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One traveller's day-by-day account of a year-long journey through Japan, China, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, America and Canada

"Let's do it!"
"OK, smile... one... two... three..."
(Tongues appear)
The photographer lady didn't look the slightest bit impressed!

The short boat ride saw us arriving like fresh fish inmates on Alcatraz island. Stephen "Sister" James, convicted for heinous crimes against facial and cranial hairstyles, and Katherine "Brother" Colvin, in for running Stop signs all across the state of Florida.

We switched on our Audio Tours at the appropriate point as we entered the former prison. The tour added an extra magical dimension to the rusting, musty place; behind the commentary were eerie sound effects; metal pipes banging, calls and wolf-whistles as you walked along the main strip (nicknamed Broadway).

Over the 35 minutes the tour ran for, we saw the cell of Al Capone and the Birdman, got to step inside both a "normal" cell and "the hole", the solitary confinement block, visited the dining hall, and learned about the escape attempts; how and where they did it (from which cells and using which service tunnels). Fabulous!