Nike store…. Worth it though, beauties that’ll see lots of action this summer

Last Buy – New Balance 996 Spring Bright Pack

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I’ve been after a pair of purple NB 996’s since pics were first released back in late 2012, but struggled to find a pair in my size until finding a pair in Hong Kong. Paid a little more that I’d have liked, but that’s HK for you.

They’re part of the ‘Spring Bright’ pack of 996’s that released in spring ’13. The royal blue and bright green hung around at retail for awhile, but the purple’s were like rocking horse shit to find in the UK. NB’s are always easy to wear, can’t go wrong with Scotchlite reflective branding, and the ENCAP cushioning in the sole makes them really light and comfortable. Like the last pic of Cabourn  rocking a pair, his look like an earlier release though.