What I Learned in Kuala Lumpur

Seeing what's happening in the world from my safe and cozy vacation bubble is not easy. Admittedly I'm somewhat of a news junkie, so only seeing snippits online makes me feel somewhat disconnected....not always such a bad thing, I know. But it's hard not to feel and hurt and want [...]

Brunei

It seemed easy enough to get there. It seemed simple to get in. It seemed small enough to see everything in two days. So why was I a bit nervous? Perhaps because I didn't know what to expect from a country I've never heard much about and don't know a [...]

Southern Vietnam

When I arrived in Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) I waited for a piano to fall on me or to be eaten by a polar bear. The previous two stops in Vietnam, while interesting and beautiful, were filled with some strange events. So you can imagine that since I wasn't [...]

Central Vietnam

After my slight funk in Hanoi, I was quite happy to fly to Central Vietnam for a new vibe and new things to do. An hour flight to Danang and I was on my way to Hoi An, a UNESCO World Heritage Site about 45 minutes from the airport. I can [...]

Northern Vietnam

When I walked out of the airport terminal, I choked. I literally choked on how thick the air was. My driver laughed. He had probably seen it happen a thousand times. I had been through the same thing when I arrived in Thailand a few weeks before and in Cambodia [...]

Chiang Mai

Over fifteen years ago, my boyfriend and I wanted desperately to get out of our home town and thought that jumping on the teach-English-overseas-bandwagon, which was all the rage at the time, was the answer. We wanted somewhere far away, cheap and exotic, so we agreed on Thailand. Clearly what we lacked in [...]

Bangkok

When my three-day visit to Bangkok turned into only two, I wasn't too upset since I had fairly low expectations going in. I love city life and culture and history and people-watching, but for some reason I pictured Bangkok to be rather exhausting and false, like one big souvenir shop [...]

The storm before the calm….

A few people said to me recently that when a trip starts off badly it means that the rest of it will be fabulous. I think those same people believe that rain on a wedding day means good luck as does getting shit on by a bird. I don't really [...]

Nicaragua

It's sometimes hard to reconcile the double life that I live - part responsible adult, scholar, teacher, home owner, consummate list maker, and perpetual bill payer contrasted with the other part of me, the me I see less often but like so much more - the wanderer, the risk-taker, the doer, [...]

Do What Scares You

We’re all afraid of something even if we’re too afraid to admit it, which by proxy means we are afraid. I can admit that my list of fears includes both the rational and the somewhat irrational. I’m scared of centipedes, flying, liars, driving in the snow, and people who don’t swear – [...]