Stan Lee Pengelly's Travels

Bangladesh Trip Part 3

Bangladesh Trip Part 3
Exhilaration and dread.  Those two emotions have always been what I felt when traveling by road in Asia, but this time it was more intense. My two guides and I were blasting down a mountain road in a beat up old Toyota Land Cruiser on our way back to Ruma.  The road was barely wide enough for the Cruiser and in Third World style…

Bangladesh Trip Part 2

Bangladesh Trip Part 2
I wrote in Part 1 that I go to places like Bangladesh for the photography.  This is only partially true.  I like seeing how other people live, hearing what their concerns are and observing their customs.  Think of me as an amateur cultural anthropologist with a camera. The night before leaving on a hike to Boga Lake, we met up with the…

Bangladesh Trip, Part 1

Bangladesh Trip, Part 1
After my face smacked the headrest in front of me, I sat in my bus seat and thought: “Wow. I survived.” Other than a little numbness in my upper lip, I felt fine. For several seconds all was silent in the bus. Everyone was stunned. Then came the crying, screaming and chaos. After struggling to get out, I found out…

Doing Night Photography in Nepal

Doing Night Photography in Nepal
Going to someplace like Nepal is very enjoyable.  There are lots of things to see and do, and the things to see and do don't stop at sundown.  For me, just looking up at the night sky and photographing it is at least as rewarding as, say, visiting a Buddhist monastery or witnessing a festival dance. In the industrialized world, light…

Mt Kilimanjaro

Mt Kilimanjaro
My cheapo Casio watch said it was about 4am. The battery was so cold and weak the liquid crystal display was barely visible. We were already four hours into our summit assault on Mt. Kilimanjaro and we still had at least four hours to go. In the group of about a dozen I was climbing with there were Kenyans, Tanzanians…

Listening for Birdsong at The Killing Fields

Listening for Birdsong at The Killing Fields
One by one, the other tourists and I stepped off of the bus and walked the hundred or so yards to the memorial stupa at Choeung Ek.  Though a modern building, its design was traditional Khmer architecture in appearance with a spire rising high above it like a lightning rod. It had twin entrance doors, two stories high and very…

The Mustang Kingdom Trip, Part 2

The Mustang Kingdom Trip, Part 2
I could hear my horse’s hooves below making a pleasing clip-clop-clip-clop and his neckbell staying in time with a musical ding-ding-ding-ding. The dry high altitude air of Nepal was on my face causing the scarf covering my nose and mouth to flap. The horse’s movements I felt through the saddle. With my eyes closed, these were the only sensations I…

Ha’noi

Ha’noi
Ngoc had a pretty good idea that this American would like what he had in mind. Standing there with the American’s cameras draped over his shoulder, he was thinking that this guy would go for something different. Ngoc had met the American only a few days ago. He had flown in from Hue’ and was on a week’s tour of…

The Mustang Kingdom Trip, Part 1

The Mustang Kingdom Trip, Part 1
About 40 million years ago a huge drifting island chunk of Earth’s crust humans would eventually name India came ashore on the southern part of Eurasia. The collision slowed India down by half as it continued to bulldoze its way northward. The density of rock on both sides of the two plates was similar so rather than one plate subducting…