How I saved a packet living in other people’s homes

In the past 15 months, I’ve lived in 10 houses across Melbourne – and haven’t paid a cent in rent, electricity, gas or water bills.


The New Daily. Full story here

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Crank up the salsa

Our Cuban salsa instructor demands, ”Look at me like you love me!”, his face just centimetres away on a sweat-soaked Havana morning.

He sashays effortlessly across the tiled floor, an open window providing minimal relief from the heat as salsa beats pour out of an old CD player. ”Moooove your body. One, two, three!”

Leonardo, a former doctor, has swapped his stethoscope for salsa shoes and has landed my amiga and me on day two of our Cuban adventure. Having caught the salsa bug in Melbourne, we’re here to learn from the best but we’re off to a nervy start. ”Move your shoulders!” he says, as we double over with laughter.

In Cuba, the Castro-loving Caribbean island still largely cut off from the world, one thing hasn’t changed – music’s in the blood, and salsa dancing is as natural as walking.

Traveller, Fairfax Media. Full story here

Down the tube

What started out as a way to relax after a hard day’s work has turned into a tourist trap in Laos, writes Larissa Ham.

The man who claims he accidentally started the tourist craze of tubing in the Laos riverside town of Vang Vieng says its popularity is now hurting the town and its culture.

Thousands of tourists visit Vang Vieng each year – about four hours’ bus ride north of the capital city, Vientiane – to float on a rubber tube down the Nam Song River and to party at rickety riverside bars.

Traveller, Fairfax Media. Full story here

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