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Old 12-24-2013, 11:59 AM   #76
Dubnjoy000
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

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Nice fold...painful but correct IMO.i think checking back turn might be best.

Great job taking down the tourney!
Thx. Not sure if checking turn is best... I thought about it over the past couple of days, and remain convinced that betting turn is better, IMO. Perhaps I could be convinced otherwise, but with an AQ10 flop with two spades and me holding the Ks, I think I am almost always going for 3 streets of value... I think that many Ax will call, as well as Qx and 10x with a spade. And almost only a flush will reraise. So I believe there is as much if not more combos that will call compared to those that will reraise.

This is strictly related to my range, but because I have a fair amount of triple barrel bluffs (maybe less on this board though), I need to compensate by betting for value for three streets as well.

My turn bet was 40% and he XR 2.5x, giving my 4 to 1 on my call... just about the right odds if he has air there a small percent of the time. Maybe I should of bet 25-30% to give him a better price to spaz-raise and me to call... Like I said, I can still be convinced that a check is better, but for now think a smaller bet is slightly better...
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Old 12-28-2013, 10:16 AM   #77
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

The casualties of staying in Manila...

After a more than questionable massage, I go downstairs with the girl, but leave her in the living room for 1 minute to get her a glass of water... Huge mistake! A 750$ one, as even if my valuables were safe and locked up in my room upstairs, I fell to notice that my housemate's Ipad was charging just by the couch...

She didn't have a bag, so she simply tucked it underneath her pants. Photo shots in the elevator show her dissimulating an object behind her purse and under her shirt...

Why steal an Ipad you may ask, as she will not have access to it without the password... But here is the deal : my friend got a phone call from supposedly the Apple Store, asking for his ID and password saying they can report it stolen to the police... And it was a phony call! The thieving network were simply trying to get access to his computer.

Anyhow, I will not have to deal for a long time with this city anymore, as I will be heading to Sabang, a beach town, where I intend on getting an apartment and spending a few months there.

On the plus side : even though I do not recommend to anyone to spend an extended period of time in Manila, there is a new poker room that just opened, Solaire, that is offering some higher stakes. Here is a report taken from the Philippines thread :

Solaire is truly trying to cater to big games. Last time I was there it was a 50/100 NLH to fill a table, 100/200 NLH with very deep stacks, 100/200/500 PLO with most players buying in around 60k, and 500/1000 NLH with a couple mil on the table.

posted by sourbluff

note : 40 pesos is approximately 1$ US


Run Good all

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Old 12-28-2013, 03:34 PM   #78
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Do you know which family-friendly resorts or areas have poker rooms with beatable rake, e.g., Cebu?
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On the plus side : even though I do not recommend to anyone to spend an extended period of time in Manila, there is a new poker room that just opened, Solaire, that is offering some higher stakes.
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Old 12-29-2013, 11:01 AM   #79
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

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Do you know which family-friendly resorts or areas have poker rooms with beatable rake, e.g., Cebu?
As far as the rake, you will not get better than what Resort World offers in Asia (5% and capped at 10$). There was a thread started a few months ago (and now dead) in the travel section about the live games in Asia, with the consensus being that you could not play live poker professionally outside of Macau ; I have met quite a few live grinders here and in Cambodia, so I have to disagree with this statement coming from seemingly online players. Albeit the rake is not very friendly.


http://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/92...-asia-1341013/


I think that overall, from the rooms I have seen/read about, Germany, Canada and the US remain the best rake friendly live games (I remember the Riverrock only raking 2$ in a 2-5 game of a min buy-in of 500$, max 1500$). All I know about Singapore, is that the game is a 5-10 and seems big enough.


As far as the games in the other cities in the Philippines, they are quite small (they rarely go higher than 25-50 pesos, sometimes 50-100). But if I am not mistaken, you would probably come here during one of the APT events? That would solve the problem of only small games being offered.

I have not visited the Philippines outside of Manila, and am leaving the city on the January second to go to a scuba diving beach town named Sabang. But what I read about Cebu, is that it would definitely be more family-friendly with the beach being a ferry ride away. The Philippines thread has a more detailed description of the games running there and what not.


http://forumserver.twoplustwo.com/92.../index460.html


The APT in Cebu, it will be held Febuary 12-19, with the main event being a buy-in of just over 1k US$.


http://www.theasianpokertour.com/apt...ries-cebu-2014

Last edited by Dubnjoy000; 12-29-2013 at 11:07 AM.
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Old 01-03-2014, 04:16 PM   #80
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Iron Man Challenge, Part 2

...The J8s river bluff was a nicely timed boost of chips, increasing my stack by about 25%. These chips are still warm when I look down at AJs in MP and put in a min raise ; button takes no time to 3bet me 2.5x.

I do not have too much information on villain, for he has just sat down at the table about 8 hands ago. All I have noticed, is that he is well known in these parts both by the regs and the staff, letting me believe that he has been grinding here for a while... and something about his demeanor and his betting sizes suggests that he might be an online reg as well...

Knowing that a button 3bet is very standard online with a wide range combined with the fact that this is the second time that he 3bets me this round, I gather more chips than a call warrants and put in a 2.1x 4bet. He grimaces as he most likely was not expecting a reraise... but still makes the call.

Flop comes an interesting K88. A good board, for I do not see him fighting back with mid pairs (not for more than 1 street, anyways...). I cbet 35% as he instantly releases his hand without a fight ; mission accomplished, I think he will give second thoughts before 3betting me again.


2 hours later...


Even if I keep telling myself that with this structure, there is no humanly possible way I will not get a heater at some point, the hours go by with me folding an usual amount of hands, and my chips dwindling down.

After 8 hours of play : Practicing some disciplined folding. Sure, there are a few spots where I can 3bet, but against these guys and with cold cards, I opt more often than not for the low variance route of taking a flop in position. Unfortunately, sometimes you simply cannot do anything...

After 10 hours of play : The people at my table are very friendly. If it wasn't for the interesting chatter, I think the green felt would make for a good pillow... Also, the Red bull kindly offered by my neighbor is keeping my body slightly vertical.

After 12 hours of managing to stay awake : One third of the table is on a long, undetermined break (sleeping in a corner, most likely), but even with all that juicy dead money, I still do not manage to get my steals through and cannot, alas!, for the life of me find playable cards to tangle with those 2 LAGs that play almost every hand, it seems. So so sleepy...

After 15 hours, an interesting situation pops up that I did not think would happen in this tournament : the clock was called.

A friendly Singapore aggro kid (who lets the whole table know that he is on a mission to either triple up or bust in order to catch his plane), is called the clock upon after barely tanking for 1min on a river all-in. He folds AK face up (top pair, top kicker) while the other player, an old spazzy French player, rolls over a nonsensical bluff... Which brings us to my next hand vs tilty-Singapore-kid.

It is folded to me on the button when I happily look down at A6ss, a strong starting hand for this position - of course -, but God sent considering our friend in the BB is blowing steam. I make it 2.8x - a larger sizing than my standard min-open -, trying to rep a steal. SB calls. Singapore friend takes his time, plays with his chips, before nonchalantly throwing in a 3x 3bet.

I do not mind a 4bet here, for I am ahead of his range by a mile... But I would not like to have to 6 bet shove (if he happened to 5bet) with a hand that is most likely 58-62% versus his range... And why cancel my position... Sure, by calling, I let the SB in cheaply, but I also give the opportunity to our tilting-friend to spew some chips while I can put pressure on lots of boards... I call.

Flop comes a cool A57 (1spades), giving me top pair with runner runner outs until the end of the world! I meticulously observe the SB while he checks, not looking interested at all in participating any further in this hand... Our squeezer, on the other hand, takes his time, looks at me observing him, seems uncomfortable as if his plan has gone awry... and checks. I decide to check back, opening up the trap.

Turn is the delightful 9 of spades, giving me a ton of outs to improve. SB almost has to be reminded to check before the Singapore-squeezer fires 50% pot. Mission accomplished : my check induced him to continue with probably very little equity... Sure, I can raise and scoop the pot, but why slow him down? I see him bluffing on any river spades or straight cards that improve my hand... I call.

River is the goofy looking 10, not the card I want to see, but I still snap call when he fires 65% pot... He flips over J8o for the runner runner straight... Sigh! So painful! Why do we play this game again!

It is strenuous to see half of my stack being pushed towards our Singapore friend (even though he apologizes and seems like a great guy...). It is as grueling to push the rest of my stack in his direction, 1 round later, when my nut flush + overs fail to connect... I stand up, shake his hand and wish him good luck while trying to save face as the walk of shame awaits me... Live tournaments are so painful, especially when after investing 15 hours, you have to leave, empty handed and exasperated... Sigh!

But in hindsight, I really enjoyed the structure of this tournament and cannot imagine another one that has better value out there. Remember : the rake was roughly 9% with free bottles of water, food and a structure that is unmatchable.

Well, I have one last day before finally leaving Manila for some more friendly beach towns. The goal is to find an apartment, settle down, meet some people, grind, save some money and simply enjoy the quiet life.

Run good all!

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Old 01-08-2014, 04:11 PM   #81
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Sabang, Philippines

There are places that inspire you, leave a trace of themselves within you... Whether it be images, sounds, smells, people or simply a general state of mind that you wish to reach again... This is not one of them.

When you reach shore, the houses are beautifully stacked up, climbing the hill in such an inspiring demeanor that you may think that this place will make its way into your heart...




Alas! Your perspective changes when you walk inland and realize that the town is packed with girlie bars and old men... What!

It can be an enticing experience for those that crave the hooker-and-blow scene (which I also like to indulge in occasionally) but really, I am trying to find something else. Something more real. More tangible.

I have lots of respect for working girls and love hanging out with them ; preferring their company to the offering of their bodies ; dancing with them as oppose to the lustful touch ; buying them drinks, hanging out, talking, for they are as sincere as you can find (me thinks) as they already have transgressed a certain social stance... And some of the most honest/heartfelt conversations I had, were with working girls (after I let them know that I wasn't interested in pursuing anything outside of hanging out).

So while I understand the loneliness of the foreigners that are 60+ years old, I cannot take much joy in being surrounded by these folks taking a last stab at youth, at beautiful women (nor relate to them).



A few notes on the Philippines vs other SE Asia countries :

the positive :

- Language. English is commonly spoken over here. More so than any other SE Asian country I have been to. Also, Filipino is easier to learn - in my humble opinion - due not only to its Spanish traces, but easier phonetics. Hence, I have been learning a few words everyday and hope to have a decent base when I leave in Juin.

- Women. Yes, Asian women are warm/passionate creatures in general. But something about the Filipina women makes me crack that extra little bit...

- A multitude of islands : If a higher force would of used his magical wand in order to create a paradise down-low on this earth, he would of thought of a country punctuated by 1000 islands, spreading them out one from another slightly and called it the Philippines. It is amazing to have the luxury of jumping on a boat and simply island hop and find a place that you like.

- Live Poker : Outside of Macau (that is declining pokerwise), the Philippines is the place to grind it in Asia. The rake is more friendly and all major 4 cities offer live venues with different games. With Solaire that just opened a few weeks ago in Manila, mid-highstakes are now offered.

- Visas : It is apparently pretty easy to extend continuously your visa without having to leave the country in 18 months. Expat anybody?


The Negative :

- Internet connection. It is not the best. To cater to so many spread out islands, the companies had to even go out of their way and pass a cable under water (see Boracay). So it is by no means a surprise when at times your ground connection simply sucks. Fortunately, there is other ways to get a source like a USB key connection - of course -, but also pocket wifis that while on the expensive side, are reliable.

Expensive country. And I say this basing my references on cheaper countries like Thailand, Cambodia, Laos or Vietnam (not Singapore or Japan). You will pay on average 40-110% more over here, depending if you are in a city or in the provinces (Manila is pricey as ****). But there are always ways to cut in areas and manage your expenses (for me, 2k/month) while still catering to lots of personal needs, pleasures.

Well, I will be on my way to Boracay in the next few days and see if its reputation holds true of natural beauty/ great nightlife...


Run good all!

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Old 01-08-2014, 06:49 PM   #82
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

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- Live Poker : Outside of Macau (that is declining pokerwise), the Philippines is the place to grind it in Asia. The rake is more friendly and all major 4 cities offer live venues with different games. With Solaire that just opened a few weeks ago in Manila, mid-highstakes are now offered.
That's good to know. If there is ever a Black Friday/UIGEA in Canada, I now know where I can keep playing.

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Expensive country. And I say this basing my references on cheaper countries like Thailand, Cambodia, Laos or Vietnam (not Singapore or Japan). You will pay on average 40-110% more over here, depending if you are in a city or in the provinces (Manila is pricey as ****). But there are always ways to cut in areas and manage your expenses (for me, 2k/month) while still catering to lots of personal needs, pleasures.
My family can get by with spending $1K-$2K in Canada. I thought one can live like a king with $2K/month in a third world country like the Philippines. What are your biggest expenses from that $2K?
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Old 01-09-2014, 06:06 PM   #83
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

interesting that you are finding it more expensive, i spend less here than i did in snooky or pattaya
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Old 01-10-2014, 04:49 AM   #84
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

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interesting that you are finding it more expensive, i spend less here than i did in snooky or pattaya
I do not know about Angeles, but Manila was pretty expensive. So is Sabang. If you look at the hotels in Manila, you are starting off at 45$/night for something decent (and more during Christmas time). A standard meal in a tourist area, will be 10-15$. This is WAY more then the value offered in Vietnam or Cambodia.

Nash : 2k/month is what I feel comfortable spending, while still managing to save a substantial amount. Sure, I do live it up somewhat balla, but do adjust accordingly my expenses depending if I am single or not/in a more expensive country ; hence, I do not fluctuate much from my 2k/month.

That being said, I do enjoy copious meals in a fancy restaurant, while sipping on a decent bottle of wine. I am a huge sucka for massages and usually include them in my routine when I grind. I do like to have a decent hotel/apartment, especially when I grind over 50 hours/week in my room.

Something else to account for : I leave an extra 400$ get-out-of-jail-card at the end of my budget every month for the unexpected stuff. Like getting robbed. Losing some items. Having to replace critical electronics, like a laptop, a camera, a phone (which I inclusively had to repurchase in the past few months). I guess that poker has taught me this lesson numerous times : that 1 outer does hit, so be prepared for the worse! And if I did have a family, then I would also adjust accordingly.
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Old 01-10-2014, 05:56 PM   #85
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

yes manila is ridiculous as far as hotel/apartment value, but you can get cheaper than $45 a night, makati apartelle is $25ish a night for a very big room with fridge, its not in the uber nice area of makati but it seemed safe enough, i walked the streets at 4am with no problems

can also get a tiny box at durban hotel right next to burgos for under $30, or a little bigger box for $35ish

you can find decent enough deals in angeles........ but overall if you are talking hotels then yes you are paying way more in PI than in cambo, i thought thailand was roughly the same as PI though apartments are much cheaper there
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Old 01-11-2014, 05:35 AM   #86
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

I actually had a bedroom in an apartment with 2 buddies in a 3 bedroom flat and was paying 20$/night in Manila, but once that ran out, was paying 45-55$ for a hotel in Makati.

There is obviously ways to lower costs, like get a long term lease on a studio, in order to stay in the 15-20$/night range that I feel comfortable with, but the value will never reach what you can obtain say in Vietnam, where you can get a suite (in some places) with a Jacuzzi for 22$/night!!! The same thing can be said about food : Thailand and Vietnam has some of the best food in the world at a very affordable price (I remember being stunned at the meal I got from a street vendor in Thailand for 1$) and some great restaurants. Massages are also 50% more expensive, which made me cut down a significant amount.

There is certain items (that I love to indulge in) that are simply more expensive than Canada, wherever you go in SE Asia. Like wine and cheese (I am French, after all!). Fruit is also expensive in Manila, WAY more than the more appealing Canadian prices. So all in all, there is ways to spend the same amount of money (or even less, if you really want to) than other SE Asian countries, but you will not get the same value for your $, especially in the more touristic areas.

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Old 01-17-2014, 01:48 PM   #87
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

A few Stories

Still in Sabang, as my friend came over from Manila and we hung out for 3 days. I will be leaving for Boracay, but ultimately want to check out Dumaguete, a small university city of about 100k people, just the right size IMO to not be too overwhelming while offering more activities. But in the meantime, I wanted to entertain you all to a few stories.

There is a Texas gold miner up in Dawson City that comes for the season and has a small family sluicing business. Being from Texas, he started playing cards at a very young age and was a dealer in Vegas and on cruises, dealing to the likes of Stuey Ungar, Doyle and Ivey. It many ways, because he is in his 70s and has been around since the early holdem days, he is our Godfather and gets respected as such. He is a winning player and purchased his first house with his winnings, even though he never played professionally. But more than anything, I enjoy his stories of how it was back in the day. Here are 3 of his stories that left a strong impression on me.

Story 1

It is the early 80s and SuperSystem has just recently been released. A young yet still relatively unknown Bill Gates asks one of the pit bosses to get his copy autographed by the legendary writer, Doyle Brunson. The pit boss returns with the following message from Doyle : "tell him that if he wants his book signed, to come sit down and play against us". But Bill Gates threw in a reraise when he asked the employee to go tell Doyle that he will sit down and play against him, but on any of the other empty tables, heads-up and for no less than 1 million$ Needless to say, but his offer was declined.

note : I am not sure if it is 1 or 10 million, so took the safe route and decided on the lower amount...).

Story 2

I am not sure of what year this next story takes place, but it involves Doyle again and a tilting Stu Ungar. All the money finds the middle when Stuey is confidently holding top set and Doyle has the nut flush draw. I believe it is on the turn that Doyle calls the shove with one card to come and when Stu wants to run it twice, Doyle opts for the higher variance route of running it just once. The flush gets there, Stuey loses it and tries to flip over the table (but is unsuccessful at that as well). Doyle shouts "you know why you are always broke, because you are a piece of ****. I only ran it once because I can afford to lose this pot, while you are broke again.".

Story 3

Our friend the story teller has a habit of randomly, out of the blue, start telling a story. But this one came as a shock. Our story teller was playing the main event in Vegas (again, I apologize for not knowing which year exactly) when this unfortunate event happened. The guy loses with AA on the very first hand of the tournament, and being on a downswing for the longest time, he goes back to his hotel room, and proceeded to jump off the window Wow. Such a sad story and nobody knew what to say at the table when our story teller finished talking. And for the doubters, he told us to go question another local player, who also was playing the main event, to verify the authenticity of the story. None of us did.

Of course, as far as the Yukon poker stories go, there is none bigger/sadder then the Brad Booth debacle. I do not know the guy personally so cannot reveal anything that hasn't been made public already. All I can say is that he is respected by the locals and was known for crazy reads and accumulating a mighty amount of chips, in a 5-10 limit game, no less. He sold his house in Whitehorse and then went pro and then... well, you all know the Ultimate Bet scandal, obviously, and the whole Russ Hamilton fiasco. It could of happened to a lot of us, I guess, and his story serves as a reminder that we are all, us poker players, vulnerable to be possessed by our gambling urges. Well, lets hope that it doesn't happen to any of us... That being said, run good all and be happy!
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Old 01-17-2014, 05:33 PM   #88
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

haha...I've heard story 1 before. Love story 2. We know that Doyle can hang with the best players today...would be interesting to see how Ungar would have done. Story 3 is tragic.

Any update on Brad Booth? Pretty sad story as well. Seemed like a talented volatile personality would went down the wrong path. I'll always associate him with the huge bluff he ran on Ivey on high stakes poker.
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Old 01-17-2014, 08:02 PM   #89
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

is there more to the brad booth story than borrowed money degened it in pit and then made video saying sorry?
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Old 01-18-2014, 11:57 AM   #90
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Can't really say anything about Brad, really, that is not stated on this forum already, for I have only met him once (I started playing poker just after he left the Yukon). A couple of people from Dawson have stayed in contact, and last I heard, things were still rough. But from what I have read over here in the blogs (Matt Moore's, I believe...), he is still playing live high stakes games, and therefore getting staked (remember, Guy Laliberte use to stake him when he bought in for that cool million...).

Kickdante : as far as the incident with Doug Polk, WCGRider stated recently on the Podcast that Brad has been paying back. All the best to him, he seems to be a nice guy that fell into one of the numerous pitfalls that surround us, poker players...

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Old 01-27-2014, 02:10 AM   #91
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

At Sea

Hello all. I posted this in the Philippines thread, so I do apologize if you have read it already, but considering the length and personal nature, I figured midway through the post that it definitely belonged here...


Quote

Well, for the public info and if anyone is interested in taking an alternate sea route, I had the pleasure/hardship of testing it out.

Leaving from Sabang, I took the normal Roro to Batangas where I was facing 3options to get to my destination, Dumaguete.

A- Take the bus/taxi back to Manila, spend the night in overpriced/chaotic city and take a 60$ flight in the morning. A fast route, but I had no intention on going back to Manila and preferred seeing some land/sea along the way. So that left me with option B or C.

B- Taking the common route, which is an overnight ferry to Caticlan with the option of visiting Boracay, before taking the bus to Iloilo, the ferry to Bacolod and the bus to Dumaguete. An overnight haul in Iloilo would of probably been in order, as the ferry lands in Caticlan around 6-8amish. A fine route, but I had my heart set on a total different one...

C- A cargo ship with about 150 passengers, all of them Filipinos, with very casual public sleeping quarters



It turned out that the trip was longer than anticipated/warned. Being a cargo ship and all - meaning the cargo holds priority over the passengers -, we stopped in a city that the name eludes me for about 5-6 hours, before hitting the water again for the final haul to Cebu. So we arrived in the city at 6am, 9 hours later that I was previously informed. But doesn't really matter, for I also am on Filipino time (and the poker virtual tables are not going to go away... are they?). Alas!, I missed the ferry to Dumaguete by 20 min, which set me back another 24h.

Conclusion : there is something to be said about taking the less navigated route (tourist-wise) and the experience is sweet ; on the other side, it remains uncomfortable, long, not tourist-adapted (meaning that they do not wait on this ferry for the one commuting to Dumaguete) and costs 2400 pesos from Batangas-Dumaguete, the same a flight would of called for. Anyhow, thought I would share this with you all. End of Quote



Dumaguete. The sunshine rises as the ferry coasts the deck ; even under the golden sky, it is still not the promised land. There is a nice, laid back vibe to this city, but this is not the place where my errant soul will settle down for the next few months. I do nevertheless have to spend a few days over here while I rest my body as the doc tried to admit me to the hospital yesterday... What! Sure, my body is aching in serious pain after my knee clumsily found a rock to fall upon during a Sabang drunken stint (and has since invited our friend infection to the party...), but I did not think it merited a 3-5 day stay in a hospital bed... Thankfully, I was right, and the antibiotics have been doing their job, as obliged.





Pic taken from my hotel rooftop.


Next stop, Sipalay, a quiet, Robinson Crusoe-type beach that should be more in line with what I am looking for. If not, I have another quiet beach to look into on a near by island and that would be my last stop for plan A. Plan B is to fly back to familiar Vietnam, where I already know which places inspire me.

Run good all!

Last edited by Dubnjoy000; 01-27-2014 at 02:22 AM.
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Old 02-04-2014, 06:19 AM   #92
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

From Dusk till Dawn

New Years, midnight, 2014. The fireworks illuminate the Manila sky while, at ground level, the populace is amazed by the heavenly lights ; I curiously contemplate the sky then the crowd, scrutinizing the reactions of the latter, by far more appealing then the exploding crackers... but soon it is all over : the new year exodus is in full throll, as a wave of people leaves the premises.

As I am walking towards my hotel, my mind suddenly deviates from the set destination and carries my body into a strip club... several adult beverages are then being served to me. Just another kick, just another thrill. I pick up a shooter, down it out mechanically, not really enjoying the process outside of that momentarily heat wave... But it doesn't last. It never lasts. I want something more. Something to satisfy my insatiable thirst... Problem solved : my 2 new found friends invite me to a rave.

The reigning uncertainty, confusion of the ravers is palpable as they oblige to the music or sit there, their eyes sticking out of their orbits like lost souls... Maybe it is just the drugs... Maybe it is just another lost generation... Foreigners in a strange land, unsure of the present moment, but still trying to deny the inescapable flow of time... I consider taking a pill myself... but the thought leaves me when I look around and realize that I outgrew this scene a few years ago...

As I am heading home, I find myself walking into a massage parlour... maybe this will calm my urges for wanting more... Probably not.




At the horizon, the dying sun bleeds one last time before sinking into the sea.




How can we forget the beauty of the settling sun... or the wind whispering in our ears in the evening, as we enter the void of our dreams... I guess I got complacent in settling for luxurious hotels, having a flat screen tv, a big spacious room, a fancy washroom while I spent 50+ hours/week pushing buttons on my computer, but meanwhile, feeling somewhat disconnected. I had momentarily forgotten about the beauty of simplicity.

As I lay in my bed, listening to the rumble of the wind and the dripping of the rain, I realize that this is it. This moment. The peace that it brings. How could I have forgotten... How do we ever forget?

Sugar Beach is a desolated little haven, just past a few cliffs, on the outskirts of Sipalay (a pleasant beach town by itself). They are only a few guesthouses - more like huts - spread across the 500m beach, catering to the 200 souls staying here. It is peaceful, to say the least. Outside of kayaking, snorkelling, diving, beach volleyball or shooting some pool, there is not too much to do, but to let yourself ease into the present moment.

While I try to dig myself of yet another downswing, I realize that I love this game. That I am privileged to do this for a living. And I do not know how long my professional years will last, but I will enjoy the ride once again. But unfortunately, it will not be here, for yesterday I lost connection to all my 3 sources of internet. Next stop : Siquijor, a small island hiding a multitude of desolated beaches as well as small villages.

Peace
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Old 02-13-2014, 12:06 PM   #93
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Rural Life

Siquijor. A medium size island off the Visayas, populated by small towns that spread across the seaside. It is only a 1h ferry trip that separates Siquijor from Dumaguette, yet a distinct gap idigs itself in between the urban life of the latter, to the rural one of Siquijor. And while I am heading back to Dumaguette for a day trip to get my visa extension (and typing these words while waiting for the ferry), I am already looking forward to getting back! Haha

There is no specific tourist destination on Siquijor, as foreigners are sparse and spread out across the island.





I am staying in a basic single room, just by the main house of the local family. It is rustic, to say the least. Since I am not drinking, I am spending barely 20$/day!!! Haven't spent this little since... I don't know, probably India, 11 years ago, back when finding the way to the absolute was the purpose of my trip! Haha, good ole days of being early 20s and seeking for The Truth.

So I will be staying here for 2-4 weeks, the time to replenish my bankroll a little after my last surging downswing. Next up? I don't know, maybe Vietnam, but continue to explore the Philippines also sounds appealing...

Random Notes on the Philippines

- Like it is the rule of thumb for the somewhat savvy traveler, when you newly arrive in a location and are coming off the bus, the ferry or any form of public transportation, walk away from the herd of people offering you a hotel, a ride etc. I guess it is common knowledge, but you will always pay WAY too much (like 5-10x more), have to cover a commission for the messenger (assuming you are booking a hotel) or simply end up in the wrong desired destination (especially in places like India). Over here, they charge you 300 pesos to get to San Juan, a little town situated at 12 km from the pier (which is nothing really, 7$ for the trip!). But why pay 300 pesos when the locals pay 25 pesos? So I simply walk away, negotiate with a few motorbikes, got a somewhat deal at 80 (I will never get the local price, and shouldn't) but nevertheless give him 100 upon arrival. I am stubborn, but generous (and take about 20 min to find a cheaper ride, haha).

- Filipinos will pass a foreigner in a line up, but foreigners cannot do the same. Call it the privilege of being a local, but they charge to the front of the line, disregarding your well held position. When I inadvertently did the same, I was politely told to go back in line. Fair enough. But it kills me every time someone passes me...

- Again, I repeat myself, but they are too many white old men over here. Yes, I might not make it to that age and I shall not judge, but we do see lots of mix couples that share a genuine affection, and then you have something like this





a hot, young chick and an uninspiring, cynical looking old man. Makes me shiver every time, even after seeing it countless times...

- I really wonder how this country managed to not only consolidate any sort of central control over all the islands, but how through its history it managed to supply each island, communicate, keep a national identity (there a few different languages over here)... It is curious to see how thousands of islands come together in one instance and form a country... Most of been challenging at times.

Well, tomorrow will be a day of exploration, as I will rent a motorbike and go on some adventures across the island. As far as poker goes, I do not any hands of significance to talk about right now, but do have lots to say about Party Poker and how I had to take most of my action elsewhere, but that will have to be in a next post, because I can imagine I will need lots of words to cover the Party issue...

Run good all!
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Old 02-13-2014, 12:14 PM   #94
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

nice posts, I enjoy living vicariously through your travels. LOL at the pic of old man/young chick, that must be so standard.

So all of these places are wifi accessible? You're grinding as you travel?
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Old 02-13-2014, 01:20 PM   #95
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Yeah, I am grinding in different places, in all sorts of hotels, to a mix result.

For starters, the connection is uneven depending on where you are. So I did lose some $ because of connection issues. Thankfully, I usually play tentative-lower buy-ins (as oppose to my full MTT schedule) when I am not sure of the connection to pot control the outside damages - known to some as variance - caused by an unreliable internet source. Secondo, I am a creature of habits. I wish I could just show up in a new casino, in a new game, and simply crush it. Alas!, I am more one that needs a set schedule + some familiarity around me, so that outside factors do not interfere with my inner concentration. So when I jump from one hotel to another, to one town to the next, it still remains profitable, but to a lesser degree. Hence why I will be staying over here for a couple of weeks, for I found a place which meets all my poker ambiance requirements : peacefulness/familiarity/decent connection.

And yeah, the old men with the young chick is pretty standard here, and more so than other Asian countries actually. I love Asian women, and to me their softness, romantic side and compassion makes them the nuts as far as women go, but when I see such a titanic gap in the age difference of couples and a lack of complicity, it gets to me every time. Then again, there are some quite amazing mix couples that compensate for the ones based on convenience terms.
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Old 02-13-2014, 01:48 PM   #96
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

I hear you. Glad you found a nice spot for a few weeks. Good luck with the grind.

yea, I think that the problem with the old man/young woman isn't so much age--it's that the relationship isn't a relationship but a transaction: money for sex. Or comfort for beauty, or power for sex...take your pick. Each person is after a thing, an object, not another person.
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Old 02-14-2014, 09:32 AM   #97
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Poker question here : 12R on 888, pays top 20, down to 44 players. I wake up with AJo UTG and have 15bb left. What do you do here? The average stack at the table is 20bb, so everyone is in a open-shove or fold mode.

My standard is to shove, unless I have the very top of my range like AA and KK. And my shoving range with 8 players at the table and being UTG, is AJo+, A10s+, KQ+, 66+. So as I am about to open shove, I decide to take another approach and min raise it. Depending on the stats of the players at the table (or the price I am getting) I will call or fold. Basically calling half the table, folding to the other half. What do you think about this different approach?

So I am balancing the times I have the top of my range (AA and KK) with the bottom of my range, and am not putting AJo in neither my induce range, or open-fold range (which I don't really have here). Hummmm, curious situation...

Turns out that an 8bb LAG short stack shoved (which I was calling) with AJo, and SB overjammed with KK. I ended up folding.
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Old 02-14-2014, 08:48 PM   #98
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

close spot.. It looks like a marginal +cev spot...not really any bubble considerations yet. With a slower structure and bad players, I fold. With faster structure and better players, I shove.

The problem with minraising this kind of hand vs. competent players is that sometimes you'll fold out your equity--if the button shoves 33 or KJss, etc. If players are only shoving or folding, I'd want to be polarized here between JJ+ and J8ss type hands (bluffs).

There are some great push/fold resources on pokerxfactor.com (click "toolkit"). I don't have a current subscription but I'm still able to access these resources. There's a push/fold chart and a raise/fold vs raise/call vs openshove tool...very good stuff.
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Old 02-19-2014, 08:41 AM   #99
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Have been touring around Siquijor on this sweet little dirt bike that I rented for 5$/day. You got to love rural Asia, where not only kids stop their daily activities in order to wave at you, the foreigner passing by, but also adults halt their daily chores to greet you. Very nice!

These next 2 emblematic symbols clearly define the Philippines and can be seen widely across the country : churches and basketball courts.






Christianity is present throughout the Philippines as the conquistadors made it to this island centuries back. So while Buddha might have lots of fans inland SE Asia, here it is Jesus that makes his way into people's hearts!






Who says hood BBal when you can have rural Filipino Hoops! This courtyard redefines all together the word Gangsta!


As far as poker goes, I have been enjoying a small upswing, and this after having to adjust from Party to 888 (more on this in the next post). I still play some tournaments on Party, but the core of my action is now on 888, while I will be also adding some Omaha hi/lo from Stars to sweeten my MTT schedule.



Quote:
Originally Posted by bob_124 View Post
close spot.. It looks like a marginal +cev spot...not really any bubble considerations yet. With a slower structure and bad players, I fold. With faster structure and better players, I shove.

The problem with minraising this kind of hand vs. competent players is that sometimes you'll fold out your equity--if the button shoves 33 or KJss, etc. If players are only shoving or folding, I'd want to be polarized here between JJ+ and J8ss type hands (bluffs).

There are some great push/fold resources on pokerxfactor.com (click "toolkit"). I don't have a current subscription but I'm still able to access these resources. There's a push/fold chart and a raise/fold vs raise/call vs openshove tool...very good stuff.
Thx for the feedback, it is always greatly appreciated. You have valid points and I will have to review some fundamentals in the next few weeks. Not a HUGE mistake on my part, but found myself open-shoving for 10bb on the button with K6o and then scratching my head and going "what!?!, that is a bit of a light shove!!!". Nothing too serious, for I do have grasp on the range and metagame, but a bit of polishing never hurts, so thx for the link!

Here is an interestion scenario that I have not encountered before, but have just experienced in one of the tournaments on 888 (that I finished 2nd, 3rd and 3rd this week in fields of over 120 runners), the 12$R. It has an interesting buy-in structure, to say the least ; it is 12$ to join - obviously -, but offers unlimited 9$ rebuys regardless of the chips you have... what!!!

Now since this is the first time that I face this situation, I really haven't thought things over, but the combination of my agro playing style and more starting chips, make it +EV with 7500 starting chips (while others are content with2500 or 5000...) and a will to 3bet wider, to get involved in position or to simply put on some pressure at an early stage. All this at the bargain of 9$ more!!! The add-on is 12$ for 5000 chips, so the 9$ is a insignificant IF you can put those chips to good use (not sit on them). What do you guys think of this format?

Peace all

Last edited by Dubnjoy000; 02-19-2014 at 08:59 AM.
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Old 02-20-2014, 02:55 PM   #100
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Re: Blog : The Yukon, Paris, Vietnam and beyond...

Hey man, nice blog, just read through it all and I really like your writing style.

I don't know why I hadn't got round to reading it until now but I am glad I did. Like somebody mentioned earlier its strange there aren't more people following as it really is very well written and you have a very interesting story to tell.

Will be following from now on that's for sure so keep the updates coming. I also play a fair bit of Omaha H/L so feel free to post some interesting hands here for discussion.

Voted 5 stars btw, very good read.
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