These are some of the best posts on my site (in no particular order). Enjoy!
I can’t call myself a backpacker any longer. It’s been a couple of years since I even shoved my entire wardrobe inside of one.
If done incorrectly, there’s a good chance you will have a rather unpleasant ride, or will send the driver speeding off into the sunset with his middle finger erect after you’ve disembarked.
I realized I was pretty much a freak show for writing such an intense letter to a country as if it were my lover. But the truth is, Colombia has had a powerful effect on me, and I owe it to her to publicize the truth here.
I have been blamed for the global financial crisis (yes me, personally). I’ve had to have a guy thrown out of a bar I worked at for being totally disrespectful thanks to my nationality. I was also harassed to the point of me leaving a job overseas because my coworker thought it was so hilarious to take the piss out of me.
The only person guaranteed to be with me for the rest of my life without fail is the woman who stares back at me in the mirror every day.
You would think that after having the same conversations so many times, I would have thought of something witty or interesting or mysterious to say.
After years of continuous travel, what was once thrilling is now ordinary.
I have lost one of the most important people to me. Her passing has left a gaping hole in my life. I’m sad that I didn’t get to say goodbye and tell her how much she meant to me. It crushes me to think that she will never see me walk down the aisle, or meet my children, or share any other big moments with me.
Lying down at the end of the day and considering if I should just move on to a new destination, I realized what was going on. I had a nasty attitude and it was clouding my judgment.
A shirt I haven’t worn in a few weeks, a half-opened Band-Aid, a hair product that’s only half used is immediately given away or thrown out.
What you don’t see is the hours we spend on our laptops, locked up in our hotel rooms, slaving away into the wee hours of the morning trying to get some work done in between sight-seeing and actually being in a place.
While reading guidebooks and talk to other travelers is helpful, there are few better ways to get acquainted with a new country than watching locally made films.
“Why are they let in?” I asked. The terminal obviously had some kind of contract with this particular taxi company, yet these “free agents” were allowed to wander about, attempting to lure weary travelers into their cars.
Instead of saying, “No entiendo,” all the time, I have learned to fake my way through it.
Over the years and the countries, I have come to realize why I wasn’t meeting people – and I’m still learning. Here are a few tips on how I’ve come to meet some of the coolest people on the road.
When I first stepped off the plane onto New Zealand soil, despite my good intentions, I was the picture perfect stereotypical traveler of my homeland. Loud. Culturally oblivious. Geographically inept.
We were invited to wake up before the sun, head to the teepee, and chant/meditate while she lit cow crap on fire. One night over dinner she regaled us with the story of the day she put some of the magical poop in water and drank it to cure a stomach ache.
I’ve been hearing this word “hipster” floating around. It’s been causing me great anxiety for months. Why? I didn’t know what the hell a hipster was.
Once she’s got ample information, she tells me I should not be traveling alone here. I will get assaulted and kidnapped, she says.
I briefly consider my choices. I could be rude. I could beat around the bush. Or I could take a more diplomatic route that would both save me from the photo as well as ending up headless in a river.
I look warily from side to side, the confidence draining from my body like dirty sink water after a hairball has been yanked from the drain. My surroundings look very unfamiliar.
Clapping and hollering at a volume normally reserved for sporting events, yelling at the screen chastising the characters, or any other explosions of emotion won’t be met with the hushing prevalent in other movie theaters.
Every kid that’s developed fine motor skills is equipped with an endless supply of firecrackers, bottle rockets, and other fun maiming devices to play with. Just walking down the block requires a careful calculation of the coordination abilities of these armed and excitable pyromaniacs.