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WELCOME SENIOR BACHELORETTES!
Hi Folks, Lots of good information in this Newsletter about the Search for my Perfect Traveling Companion. Thought I would share with you some of the Facts and Figures below. So many of you commented how you enjoyed my writing about the trip to South East Asia in December, 2004 so I've included more writing about that particular trip. There is now a Senior Bachelor Online Shop! And much more so let's get to it.
Many people have been curious as to how many people have responded to the Senior Bachelor Search and Journey. As of today, July 19, there have been more than 3 million hits to www.seniorbachelor.com, almost 200,000 unique visitors to the website, over 10,000 women have e-mailed me, and approximately 600 women have sent in videotapes, biographies, and photographs. Wow! Another 200 women have sent in pictures and biographies and they will receive consideration, however, preference will go to the women who have sent in videos.
The cut-off date remains September 16, and approximately 10 new submissions come in daily. I have been a busy Senior Bachelor!!! I have viewed about 20% of the videotapes, and I can now say it would be impossible to choose just one woman as there are so many GREAT women who have applied. My best guess is there will be six different women for one month apiece. Again, this is just a preliminary guesstimate. I feel good about the fact that more than one woman will have the opportunity to see the world and I have given myself the opportunity to meet more than one woman.
Remember, this endeavor is called Senior Bachelor, not Dirty Old Man. And, I am 64!!! Ha ha. There will be separate bedrooms-in every sense of the word. While we are mature adults, and two consenting adults etc., etc., it makes much more sense, for both of us, to know going in, that if there is a love connection, we will pursue that after the trip is over. There, I've gone ahead and said it! This takes pressure off of me (whew!!) and "you."
Meet The Senior Bachelor Tour
Due to an extremely heavy workload, I am unsure of how much traveling I will be able to do in August and September. I do plan on a trip to Chicago, TENTATIVELY planned for August 25-27. Details of any trips will be provided in following Newsletters.
Senior Bachelor Online Store
In response to so many of the Newsletter readers who have written in for Senior Bachelor and/or Senior Bachelorette goodies, if you click on this link you will go to the new Senior Bachelor Online Store. There you can buy camisoles, spaghetti strap tanks, T-shirts, hats, Teddy Bears (see above), and many other appropriate, and inappropriate items!! Why not??? A friend set it up for me and it looks great! Let people know that you support Romance and Adventure and are following the exploits of the Senior Bachelor. We've created a logo for SeniorBachelor-ettes so look for that "section" of the store. Let me know what else you'd like to see in the store and I'll check into it. Also, think of inspiring or cute taglines to include on the items. Let's have some fun with it!
Senior Bachelor Blog Returns
For all of you "bloggers" the blog is up and running again. I encourage first time users to visit the Senior Bachelor Blog. If you can't figure it out, grab some young kid- they'll know for sure how to do it. As I mentioned before, the blog is for sharing information and stories relevant to Romance and Adventure and the Senior Bachelor endeavor. Please keep your comments appropriate. Brevity, wit and thought-provoking passages score particularly high points with me!
The single overwhelming aspect of these two countries is the sheer number of people, and the seemingly endless number of young children. Also, the chaotic way of life in general (at least by our standards). For example, in Battambang, Cambodia, the second largest city in Cambodia, there is not one traffic light or stop sign. There is an amazing amount of traffic, and not just 2 and 4 wheeled vehicles, but animals as well-all over the place!! Yet, somehow, it all works. The major transportation for most people are small motorbikes, which are noisy, polluting, and every driver seems to like to honk their horns all of the time. The main road here is paved, or at one point was paved, Now it's pretty cracked up, so a lot of the motorbikes drive on the sides of the road which are dirt, and this kicks up lots of dust. Dogs, cats, chickens, and sometimes cows and pigs are on or next to the road. All of the roads outside of the city are dirt roads, so at any given time the air is full of dust. Most of the sidewalks also are busted up, but one would have a problem walking on them in any case due to the side by side tiny stalls and tables selling everything under the sun, and the motorbikes parked all over them. Even the curbsides are packed with little carts selling food, sneakers, shirts, batteries, you name it, so a lot of the time you walk on the road. When you combine all of these things, yes, it is pretty chaotic, but it's life, it's lively, and I like it. Again, somehow, it all works.
I really like Cambodia. The country seems to have a lot of character. For sure it is very poor and still recovering from the horrific holocaust from 1975-79 under Pol Pot where almost one-third of the population, some 2 million people, were slaughtered. Remember the film The Killing Fields? This is where it occurred. The people are so happy to be able to live in peace and every time you say hello to a Cambodian they give you a big smile and a hello back. Of course the food is awesome. Battambang grows a lot of rice, pineapples, bananas and lots of other fruits and vegetables-some I recognize, most I don't. But they taste good. I took a great "local" boat for 5 hours from Siem Reap, Cambodia to Battambang, and it was like watching a National Geographic Special. All along the river banks were tiny villages-the homes were all tiny wood shacks on stilts. Many people also lived on their boats, which were about 20 feet long, 6 feet wide, and had kind of a cocoon roof made of reeds. I suspect these people have lived like this for a long time.
As my previous e-mail mentioned, I was stuck in Thailand for 13 days having a new crown made and getting over a nasty cold. For 5 of those days I went to Phuket and Ko Phi Phi islands, the latter really nice. I'm off on the river boat tomorrow morning back to Siem Reap, where Angkor Wat and many other temples are located.......Now back in Siem Reap and I'm sending such a long message because this is one of those rare times where I have a full day with little to do. The boat ride back yesterday to Siem Reap took 7 hours, but was really good. The flight to Hanoi, about 2 hours in length, doesn't leave until 6:00 pm, and I have done what I've wanted to do here (will see Temples with son Richard who will visit me over here when I return in 3 weeks) so I've got time on my hands to bore you!!
I've been gone almost exactly 3 weeks, and I have met 3, yes, 3 Americans. Undoubtedly there are many more here but I don't see them because I am a "backpacker" and stay in different areas. Having said that, we all go to the same sights and I still do not see Americans. The hotel owners tell me that very few Americans come to Cambodia, Laos and Burma because it's too tough for them-and they're right. The travel is hard, and that's the reason the backpackers are generally all in their 20s. For example, I was up at 6:00 am yesterday morning, found a motorbike to take me to the boat pier, then was on the boat for 7 hours. It stopped once along the way, but these boats have zero toilet facilities so you have to hold it in. There were about 25 people on the boat, all tourists-no Americans, which is fine with me. When we arrived at the pier in Siem Reap only motorbikes were available for the about 25 minute ride to the city. I do not like motorbikes as I fear getting tossed and screwing up my legs. Plus the roads are all dirt and huge ruts due to the monsoon season and it's a bitch of a ride-especially with a pack on your back.
When I came into the city the 3 places I would have liked to stay were filled, so I had to schlep around (with a pack and it's about 100 degrees) to find a place-which I eventually did after about 30 minutes. And this is typical as generally I am never in one place longer than 2 days. I'll arrive in Hanoi about 10:00 pm tonight by the time I clear customs and all that, and then will head into the city to find yet another place. I'm not moaning, just describing how the days go. I do question why I am the only person resembling my age doing this, and it's because I do challenge myself and I think it prevents me from getting soft. Let's face it, life in Manhattan Beach is great, and I love it, but it's soft. About 25% of the time when I travel like this, I think I'd like to be back in MB and I wonder what the hell I am doing!! But usually the other 75% makes up for it. Usually. That's it for now. Talk to you soon. RR
PS- Back to today- July 19, 2005. Ladies, I do not plan to do any backpacking type of travel on the Journey. (Are you relieved??!! Ha, ha.) RR
That's it for this week. Very best wishes to you all and thanks so much for being part of the Journey for Romance and Adventure.
I remain respectfully yours,
Richard Roe, The Senior Bachelor
Please remember that when you submit tapes or any other materials, you agree that they may be used in any manner or media worldwide as determined solely by me, including, but not limited to a future episode of The Oprah Winfrey Show and its promotion.