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Laos: Off The Beaten Path

It’s taken me far too long to learn this lesson, but I think it’s finally sinking in… If I want to escape from the crowds, the chaos, the loud, bustling, maddening tourists that are everywhere in Asia – I need to make my own path. Sometimes, literally. I started my Laos trip in Pakse – … Read More

Cambodia Part 3 – Peace on Earth

“&$%#!!!,” I exclaimed. (Believe me … this is not how I anticipated starting this post … my last from Cambodia and on Christmas Day to boot…). “Where is my iPhone?!”  I posed this urgent question to the lunch table full of my new American friends I had met at 4:30am this morning – the ungodly hour … Read More

Cambodia Part 2 – Turning 100

It was a coincidence really… This morning I got it in my head to count how many days I’ve been on the road. And wouldn’t you know it? 100. 100 days. Whoa. And I will admit it. Today – I am weary. Climbing up and down the deep valleys far in the Cambodian jungles on … Read More

Cambodia: The Nature of the Beast

I never considered myself a hollering kind of girl – but after the scream that escaped when I got electrocuted by the lion fence in Zambia and my joyous cry when I saw the dolphin fly out of the sea in Zanzibar – I suppose I shouldn’t have been surprised when a yelp rang through the … Read More

Eating Vietnam

Since I arrived in this beautiful, complex, stimulating country three weeks ago I have been overwhelmed by its culinary offerings. So much so that I’ve rarely stopped to snap pictures of the amazing plates and bowls and banana leaves full of food placed in front of me. So I apologize in advance for the lack … Read More

Hoi An – On Expectations…

Honestly – I thought I was being punked. I awoke this morning – thrilled that I was about to join a group of people for my first cooking class in Asia. Thrilled because I have been craving human contact … emailing friends recently about the loneliness that has been setting in after countless solo meals … Read More

Struggling in Sapa

“Madam … Um, are you afraid of snakes, madam?” asked Cuong, my young, Adidas jacket-clad, skinny-yet-very-able-bodied Sapa trekking guide. “Ah, well … er… I don’t particularly like snakes,” I responded, looking trepidatiously around the heavy bushes clogging the steep, narrow path we were following. The two tiny Red Dzao ladies who had been trailing us … Read More

Hanoi … Hold On!!!

It is nearly impossible to believe that just 24 (or is it 48?) hours ago I was  strolling languidly along an endless beach in Zanzibar, gazing down at the pure white sand to make sure I didn’t bang my already black & blue toe on another hidden rock. And now I’ve just arrived back to … Read More

Out of Africa

I’ve been dreading this time since the moment I landed two months ago.  This time when I need to say goodye to Africa. As soon as I smelled the faintly familiar smells of this magical place – the warm earth, the charcoal fires cooking various delicacies in open air stalls, the impossible-to-describe scent of the … Read More

Zanzibar – A Glimpse of Village Life

One of the best things about volunteering (and the list is LONG) is getting a “behind the scenes” look at how local people really live. The smells and sounds and sights behind the safaris and sailing trips – these are the bits that really make me feel connected … and alive. And here in Zanzibar … Read More

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