I’ve been in a period of transition recently, so it's felt like a natural time to try out some new things, one of which is slowing down. I think a lot of travelers have been through this kind of shift, especially when traveling becomes more of a permanent lifestyle as opposed to just a quick trip to a new place. For me, this change has been a gradual, if conscious choice as I started longing for more of a home-base and the stability it offers.
Slowing down is beautiful because it allows you to get on intimate terms with a place. You can make lasting friendships, really learn the language, feel the textures and rhythms of a place and live so fully even as you’re on the road. For me, this has meant that while I’m learning to speak Spanish more fluently in general, I’m also learning a specifically Mexican, chilango Spanish. It’s colorful, gritty and so playful. I've been getting to know the university, taking a few classes and even doing real-life stuff like going to the dentist!
I’ve also been enjoying the way I’m able to spend my energy in different ways, since I’m not tiring myself out with long bus trajectories, or always worrying about where I’ll sleep and finding a place to eat. Instead, I get to play with living like a local, exploring the myriad of local markets, and cooking, really enjoying being able to prepare my own meals with fresh, local ingredients. I don’t know if you can fully appreciate the beauty of having a kitchen until you’ve been without one for months. Such a luxury. It’s also part of a desire to work more on my creative projects; being on the road is a constant stream of inspiration, but it’s really hard to find the time to sit down and write so I’m working on finding balance. Living in one place, I’m hoping to create new routines and have more time to write and work on new projects.
So when Mexico City started calling to me, I came. It’s intimidatingly large, but the little neighborhoods outside of the center of the city offer calm, each with their own quirky personalities. These are the little details I’m discovering and delighting in now.
An adopted dog, a new year, a trip to Guatemala. It's been a good year!
Litchi’s are in season here. Their peels litter the road and their residue on my hands is sticky and so satisfying. They are sweet and delicate and they saved me on the way up from the castle today.
I came to the sea seeking many things, but perhaps refuge most of all. The sea welcomed me in, her watery arms open as I came to touch her vastness. She witnessed my pain and administered my healing.
Read about a weekend in Tequila, indigenous markets, traditional healing, and chance encounters of the best variety.
There is something in the water, the way it touches us all. I'm floating somewhere about 150 feet offshore from the white sandy beaches of this dry, desert island just fifteen miles off the coast of Venezuela.
It's been years now that I've been dreaming up a trip to Rome, a city that I've spent a long time thinking about, yet knew relatively little about. It is a city of contrasts, between its monuments and its little quirks that go unnoticed by the masses, but these details make up a good deal of its charm.
Norte Dame de la Garde is perhaps the highest point of all Marseille, with a 360 degree view of the whole city; it dwarfs even the tallest of the city's few skyscrapers. The sea is to the south and the mountains rise up on all sides, so that the city sits in a little basin, its urban sprawl halted at the base of these rising mountains.
We surge away from the shore; the land disappears behind us and we lose sight of our trusty Subaru Forester that we’re abandoning for we don’t know how long. There’s a sort of shift, a crossing of some imaginary line as we enter this realm that is apart: a watery world where the sea meets a series of inland rivers, salty sea water mixing with fresh river water.
If you follow the Corniche as far as you can along the sea, you come to a place called Les Goodes. It is here that the road ends east of Marseille, in this little fishing village on the sea where the city cedes to the natural landscape. Mountains rise up behind the village and there are many paths for hiking.
I have long been an ardent believer in the magical qualities of coffee.