Monthly Archives: February 2010

Japan and her culture

Japanese Assignment

Geographical Setting

Japan is an island country in the North Pacific Ocean. It lies off the northeast coast of mainland Asia and faces Russia,Korea, and China. Four large islands and thousands of smaller ones make up Japan. The four major islands-Hokkaido,Honshu,Kyushu and Shikoku form a curve that extends for about 1,900 kilometres.


Japan is a land of great natural beauty. mountains and hills cover about 70% of the country. IN fact, Japanese islands consist of the rugged upper part of a great mountain range that rises from the floor of the North Pacific Ocean. Jagged peaks, rocky gorges, and thundering mountain waterfalls provide some of the country’s most spectacular scenery. Thick forests thrive on mountansides, adding to the scenic beauty of the Japanese islands. Forests cover about 68% of the country’s land.

Japan lies on an extremely unstable part of the earth’s crust. As a result, the land is constantly shifting. This shifting causes two of Japan’s most striking features – earthquakes and volcanoes. The Japanese islands have about 1500 earthquakes a year.

Most of them are minor tremors that cause little damage, but severe earthqaukes occur every few years. Underseaquakes sometimes cause huge, destructive tidal waves, called tsunami, along Japan’s Pacific coast. The Japanese islands have more than 150 major volcanoes. Over 60 of these volcanoes are active.

Numerous short, swift rivers cross Japan’s rugged surface. most of the rivers are too shallow and steep to be navigated. Their waters are used to irrigate farmland, and their rapids and falls supply power for hydroelectric plants. Many lakes nestle among the Japanese mountains. Some lie in the craters of extinct volcanoes. A large number of hot springs gush from the ground throughout the country.

The Japanese islands have a total land area of about 337,708 sqkm. The islands , in order of size, are Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu and Shikoku. The sea of Japan washes the country’s west coast and the Pacific ocean lies to the east.


Regional climates in Japan can be compared to those of the East Coast of the United States. Kyushu and Shikoku have a climate much like that of Perth. They have long hot summers and mild winters. The island Honshu’s generally has warm,humid summers.

Winters are mild in the south and cold and snowy in the north. Honshu has balmy, sunny autumns and springs. Hokkaido has cool summers and cold winters much like Tasmania.

Two Pacific Ocean currents–the Japan Current and the Oyashio Current–influence Japan’s climate. The warm, dark-blue Japan Current flows northward along the country’s south coast and along the east coast as far north as Tokyo. The Japan current has a warming effect on the climate of theses regions. The cold Oyashio Current flows southward along the east coasts of Hokkaido and northern Honshu, cooling these areas.

Seasonal winds called monsoons also affect Japan’s climate. In winter, monsoons from the northwest bring cold air to northern Japan. These winds, which gather moisture as they cross the Sea of Japan, deposit heavy snows on the country’s northwest coast.

During the summer, monsoons blow from the southeast , carrying warm, moist air from the pacific ocean. Summer monsoons cause hot, humid weather in central and southern Japan.

Rain is abundant through most of Japan. All the areas of the country–except eastern Hokkaido–recieve at least 100 centimetres of rain yearly. Japan has two major rainy seasons–from mid-June to early July and from September to October. Several typhoons strike the country each year, mainly in late summer and early Autumn. The heavy rains and violent winds of these storms often do great damage to houses and crops


The Extended Family

Family life has always been important in Japan. Before 1945, many Japanese lived in large family units that included grandparents, parents, children, and sometimes uncles and their families. Japanese families were bound together by a strict set of customs.

Husbands had complete authority over their wives, and children were expected to show unquestioning obedience to their parents.

Marriage and Courtship-When a child was old enough to marry, the parents selected a suitable marraige partner. In some cases, the bride and groom had never met before the wedding.

The Nuclear Family

Today most of the Japanese live in the style of a nuclear family. These consist of only parents and children. The Japanese still have strong family ties and a deep respect for authority. But since WW2 relationships with families have become a little less formal, and more democratic.

Marriage and Courtship-Most young people now select their own marraige partners on the basis of shared interests and mutual attraction.

Parental Roles

The parents still sometimes decide the marraige partner for their child to marry.

Female and Male roles


Role in Society

Japanese law requires children to complete six years of elementary school, and three years of junior high school. Education at public schools is free during these nine years for children aged from 6 through 14 years of age. Almost all Japanese children complete the education requirments. Completing these compulsory years of schooling gives children the basic knowledge in a wide range of areas to succeed in adult life.

Further education builds on this basic knowledge to prepare people for more intellectual jobs.

Primary Education

Japanese elementary and junior high school students study such subjects as art, homemaking, the japanese language, mathematics, moral education, music, physical education, science and social studies. In addition, many junior high school students study English or another foreign language. Students spend much time learning to read and write japanese because the language is so difficult.

Secondary Education

Senior high school runs for three years. To enter senior high school the students must pass an entrance examination. Classes include many of the same subjects studied in junior high school. Senior schools also offer courses to prepare students for college or to train them for jobs. About 95% of junior high school leavers go to senior high school.

Higher Education

Japan has about 460 Universities and about 600 junior and technical colleges. The largest University is Nihon (Japan) University in Tokyo, which has about 80, 000 students. The country has 90 National Universities, which are supported by the government. Some of these universities–such as the University of Tokyo and the University of Kyoto–have exceptionally high reputations. Highly regarded private universities include Doshisha University in Kyoto and Keio University and Waseda University in Tokyo Senior high school graduates who want to attend a college or university must pass the entrance examination given by the school of their choice. Large numbers of students compete for admission to the top Japanese universities. About 38% of senior high school graduates go to an institution of higher learning.

Political System

Political Structure

Japan’s parliment, makes the country’s laws. it consists of two houses. The house of Representatives has 511 members. They are elected to four-year terms from electoral districts. The House of Councillors has 252 members. Half the councillors are elected every three years to six-year terms. Of the councillors, 100 are elected from the country as a whole, and 152 are chosen from 47 political divisions called prefectures.

Political Parties

Japan has several political parties. The most successful is the Liberal-Democratic Party (LDP), a conservative party which has more seats in the Government than any other since 1955. In 1993, a coallition of other important parties was formed to oppose the LDP. The largest members of the coallition include the Social Democratic Party of Japan, the Japan Renewal Party, the Komeito (Clean Government Party), and the Japan New Party.

Stability of Government

Although the Government itself is stable, within the parties there is much disruption and complaint

Role of Local Government

The municipalities have fairly broad powers; they control public education and may levy taxes.

Legal System

Organisation of judiciary system

The Japanese judicial system is entirely separate from and independent of the executive authority. Except for reasons of health, judges may be removed only by public impeachment. The highest court in the nation is the Supreme Court, established by the constitution and consisting of a chief justice appointed by the emperor upon the recommendation of the cabinet and 14 associate justices appointed by the cabinet. Four types of lower courts are prescribed by the constitution: high courts, district courts, family courts, and summary courts. The Supreme Court is the tribunal of final appeal in all civil and criminal cases and has authority to decide on the constitutionality of any act of the legislature or executive. High courts hear appeals in civil and criminal cases from lower courts. District courts have both appellate and original jurisdiction. Family and summary courts are exclusively courts of first instance.

Type of Law

The Japanese do not have a law as such, the citizens have codes to abide by.

Social Organisations

Group Behaviour

The Japanese in general are very polite and well mannered people.

Race, ethnicity and subcultures

There are may Chinese in Japan as well as Koreans. The original race of Japan are the Inu people.

Religon and Asthetics

Religon and other belief systems

As below

Relationship with the people

Just about every single person is a Shinto and three quarters of people are also buddhists. This shows that religon is very important to their everyday life.

Which religons are prominent

Buddhism and Shinto are the two most prominent religons in Japan by a long way.

Membership of each religon

Most Japanese observe both Shinto and Buddhist rites so the percentages add to more than 100%






Visual Arts

The major Japanese visual arts are Sculpture and painting.


Traditional Japanese music may sound thin compared with the rich harmonies of Western music. Most forms of Japanese music feature one instrument or voice or a group of instruments that follows the same melodic line instead of blending in harmony.

Japanese instruments include the lutelike biwa; the zitherlike koto; and the three stringed banjolike samisen, or shamisen. Traditional music also features drums, flutes, and gongs. Performances of traditional music draw large crowds in Japan. Most types of Western music are also popular. Many Japanese cities have their own proffesional symphony orchestras that specialize in Western music Drama, Ballet and other performing Arts.

The oldest form of traditional Japanese performing arts is a type of drama called the ‘no play’, which developed in the 1300’s. ‘No plays’ are serious treatments of history and legend. Masked actors perform the story with carefully controlled gestures and movements. A chorus chants most of the important lines in the play.

Two other forms of traditional Japanese drama, the puppet theater and the kabuki play, developed during the late 1600’s. In the puppet theater, a narrator recites the story, which is acted out by large, lifelike puppets. The puppet handlers work silently on stage in view of the audience. Kabuki plays are melodramatic representations of historical or domestic events. Kabuki features colourful costumes and makeup, spectacular scenery, and a lively and exaggerated style.

The traditional types of theater remain popular in Japan. The people also enjoy new dramas by Japanese playwrights, as well as Western plays.


The Tale of Genji, a long novel written in the 1000’s is generally considered the greatest work of Japanese fiction.

Living Conditions

Diet and Nutrition, Meat and Vegetable Consumption and Foods availible

The main food of the japanese people is rice. It is served at almost every meal.

Fish provides the chief source of protein in the Japanese diet.. Favourite Japanese snacks include various kinds of noodles in broth and yakitori, charcoal-grilled pieces of poultry on a skewer.

Soybeans are another major source of protein in the Japanese diet. The Japanese also eat a wide variety of fruits and varieties of seaweed.

The Japanese would eat a lot more vegetables than meat because meat is incredibly expensive.

Typical meals

A popular Japanese dish called sushi consists of rice flavoured with vinegar and topped with raw fish, sliced vegetables, shellfish, foods wrapped in seeweed and other ingredients. Other traditional dishes include sukiyaki (beef cooked with vegetables) and tempura (fish and vegetables fried in batter)


Types of Houses availible

There are two major types of housing availible in Japan, modern apartment buildings and traditional Japanese houses.

Renters or Home Owners

Due to short supply of land for sale, most Japanese can not afford to buy land for a house and therefore a large number, especially in the crowded cities rent apartments.


National Dress

The kimono

Types of clothing worn at work

The types of clothing worn to work are just the same as in the western world. Men wear suits with smart ties and women wear conservative tailored attire


Types and Demand

The Japanese people enjoy a wide variety of sports, hobbies, and other leisure time activities. Their favourite spectator sports are baseball and sumo wrestling. other popular sports include bowling, golf, ice skating, skiing, table tennis, tennis and volleyball. Many Japanese practice aikido, judo, and karate. Kendo is also popular.

Japanese also enjoy fishing, hunting, jogging and mountain climbing.

Percentage of Income spent on leisure activities

The Japanese would probably spend around % of their income on leisure activities.

Social Security and Health Care

In the early 1990s about 18 percent of the annual national budget was allocated for social security purposes. A medical insurance system has been in effect in Japan since 1927. Self-employed people and employees in the private and public sectors are included under the medical plan.

Social welfare services have greatly expanded since World War II; legislation enacted or amended in the postwar years includes the Livelihood Security Law for Needy Persons, the Law for the Welfare of Disabled Persons, the National Health Insurance Law, the Welfare Pension Insurance Law, Old Age Welfare Law, and the Maternal and Child Welfare Law. The entire population is covered by various insurance systems.

Most working people once retired at the age of 55, but an increasing life expectancy and government encouragement has extended the average age of retirement to 65.

Health conditions are generally excellent. In the mid-1990s life expectancy at birth was 76 years for men and 82 years for women; the infant mortality rate was a very low 4.3 per 1000 live births. Japan has about 211,800 physicians and 1.7 million hospital beds.


Official Language

The official language of Japan is Japanese.

Spoken Versus written language

Spoken Japanese is much easier than written japanese to master. Written Japanese consists katakana, hiragana and thousands of chinese symbols called ‘Kanji’.

Considering how hard these characters are to remember, especially the chinese ones, its no wonder people can speak more than they can write.


Japan comprises numerous mountainous islands, and this geography limited contact between the Japanese peoples living in different regions of the country. As a result, people in the various regions of Japan developed differing varieties, or dialects, of the Japanese language. Japanese has also developed separate varieties of the language for use in different social contexts; these varieties are called social styles of speech.

A large number of dialects are spoken throughout Japan’s four main islands (Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku, and Kyushu), as well as on the smaller islands, such as the Ryukyu Islands. Some dialects-for instance, those spoken in the southern parts of Japan, notably on the islands of Kyushu and Okinawa-are virtually incomprehensible to the speakers of other dialects. As a result of this diversity of dialects, the Japanese use a standard, or common, dialect to facilitate communication throughout the country. The two dialect families with the largest number of speakers are the dialect spoken in and around Tokyo, which is the common dialect, and the dialects of the Kansai region in western Japan, spoken in cities such as Kyoto, Osaka, and Kobe. Due to the spread of the common dialect through television and radio, most people outside the Tokyo region speak the common dialect as well as a local dialect.


World Book Encyclopedia (Cd Rom)

Grolier Encyclopedia (Cd Rom)

Encarta 96 Encyclopedia (Cd Rom)

JETRO (Internet Site)

CIA World Factbook (Internet Site)

Rose Bay Point Piper Marina Redevelopment: An unbiased report analyzing the current redevelopment application for what will become the largest floating marina in Australia

In November 2006, Addenbrooke Pty Limited, a company which deals with private developments lodged an application to redevelop the Rose Bay and Point Piper Marinas. The proposal is under review by Woollahra Council and has divided the local community. Both sides are providing strong arguments and campaigning intensely by creating petitions, distributing pamphlets, displaying banners and holding meetings.

The redevelopment would turn the marinas into the largest in Sydney. The developers want to add another 107 fixed berths for boats to park and moor, and remove 105 of the 120 swing moorings. The fixed berth area will increase from 4500 square metres to 44000 square metres. A new 75000 litre fuel tank will be installed and the sewage pump out facilities will be upgrades. Also, disabled access will be improved.

Those opposed to the redevelopment, headed by the organisation Save Rose Bay, believe that adding another 107 berths will bring more people to the marina, and so create much more traffic. Forty percent of the existing views on the Rose Bay promenade will be lost or reduced and the bay will lose its open water character. Also, by removing so many of the swing moorings, smaller boats will have to pay higher fees in order to park inside the marina. Due to the significant increase in the marina’s footprint, the bay will look jam-packed with boats when seen from the Rose Bay Promenade or on the water. Kayakers or little boats will find it dangerous navigating in the bay and around the marina. The new 75000 litre fuel will become a safety hazard to the Rose Bay promenade, and, there will be a risk of fuel spillage into the water when refilling, as no fuel spillage barrier is proposed, any spillage could enter the harbour with no containment.

Addenbrooke’s main argument in favour of the redevelopment is that there will be less boats and more bay. They aim to do this by concentrating the flotilla of boats in the bay into the new fixed births, resulting in 65 less boats. The new marina will only take up 4% of Rose Bay, compared to the current marina which occupies 6%. The new marina will also open up 2 hectares of new open water space. The modern new marina has been designed to float, which is more environmentally friendly than the current 30 year old structure supported by hardwood pylons. By removing 105 swing moorings, delicate sea grasses will be able to grow back. Also, the new modern 75000 litre fuel tank is safer, cleaner because it uses diesel fuel rather than the more volatile petrol.

A representative of Rose Bay Marina, who wished to be known only as Grant, when interviewed described the new marina as more environmentally friendly for a number of reasons. The fact that the new marina will be afloat will allow for new underwater rejuvenation, and the oils that currently seep out of hardwood pylons will cease. The redevelopment will also reduce the metal in the water by around 50%, reducing the amount of rust. The removal of 105 of the swing moorings is much better for the environment, as swing moorings have large chain shackles, about as thick as your ankle attached to sea bed. These chains act like a lawnmower when the boats move around; ripping up the sea bed and grasses. With the removal of many of the moorings, these effects will be drastically reduced. Countering community concerns regarding parking and increased congestion, Grant argued the new marina will park all the cars in the Lyne Park Car Park, 600 m down the road and either bus or boat the members to the marina.

The proposal has attracted widespread community and media attention, with six articles in the Sydney Morning Herald and one in the Daily Telegraph. Most of these can be viewed on the Sosrosebay website. An article in the Sydney Morning Herald described how an elite boy’s school had gone to the police after it was discovered students were being paid to collect signatures in favor of the Marina. The redevelopments have been fairly criticised in the media, and looking at the blog on Sydney Morning Herald’s website, it is easy to see the broader community sentiment towards the redevelopments.

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, the redevelopments have been left to the council, rather than state or even federal government. The SMH criticised this approach, calling it, “beyond council jurisdiction”. Although, due to changes in policies over marinas, the Planning Minister will have no say on the topic, rather, leaving the decision to Woollahra Council for what may become, Sydney’s largest marina. Retired Maritime Authority manager, Ivan Patrick said that the council may be less concerned with the harbour-wide impact of the development, compared to state government.

The key issues are the battle of redevelopment and change against the conservation of an existing environment, as well as aesthetics, the environment and benefits to the boating community. Both sides make good arguments, but also have weaknesses. The local community is looking to protect Rose Bay’s existing aesthetics and traffic flows, while ignoring undeniable benefits such as improved public facilities, greater safety in fuel management, and potential improvements to the marine environment. The developers, who it must be remembered are profit driven, are looking to meet the demands of the local boating community, but probably have little regard for the legitimate concerns of Rose Bay residents.

There is an obvious distrust between the Rose Bay community and the developers. It would seem the developers have not made enough compromises in order to keep the local community satisfied. This distrust is aggravated by obvious inconsistencies in the developer’s propaganda. A Rose Bay Marina fact sheet states there will be 50 less boats, whereas on the website it says there will be 65 less boats. Do such inconsistencies make the whole proposal flawed? No, but they certainly give cause for suspicions. Such inconsistencies and widespread community discontent make it hard to determine if the developments should proceed. In the absence of an independent report examining in detail the pros and cons of the redevelopment and what compromises could be made to better satisfy the local community, the development should not be allowed to proceed.

Woollahra council will meet in around two months to determine the outcomes of the redevelopments.

Bibliography••Marina Myths – Busted!!, Rose Bay and Point Piper fact sheet•Grant, Rose Bay marina spokesperson•,22049,22051355-5006009,00.html


And their effect on the built environment

They are known as Hurricanes in the Caribbean, Typhoons in the China Sea, Cyclones in the Indian Ocean and most commonly called Tropical Cyclones. You can call them what you want but they all have one thing in common: they are extremely destructive when they hit cities and towns.

A cyclone is a huge mass of air moving in a spiral with winds that can reach up to 250 km/h. A cyclone starts off in the sea where the winds are calm and the water temperature is at least 240. Warm air pushes upwards at a fast rate while cold air is sucked in below. The warm air gains moisture and starts producing thunderclouds. Spinning in a clockwise direction (anticlockwise in the Northern Hemisphere), the cyclone gradually picks up speed. Driven by the fast winds, the Cyclone can move at up to 50km/h. While all this is happening a distinct “eye” is forming in the centre of the Cyclone. This “eye” unlike the rest of the Cyclone is completely calm and is not windy at all.

Cyclone Tracy was the most destructive cyclone recorded to hit Australia since white settlement in 1788 (the Bathurst Bay cyclones killed 300 people but didn’t reach land). Cyclone Tracy hit the coastal city of Darwin on Christmas Day 1974. Although people had warning on New Year’s Day about Cyclone Tracy, they were busy preparing for Christmas and thought that the cyclone would pass away just like Cyclone Selma had done three weeks before. Cyclone Tracy came roaring down the Arafura Sea (where most the cyclones develop in that area) and was on track to bypass Darwin but changed direction 900 past Melville Island and straight towards the city. At this time most people were asleep or partying. By 1:00 AM, the city of Darwin felt the full effect of the cyclone. Some people were outside when it hit but most people got to a safe place for shelter. The cyclone had passed by 4:00 AM. Nearly 90% of the houses in the city had been damaged or destroyed (50,000 of the 80,000 were ruined beyond repair) and 66 people were dead. 27 boats went out to sea on the morning of the cyclone to try to ride out the storm, but only 9 returned. 25 out of the 66 people that died, lost their lives at sea. Nearly everyone in the Northern Territorian capital was affected in some way by Cyclone Tracy.

Although you can’t change the path of a cyclone, there are ways of reducing it’s impact. Systems for advanced warning are pretty advanced now and people now have time to prepare for cyclones. There are now satellites and radars so we can detect cyclones and accurately predict their course. There were no accurate warnings 50 years ago and people had to rely on sight and their barometers. Normally most people who die from a cyclone die from being at sea. So if a cyclone is coming, it’s safest to stay indoors in a small room with the windows sealed shut and any debris outside put away in a safe place. The other thing that has changed is that when Darwin was rebuilt after the cyclone, they used new construction rules so that all of the new buildings are much stronger and more likely to survive very strong winds.

Paraguay; facts about the country; I included photos,and a map.

Paraguay is a country in South America, about the size of California. Paraguay was founded by Juan de Salazar on August 15, 1537. It was ruled by Spain until May, 1811.

Paraguay’s population is distributed unevenly due to the conditions of the Parguan River. On the eastern side ot the Paraguan River is grassy plains, wooded hills and tropical forests with temperate weather. On the west side ot the Paraguan River it has low, flat marshy plains and a seniarid temperature. The capitol city is Asuncion, which lies on the Paraguan River. About ninety five percent of the population is Spanish and Guaran. The majority of the population speak Spanish. Guaran and Spanish are the official languages. Germans, Japanese, Koreans, Chinese, Arabs, Brazilians and Argentines are some who have settled in Paraguay.

About ninety percent of Paraguans are Roman Catholic. The rest of the population are Protestant.

Paraguay’s natural resources are hydroelectric sites and forests. Parguay’s agriculture is cotton, sugar cane and soybean. Manufacturing products are sugar, cement, textiles and wood products. Paraguay trades meat products, lumber, vegetable oil, yerbamate, cotton and soybeans.

The countries hydroelectric resources include the world’s lergest hydroelectric generation facility at the Itaipu Dam. It lacks significant mineral or petroleum resources. The economy is dependent on exports of soybean, cotton, cattle, timber and electric generation.

Paraguay is governed by an electer president and is a Constitutionsl Republic government. Luis Gonzalez Macchi has been Paraguay’s president for five years. He selects a cabinet. The Supreme Court is the highest court. The senate and the president select nine members to join the Supreme Court.

The United States has assisted Paraguay in development since nineteen thirty seven. The United States has given more then five million dollars to help Paraguay. The United States also provides assistance to their military.

Paraguay seems like it would be a beautiful place to visit. The country is like the United States with different types of land. It has many sites to visit. I would like to go there to see the people and learn about their culture.

Budget Traveling: No More Holdups

Have you ever as a child encountered those disappointing moments where your father or mother had to cancel some highly-expected trips because of financial reasoning? Or have you ever as an independent adult put off your own or family vacation due to lack of confidence in choosing the best of the best for every single aspect of your travel plan? If you answer yes to at least one of these questions, then this paper would definitely help you to understand the reason behind your parents’ action or maybe solve your own travel holdups problem in return. If you answer no to both of the questions above, then this paper would inspire you and take you to experience the sensational world of budget traveling. In this paper, there are going to be four major categories to be discussed and they are: the reason behind the travel cancellation for people in general, the definition of budget traveling, the benefit of budget traveling and last but not least, the ways and strategies of budget traveling.

Travel holdup that happens due to the product of financial considerations would probably the most common travel problem happening so frequently in our life. In “Luxury Travel on a Tight Budget: Global Travel and Vacation”, Chris Robertson (2007) states that many people when asked the reason why they lay back the idea of taking some time off for travel, unfortunately, would simply say, “It’s just a matter of time until I would’ve gathered enough money for my dream holiday.” Looking from this example, we could instantly perceive that money factor comes first on the list of the travel holdups reason. It is something undisputable that when having to face with financial dilemma, people would have the tendency to part themselves away from luxuries and other unnecessary expenditure including vacations.

Another motive, excluding money related factor, that would hold responsible for the push back on making such trips would be the weak mindset that these people have about traveling. People may see that working seems to be more justified than going away on holidays, as saving or making money is always encouraged rather than purchasing luxuries. These people, foolish in their minds, never actually thought about the real benefit of having holidays. The benefit of having a vacation would be apparent on its educational aspect to teach both adults and children by giving something much more vivid and perceptible for their minds to digest. In “The Family Vacation (Climate-Change Lessons Included), Eilene Zimmerman (2007) explains about the significance of vacations, including educational trips for children as they learn better from experience than just by reading textbooks and this works just the same for adults. People need a break from time to time to divert their already tired minds and bodies from all the daily business they confront each day and if they think of holidays as secondary necessities then they might as well forget the idea of having them at all because their foolish judgment has trapped them in a deep well without a rope to crawl out with.

Lastly, the reason on why people postpone their holiday plans would probably because they are just afraid to take the risk of having the image of their most well-charted travel agenda ruined; hence, stalling as much time as possible to try to achieve perfection, whereas in the real world, we all know that perfection is something unfeasible, relative to the mindset of the thinkers. My opinion is that there is no such thing as the faultless holiday; there are always the possibilities of something going wrong, even when it comes to the most expensive or most well planned itineraries, so it is just unjustified to think that the longer the wait, the better the result is going to be.

To prevent a further due in your travel, I would introduce budget traveling as the key to success for your vacation plan. Budget travel is defined as a tactful way to minimize the travel cost but still having all the chances in the world to relax and enjoy. “Six Budget Travel Secrets”(n.d., para.1) argues that “Budget travel is not just about finding ways to spend less. Their point is to have just as much fun while spending less”. Another point to clarify the meaning of budget traveling is also discussed by Steve Gillman (2007) in “Three Cheap Travel Ways”, as it argues that “Cheap travel means you get to go more often, go on longer trips or just save some of your money for other things. Fortunately, it doesn’t mean low-quality travel.” In our mundane world, the term “budget” is commonly misunderstood as inexpensive with inferior quality by people in general. When people hear the term “budget”, they would subconsciously demean the whole travel plans and would rather to put off the whole idea of taking vacation rather than to see the great benefits and journey awaits them. Hence, another main purpose of this paper besides informing people and discussing on how to become a smart traveler but also to change people’s negative perspective about budget traveling by elaborating on the benefits of budget traveling.

Budget travel serves the traveler community with double purposes; first, it does not only give people the satisfaction of cost reduction but also in term of something much more valuable than money. There are many possibilities to save some money through budget traveling, for example: staying in a motel rather than hotel would definitely put relieve in your financial dilemma such as: going to free tourist attractions, staying with your relatives or friends, and other things that could save you a penny would not hurt to try. Although, to budget travel means to carefully organize your travel itineraries, in every money-related aspects in the agenda, it gets so much more interesting and arbitrary when it comes to the journey itself. People are tired of going through sense of traveling that only works on the eye for that particular instant. They want something vivid, something that would leave deep impression in their hearts and this could be done by real interaction with the local people of the place they are visiting. According to Kurt Kutay, founder of Wild land Adventures in Seattle in the article “The Anti Beach Vacation”, “People want more meaningful travel experiences and they are finding them in interactions with people from different cultures” (cited in Christie, 2004, para. 2). In budget travel, it is strongly suggested to blend in with the local by going to local pubs, restaurants, or even local religious events since these experiences are something more valuable than the money that we spend for the air tickets of hotel rents. Hence, the hidden benefit of interacting and finding friends with the local people would be another brilliant way to be involved in the fun world of budget traveling.

Now that we know the great benefit of budget traveling, we are going to move on to the tricky, yet fun part of how people are going to go about to achieve maximum satisfaction in budget traveling. There are two ways to make cutbacks on the unnecessary extravagant travel expenses; first, people should take the benefits of fully exploration of a place for granted by staying in each new place for a while to get acquainted with the surrounding community. Steven Gillman (2007) in “Three Cheap Travel Trips” suggests through his real life experience that by exploring each new place long enough and not moving from hotel to hotel will benefit the travelers a lot for many reasons: they can enjoy the vacation more without being rushed by time, the cost of accommodation would be a lot of cheaper, and there is a big fat chance that they would find something interesting in that particular local area. Second, it is not atypical that people would spend the bigger proportion of their budget mostly for things like food, transportation, and accommodation, where actually they could have invested their money on other aspects such as to visit local public interest: bars, local food restaurants, local shows and etc. Gillman (2007) influences his reader/travelers to start acting smart and to become opportunistic travelers. The term “opportunistic” here would probably best defined as to be as alert and as informative as possible towards every alternatives in traveling aspects, especially those concerning about the money cost as they should be looking up for the one that cost the less. Being an opportunistic traveler means more than just getting the best price for food or gas in that area but it is also an effective way to help tourists to decide on what they prefer to see and know about their place of interests. According to another article by Gillman (2006), “Travel Tips”, there are many examples that smart travelers would do to get the best- priced accommodation while traveling abroad: firstly, “to find out where local visitors from within the country stay”, secondly, to bear in mind that almost all the room charges are negotiable, and finally to consider other cheaper alternatives such as hostels or motels. There are also some interesting travel tips that could be found in Gillman (2006), where it is suggested that people should not eat in tourist restaurants, but at the local diners, since in most cases tourist restaurants would have the tendency to be rather superficial and over- priced. Another tip that could be considered helpful in its nature would probably to look for free attractions and places of interest first followed by the common tourist destinations since there is a possibility that, after all the fun, there would not be enough time to do the expensive activities.

In the preceding text, there is a nice discussion on many ways to suppress the cost of accommodation but it would be an endless task to explain every single detail on how you can diminish your cost in every aspect of traveling, but as long as you can get the correct mindset and strong adventurous spirits, all these little details that you can do would become like a second nature and you would make your choices intuitively without having to waste a lot of time thinking what to eat, or where to go, or where to stay.

Budget traveling is something that could be applied from small to huge things; it is fun, it is adventurous, and it is certainly addictive. The world of budget traveling is a total “catch” for the modern travelers these days, where people could get enough interaction with the local culture of their destination places to actually learn and feel to become one of the locals. Looking from all the facts above, budget travel is a way of traveling that I would very much recommend to all of you as I would like to share one of my very own traveling experiences. Being an Indonesian, it would make Bali, the island of paradise as the perfect place for the my study site because it serves all the aspects as a top world destination with its negotiable perks, affordable airplane tickets (at least for me) and also last but not least, a great place to get sun tanning. The additional purpose of this research would probably to conclude whether money could buy the most successful vacation or not. The many trips I took to Bali would be accountable since I have been doing it since I was very young, but if there is one thing that never changed during all those trips would be the lavish, luxurious way I enjoyed them. Whenever I go to Bali, I would stay in five star hotels with their king-like catering and hospitality services, devouring on only the most famous restaurants in the whole island. I would have no complaints against how overly satisfied I was with all of these luxuries living but I have gotten so tired and bored with going through everything all over again every single time I set my foot on that place. In December 2006, I and a couple of my high school friends were planning to take a journey together to Bali and we were discussing about all the travel aspects that we need to solve for solutions, that would be mainly money-related problems, I read about an article of budget traveling in newspaper somewhere about this so called budget traveling, where travelers do not have to be fully loaded with cash but still having the opportunity to experience the same great satisfying journey. I shouted to them, “I knew it. We are going to plan nothing for our trips to Bali. It is all going to be done in budget traveling way”. Considering that it was a long holiday and we also thought we needed more time to actually explore the authenticity of Bali, we spent a couple weeks in Bali, staying in a cheap motel located in downtown area for a week, the key for successful shopping extravagant. From the very beginning we never set up arrangement with travel agencies, we decided that all the itineraries in our trip would be spontaneous and cheap. We explored every corner of the downtown area for four days, conversing with some of the locals, where as we got to know them better, would give about half-priced off, sometimes, free shell necklaces to put in as bonus. We would go to the local markets, where the locals bought their groceries and other necessities, tried their local food, including one delicacy that I would never forget in my life, that would be called, “babi guling” or suckling pig. The crunchiness of the pork skin mixed with the aroma of the spices would be a life time worth eating experience. If hypothetically I had not made that decision of going under the mercy of my tight budget, I would not have experienced all these random, breathtaking, and enticing understanding of Balinese culture. The money factor and the level of luxuriousness of place of interests would not really the biggest factor to determine the success of a trip, but it is the way it is being enjoyed.

Endless of saying, after personally undergoing some real life traveling experience under a tight budget situation, it would be ridiculous to disagree with the fact that budget traveling is one great undisputable solution for travel hold-ups due to that of financial factor. Budget travel seems to give the idea to a lot of people under good terms but the benefit of traveling on a tight budget would only work to the greater benefit of some people with the capabilities of sensing what the right decision to make and what is wrong to choose. People who are successful from budget traveling are usually the ones who are knowledgeable and daring enough to fix their own meal plans and etc. during their journey. They would be prepared of anything unexpected, including hunger or staying in unhygienic motels. In other words, people who want to do budget travel have to be fully informed about their place of destination and plan everything from beginning till the end with some precise measurement due to the budget-constraint. This final statement is not made to scare people away from doing budget traveling but only to give neutralization effect for those amateurs out there so they do not put exceedingly high expectations over their next budget traveling trips.

REFERENCESBudget travel: How to get the best deals on your vacation travel. Retrieved October 30, 2007 from, L. (December 2004). The anti beach vacation. CNN Money Online. Retrieved September 25, 2007.

Gillman, S. (2006). Travel Tips. Retrieved October 30, 2007 from, S. (2007). Three cheap travel tips. Retrieved October 30, 2007 from, C. (2007). Luxury travel on a tight budget: Global travel and vacations. Retrieved October 30, 2007 from budget travel secrets. Retrieved October 30, 2007 from, E. ( March 4, 2007). The family vacation (Climate-change lessons included). The New York Times Online. Retrieved September 25, 2007.