Eat Like a Local: Food Tour in Bangkok

I love eating like a local when I travel. Well, okay. I’m not as dedicated as Andrew Zimmern, whom I adore for his cheerful and ardent pursuit of unique morsels the world over. I haven’t yet found myself in a desert sampling the local insect cuisine, but I did earn a compliment from a Singaporean when I ordered fish ball soup at a hawker center (or open-air food court) during my recent travels.

She smiled broadly and said, “Ah, you are brave! Good job!” Continue reading

Follow Your Heart: Sigue a tu corazón

Email excerpt from October 15, 2014 (two weeks before I left NYC to embark on an open-ended travel adventure.)

Mrs. O: “Follow your heart.”

Me: “My heart says ‘Go to Spain and communicate with the outer world only by posting photos on Instagram.’”

Mrs. O was being serious and I was being flippant… mostly. My heart was telling me to go to Spain. Or rather it was telling me to get the heck out of New York City, my home for the previous 15 years, and explore the world without commitments of any kind. Continue reading

Tiny Blue Mushroom

On the Road Journal Excerpt
Date: March 23, 2015
Location: South Island, New ZealandTiny Blue Mushroom WM2

Every day of this New Zealand trip has been unique and inspiring in some way—whether it was stunning scenery and the moments in which these sights clear all the clutter from the mind or the small intimate exchanges in conversations with new friends (near strangers) that turn new corners in your head and tell you something new about yourself and your path. It’s like eyeing a tiny vibrant blue mushroom in the moss on a log—whether you discover it or someone helps you see it. Or, it’s like knowing the name or a fern or a tree for the first time. The otherwise beautiful, but unknown and new landscape becomes nameable and suddenly more intriguing for receiving that small bit of knowledge. 

Vivir Es Encreible: To Live Is Incredible

I came around the curve, and stopped, inhaling sharply. My legs were accustomed to keeping the rapid pace they had mastered over many years in New York City, and with the abrupt halt, my feet slid on the gravely path—the sound rattling the quiet afternoon. I held that bit of air preciously for a moment as though the entire mountain might vanish if I let go.

The words ‘Vivir es encreible’ escaped with my whispering exhale.

To live is incredible. Instead of staring at the brick wall outside an office window in Manhattan, I was gazing at a mountain-perched abbey on a gorgeous fall day in Spain. I was five weeks into an adventure that would last eight months and take me to 10 countries. And in that moment I understood for the first time since I left that I had created a new reality. Continue reading