Bangkok

by Matt Romantech on October 21, 2017

So here I am in bangkok, my sleeping patterns are all messed up.

I was kind of thrown when I got here by how hot and smelly it was, it didn’t feel like that much of pleasant place to be.

A lot of that was to do with having no wifi or kitchen in my room, and the costs as I came through the airport, I was kind of disgruntled thinking that this wasn’t that good. I looked at the room service and my pad thai cost $7 so I was like . . . this isn’t that cheap. I was expecting to pay a few bucks.

But things have been looking up, I’ve gotten over it a bit and settled in. I got a curry for $4.50 and a bunch of bananas for $2 and I decent coffee for under $2 and a 1.5 of coke was under $1.50, and so I was happy, I spent exactly $11 today so that’s good. But I only have $47 to last me for the next 4 days, which would obviously be fine but just like sofia, I have costs when I come back including the taxi, That’s a day and a half, and the taxi which could be $20, I need another $50, that’s going to cost me $10 to get out. So thailand, is costing me $160 . . . doing the sums it’s coming up about $450 all up for the rest of the trip, so where I budget $500, it’s looking more $650, but realistically, $700. again it’s one of those ones where you’re insanely cheap ass, that you get all miffy because you went away for 11 weeks and your baggage cost you over $500 and some girl in odessa played you for $200, but that’s really all that went wrong and you have to accept that that’s not that bad.

What’s the real problem?

The trading, my broker sent me a personal note saying he wanted to meet to get a grasp on my strategy and this sent me massive alarm bells, because he only contacted me before in the months before I blew my account last time.

Suddenly it hit me, another hole in my strategy, if I’m always hedging, then my leverage is always growing, which means my debt is always growing on the side that I’m losing on.

But what I said was that’s it just covering the same ground, sure I’m building more debt but that stacks against all the profit I’ve taken, not once, but over and over again.

But then it hit me – that would be fine, except I losing $130 a day in carry costs, it only stacks against the profit . . . minus $130 a day.

Once again I see how leveraging up got me into trouble, because I have to face this daily debt taking a chunk out of my ass.

For the first time I am thinking about taking a hit on this mistake I’ve made with the AUDNZD.

I could take off $150k from each side, take a hit of $12k or more, and suddenly well, I’ve dropped about $900 worth of leverage, and I’m probably saving $10 a day in carry costs.

Alternately, I could continue on the way I have the strategy being that once I have leveraged up to $16k, I should expect that my weekly earn will return to $2-3k, and even if I am paying $500 more a week in carry costs than I used to, each week I am building up around another $2k, I am building up my breathing room, so that I can afford to have gaps that are $100k again, room where I can let my position unwind knowing it’s still less likely than it’s ever been that I will see it pop to record highs, putting me in the danger zone.

If the euro was to go to the edge again, but when it got there I was still on a healthy $45k equity, I could open the gap up to $300k again knowing that a pop up 2% is only going to throw me down to $39k, and when the unwind happens, if it unwinds before it breaks, here I am recovering back to $50k.

It seems sound. But in the mean time, that $130 a day is gnawing at me, how is it that once I was making $500 a day and now it takes me almost 3 days to do that? Well it’s not just those carry costs, volatility has backed off, so you’re suspended, waiting for where the next move goes, the problem with the AUDNZD is I’ve been waiting for it to respond to the election result.

I don’t want to start hedging up just to see it dart off again, knowing if it pushed 1.12 again, I’m going to be sweating.

I feel as if especially while I’m still away, I have to hold out to see what happens and make decision when I get back, it’s not much more than 8 days away, 6 trading days.

We’ve got low volatility, we’ve got uncertain markets, we’ve got a situation where I have been and will be unable to trade at all for long periods, a whole 24 hours this week, in low volatility, that means I get next to nothing. You’ve got to see it as a new perfect storm – or in this case, a perfect storm of calm, preventing you from moving forward at more than a snail’s pace, so what it means is even though you got lucky and it reversed all the way back behind $40k, you are still in that situation I described where you must move painstakingly slowly, not because you live on the edge but that volatility has disappeared until it inevitably arises again.

We know we are at most risk from the eur moving up and hitting us.

But we have to trade what’s happening. If the USD moved up, or the GBP moved up, we know we can even up the hedges into a nice place, where we have more equity.

***

Isn’t it strange, I’m up writing about my trading fears, then I have this passionate thought about darya, I sleep in way too late, I wake up, and the nz election coalition negotiation has just ripped my trading apart and continues to do so, I just pop out to get food and it rips me again, the whole day is a write off, again, I learn this hard lesson, I went to travel the world and my trading just tore me to shreds the whole fucking time.

I’m thinking if I can’t get my sleeping patterns right, I’m going to be feeling tired when I supposed to be checking out the temple at angkor wat.

The problem, I’ve given myself a terrible schedule for my last week, so I could just bloody jam it all in knowing I am almost home and there really isn’t that much that could go wrong that I’m not in a position to recover from. I will be leaving in almost 5 days.

But I’ve only given myself 2 days to see angkor wat and one of those days I’m sleeping on the bus which has not worked out for me much. Both of those days are trading days. Again, not brilliant.

I have tried to flip my sleeping schedule, so that I will be tired enough to fall asleep on the bus so I can get as much sleep as possible and see as much of the temples in the 2 days I’m there.

My plan was to pull an all nighter, leaving before dawn so that I could walk all the way into town, knowing that walking will keep we energized, and coming back before lunch to trade this new drama before the european markets open will mean I will have to stay awake to trade, but that the market will close so I’m not under sustained pressure.

Basically it worked in some ways – It was hard work staying awake, but then I still couldn’t get enough sleep, because I woke up again at 2.30 like I did the other night, so I knew that if I went back to sleep, it would take hours and I wouldn’t wake up until lunch again – total fail. I had to get up and pull the same move again, I’ve only had 4 hours sleep in the last 50 hours.

It is catching up with me again – head is fuzzy, I’m rambling and struggling to find the point I’m trying to make.

The point is, I may not have got my sleeping schedule right, but I have seen a tonne of bangkok by leaving before dawn, and it’s changed my opinion of the place.

What I need to do is check where exactly the bus is leaving from tomorrow night and confirm what I need in terms of money and payment for the cambodian visa and angkor wat, this could be $150 or more.

Now it’s making me think about the money situation again – should I have gone to cambodia for two days, should I have done this?

It’s same as what I thought about thailand when I arrived, should I have bothered to come, and I already said my dad – I underestimated how much it would cost to simply have a peek at these places and I didn’t think that through, but ultimately this is the whole point, you pay your money, you find out.

You find out, you know.

It’s costing me almost $300 to go to angkor wat. It’s not part of my research, it’s an opportunity to see something that might be incredible, like the swedish archipelago, or chernobyl, except those were slightly cheaper.

The point is if I didn’t go and see these things, I would remain asking, are they worth seeing. They were definitely worth seeing, I don’t see that it wasn’t a good thing to go and see them, and I can’t see myself saying, oh I wish I’d saved that $300 and 2 days and not bothered to see that, I can’t see how I would feel that way.

That’s aside from all the other stuff like being able to say “oh yes I’ve gone to cambodia, I’ve seen angkor wat, blah blah blah, I’m a very impressive fellow” that I can pad it out to impress people into thinking I’m a rather worldly fellow and extremely adventurous and intrepid, which girls love.

It could be amazing. I might discover cambodia is very amazing. It’s a microcosm of my trip to thailand, it would have been stupid not to take the opportunity to come and see, especially as I had the opportunity I didn’t have with vietnam – I can leave my case behind and not have to deal with all that drama, knowing that the flight home from bangkok was going to be easier than from ho chi minh, not least because getting from angkor wat to ho chi minh would have been another drama, another visa, another sim, all this crap I’m sick of now.

If I didn’t go, I would still be wondering if it was good, and I would have to go next time – I’m not going to chernobyl again soon – I think it’s definitely worth visiting, but if I went back it would be with a new angle. It just means I’ve ticked that box, it doesn’t weigh on me that it’s something I want to do.

The swedish cruise I know is awesome to take a girl on and I certainly would do that, but probably not without a girl. Again, it’s good to have done it and know it’s an awesome thing to impress girls.

Similarly, if you discover angkor wat is also an awesome thing girls would like, again, you’ve already done it you get to sell a girl on the fact that you know.

Because I know what to expect on the swedish cruise, I know how to make it good for my girl, you’re supposed to have a crazy time for a few hours and have an early night so you can get up and catch the arrival into helsinki while you have breakfast or else you miss out on part of the fun.

Similarly I will have been to angkor wat and know if I take a girl there what to do, thailand, the streets are too stinky and the weather is too sticky to expect your girl to walk around all day, you have to stay at a hotel and plan your day around transport, you’d stay closer to where I was today, between the malls and the main tourist stuff so your girl isn’t walking round these stinky dirty streets, and sees the nice stuff, the nice parks, and thenyou whisk her off to the beaches.

This is what I am paying for, and this is what girls like about being with some rich older guy who knows what the fuck is going on, and makes it all nice so that she doesn’t have to have an issue.

So why are you being so uptight about money?

I just get this feeling suddenly of old ponsonby, not my teenage ponsonby, but the ponsonby that is the adult I wanted to become, rich, smooth, I’m man who’s been around the world baby, and now here we are in ponsonby, maybe at a restaurant that’s ready to close, listening to some music and having a drink and just being happy that life worked out, we can afford nice things, I am an important person, perhaps not in ponsonby, but important enough to know that I follow a lineage of people who have been rich and beautiful in ponsonby, I am no longer seperated from that because I have money, and my sweet companion is hot, even if I had to drag her from around the world, just so I could feel that the weird little kid who was so frustrated, became a cool guy with an enviable life.

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