With my project in Estonia moving at a snail’s pace, towards the end of November I once again agreed with my team to go remote until the project was ready to go live. So where to go? Since I had all my cold weather clothes, I figured I’d keep it cold and go even farther north. I’ve seen the Northern Lights before, but there was something intriguing to me about going up to the Arctic Circle for a couple weeks before heading home for the holidays.Continue reading To live is to war with trolls
I enjoyed my first trip to Georgia, but happening in late fall and early winter the conditions weren’t the best to see the mountains and nature it has to offer. I loved it regardless, so the wine, food, and the prices of everything were another good reason to come back. Visiting in July this time, tourist activity would be a bit higher and I’d have an opportunity to see some things I had missed on the first go. Continue reading As sweet and clear as moonlight through the pines
As the years ware on, I get increasingly worse about taking photos. Like, really bad. I have so many nice pictures from my first trip to Estonia; I guess that’s why I figured I didn’t need to take any more of the main attractions. It’s not as if they’ve changed much in 3 years. But anyways, I flew to Estonia to start a job, to actually move to a place and have a sense of permanence for the first time in years. Continue reading That test you passed… not everybody does. Welcome to the afterlife.
Going into 2019, I was in the mood for familiarity. It just wasn’t the time for ambition, so rather than navigate deeper into South America or try to deal with the Wifi at some seaside town, I opted to keep it simple and put myself in a position to live near the beach and get some work done. So for the first few months, Playa del Carmen (so the family could come down and get their dive certifications) and Mérida (for after they leave, because I heard it was chill) were going to be the major basecamps. Continue reading I paint flowers so they will not die.
Ah, Macedonia, the second to last Eastern European country I haven’t been to. Had to visit before they changed their name to North Macedonia to appease Greece. They voted on it while I was staying there, and the vote failed. So Macedonia it is, and no NATO. Continue reading Not all of us can do great things. But we can do small things with great love.
After I got dad on a plane (actually he got himself there via tram super early so I didn’t even wake up), I decided to stay in Prague for another week since I liked it better this time. The apartment was really nice, and having a beer garden a 5 minute walk away is handy too. Continue reading Wanna thrive in the dust of the universe
I’m writing this about 5 months after the fact, so expect it to be a combination of poorly remembered things and complete fabrications. But I’ve been posting on here for years, so it would be a pity if I didn’t at least make a minimal effort. At least for this one, I’ve got pictures. Continue reading If i could run across the beach into my own arms I would
For whatever reason, it didn’t occur to me when wandering my way onto the ferry from my sleepy Spanish surf town that when I wandered off things would be much different. So landing in Tangier, Morocco, was a bit of an assault on my world. Port cities are never really great (Belfast), and Tangier appeared to be no exception, although it grew on me in the fleeting moments of my time there. Continue reading This is a precious moment. It is a little parenthesis in eternity.
I came into Barcelona with rather high hopes. Not exactly sure why. Heard mostly good things about it I guess? But my initial impression is underwhelming. The fundamental reason, I think, is that I just don’t get it. I’ll say it: tapas are just overpriced tiny foods. And I don’t understand the appeal of all these outdoor eateries – just because you put an umbrella up doesn’t change the fact that you’re just eating on the street. Continue reading The trick is to enjoy life, accepting it has no meaning whatsoever.
I’m writing this considerably after the fact, so my recounting will likely be a list of facts rather than interesting anecdotes about the trip. But it’s not like I can skip posting pictures of Machu Piccu, so here we go. I promise to be better in the future. Continue reading Reading is a protest against the insufficiencies of life
Why wait? I figured I’d start the year in a new place, so to Costa Rica I went. With a few days before my family arrived, I stayed in San Jose for a couple days, which isn’t nearly as bad as people said it was. Stayed in the University Area and there were a couple very nice hostels. Mostly people landing and then leaving in the morning, but the WiFi was good, so that’s fine by me. Continue reading See, here I am now by myself, talking to myself. That’s Chaos Theory!
I had decided to come to Yerevan to get the rich cultural experience and see the surrounding natural beauty (the flight to NYC was cheaper from Yerevan than Tbilisi). Upon entering Armenia, it was incredibly snowy, and it only got snowier throughout the week. So, I opted to just stay in the city center rather than venture out on treacherous, freezing day trips. Continue reading Honey, would you put a bumper sticker on a Bentley?!
I’ve been sick for more than a couple weeks now. Not terribly sick, just a cough, mildly soar throat and runny nose, and the occasional minor headache. Pretty annoying, and my “red eye” flight to Tbilisi didn’t exactly help. I left at 9:45pm, had to change in Riga, and arrived in Tbilisi at 4:25am which included a 2-hour time zone change. Not exactly a good night’s sleep, and then I was too early to check in (even after waiting at the airport until 9am) so I had to leave my bag and wander around the streets of Tbilisi for a few hours.
I managed to avoid any excitement my last couple weeks in Riga, sticking to my familiar walking paths and coffee shop hopping. I did take a walk over to the markets on the weekend, which were quite large and busy. One building was completely filled with meat – did not last long in there. But I wish I had gone earlier, as there were huge stalls of vegetables as well.
I decided to enter the social realm for a few days, booking four nights at a hostel in Riga to start off the trip. The password at the hostel was “justonebeer”. Which of course is “just one beer.” But I’ve been drinking very little and listening to questionable music, so I thought it was just a weird spelling of “juston ebeer”. Surely, a mistake anyone can make. Thankfully, I did not say this aloud so my reputation as someone with some dignity remains intact.
I haven’t been a very good tourist here in Tallinn, just kind of settling in quickly given my extended stay. I’m nearly 20 days in, and I’ve done a ton of walking around, but not a lot of going inside to see things. I can appreciate the reserved Estonian mentality, everyone keeping to himself/herself and more or less ignoring everyone else. Fitting just in, I’ve managed to go this entire time without having a conversation with anyone, despite everyone speaking good English.
Continue reading It’s a war over my tangerines
I flew into Portland for a little vacation on my way to Seattle this time to see if it lived up to the show’s hype, and it more or less did. Hipster, but not as comically so of course. But it’s the land of craft beers and not real jobs and tattoos, as far as I can tell. Continue reading I guess people are just cropping out all the sadness
Finally back home to Seattle. Home this time being a Hacker House in Wallingford, which turns out to be a fairly nice area between the hipster lounge that is Ballard and Fremont and the University of Washington. It’s an annoying 10 minute walk anywhere, but past that I don’t have any complaints. The common room of the house has a bunch of nice desks, and it overlooks Lake Union. Continue reading Let’s drive to the country side, leave behind some green-eyed look-a-likes
A lovely 9 hour night bus ride along twists and turns got me to Pochutla. I took a shared taxi to Puerto Angel, then a taxi from there to Mazunte, where I plan to stay for at least a couple days. It’s supposed to be a lazy beach area. I only paid 65 pesos, unlike those suckers who paid 150 at the bus station and didn’t get to walk through Pochutla or Puerto Angel.
I haven’t been cafe-ing as much, plus there aren’t as many opportunities to do it. But I did find a good one in Oaxaca so I feel I should mention it. It’s Café Los Cuiles, and I had breakfast here as well as some famous Oaxacan hot chocolate (made with cinnamon), and partook of their lovely setup and fast WiFi. Let’s be honest, I really just like the fast WiFi.
The San Pedro Sula airport had a Dunkin Donuts in it, so it’s one of my favorite places now, highest per capita murder rate or not. Even so, I skipped to the last few pages in each of my books, just in case. The flight to Roatán was less than an hour, and I found my hostel easily before strolling along the boardwalkish area. It’s beautiful, but hot and humid. So hot. Continue reading Jeez, I’m out of it for a little while, everyone gets delusions of grandeur!
I had planned on staying in San Pedro another week, but after a Spanish class that wasn’t ideal and a notification that there would be no power in San Pedro for an entire day, I decided to just head back to Antigua. So I did that, stayed in a nice hotel to get some work done, and planned out the rest of my life. Continue reading But second chances are rare. Right? And that’s worth celebrating
The three hour shuttle from Antigua to San Pedro La Laguna wasn’t exactly a fun one, but we got there. Up and down a volcano. Around a lot of windy roads. I sat next to a Montanan (?) and chatted with her the whole time, one of those free-spirit types that was going to San Marcos, the next town over, for a yoga training and retreat. Continue reading I’m tired. I thought I just needed a night’s sleep but it’s more than that.
Back to the land from which democracy, for better or worse, spawned. So there’s a bit of an obligatory awe you’re required to feel putting things into perspective, even though what you’re really looking at is pretty worn out rocks. So maybe I’m crazy for being a little underwhelmed by the ruins, but so be it. Continue reading It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it
A rainy day in Berat kept me cooped up most of the day getting some work done, then I took a bus from Berat to Gjirokastër at 2. The bus driver took two breaks, one to sit down and eat, on the 4 hour journey (in the middle of the afternoon, mind you). So because I didn’t get in until 6, I decided to stay two nights here instead of one to give me enough time to look around a bit. Continue reading Because when all was said and done that was the price one paid for sincerity
Worked most of the day in Kotor since there was only one bus that went, and it was at 3:15. So I took the nearly 4 hour ride in a small bus that seats about 20 with a group of locals through the Montenegrin countryside. Apparently Zabljak is not a popular destination this time of year. As I dozed in and out of conscience staring out into the dark, it occurred to me how comfortable I had become with a situation like this, which not long ago, and to most now, might seem rather concerning. Only way to get around though, if you ask me. I mean, they’re on the Euro, how bad could it be? Continue reading Every Allied country gave me a medal, even Montenegro
I started my new, lonely Dubrovnik experience with a walk down to the new town and through the harbor. On the way back, I stumbled upon Cafe Bar Art and had a couple cups of coffee while I worked on my computer. It was colorful and quirky, with bathtub seats and odd decorations. Whether that’s your taste or not, it was a great place to chill out and have a coffee or a beer, so I might go back. Continue reading Though I would treasure your friendship, I’m mainly interested in your facility with murder
My venture into the Balkans was on an 8-hour train ride through Hungary and Serbia to Belgrade. It was a long train ride during the day, but I somehow managed to sleep on and off for the entire trip. What didn’t occur to me is that I should buy some food, so I kind of forgot to eat the entire day yesterday (paired with the fact that it’s not easy to find vegetarian food in Serbia. Continue reading Life is and will ever remain an equation incapable of solution, but it contains certain known factors.
Paris was essentially a catchup and recharging point for me. Dad had a couple day trips, and I more or less worked and did a couple walking tours on my own. While I wasn’t in the best of moods, I found Paris to be dirty, unfriendly, and lacking of general WiFi options – the latter upsetting me more than the first two combined. Continue reading A multitude of people, and yet a solitude.
After picking dad up at the airport around 7am, we had about 2 hours to burn before we could go to the Blue Lagoon. I decided to drive the peninsula the long way and check out the coastline, and then we arrived in Grindavik and got coffee while we waited. The owner of the coffee shop, Bryggjan, was as nice as he was adverse to putting vowels in the name of his business. He gave us some local tips to see some cool things. Continue reading We’re still pioneers, we’ve barely begun. Our greatest accomplishments cannot be behind us.
Reykjavik is a small city with a townish feel, so it’s not as if there’s an absolute ton to do here. So I’ve predominately spent my time working, actually getting things done on time that is, and almost getting ahead a bit as I look to do more traveling over the next few weeks. Don’t want to start that from behind. So this is largely a story of working in Reykjavik. Continue reading I do not allow that a being gifted with thought and will can allow himself to despair
Finally back to this great cesspool into which all the loungers and idlers are irresistibly drained. My main goal this weekend was to try to get some work done and survive jet lag. I was marginally successful.
I hardly spent any money, just walked through the Portobello Market for a bit on Sunday and got some Venezuelan burrito sandwich thing. Walked through Kensington Gardens and saw all the expensive houses and consulates/embassies, and strolled through the main part of London a bit too. But mainly relaxed and caught up on some Netflix. Continue reading Cover your crystal eyes And let your colours bleed and blend with mine
I decided to AirBnb in Seattle, so I rented a Condo just off the train line between the airport and downtown Seattle in Othello. It’s about a 15 minute ride into the city and it’s much cheaper than staying directly downtown. Plus it comes with a gym, rooftop area to cook and relax, and it’s close to a couple parks to run. Overall, a pretty good location. Continue reading I am looking for a dare to be great situation
This is beginning a series of posts that are purely for posterity so I don’t forget where I’ve been or something. My picture archives aren’t great, so you’ve got to deal with what I’ve got.
Now that my brother lives in Maryland, we went to visit him and went to Philadelpha, Wilmington, and Washington DC in the process. Continue reading Cat in the wall, eh? Ok, now you’re talking my language.
Wednesday was a work day, but I balanced things pretty well. Worked from early until around 3pm, and then I met up with Laurens and we rented bikes for a few hours and rode down to Ojo de Agua, some natural spring on Ometepe. It was a serene place, just hung out in the water, read for a while, and relaxed. Continue reading I had nothing to offer anybody except my own confusion.
After a full day of toiling to get my phone case off, which was successful Thursday morning (finally), it turns out the SIM card is just behind the volume adjustments on my phone. Figures. Anyways, I bought a new SIM card, added some minutes, and I now have a working Nicaraguan phone number. Continue reading Violence has been Nicaragua’s most important export to the world.
As a seasoned traveler, my bravado has apparently gotten out of hand and I arrived in Granada rather unprepared when it came to actually getting to where I needed to be. Of course I don’t know any Spanish, but I had the address on my phone and showed it to the taxi driver. We headed towards Granada (which is like a 45 minute drive), speeding around in his deathtrap with a dysfunctional seat belt. Continue reading It’s no big sin to stick your two cents in If you know when to leave it alone
I went to 1000 Figs for lunch and had a falafel pita. It had a lot of asian foods in it that I didn’t know, but I enjoyed it. Other than that, my post-Mardi Gras activities have started and ended with sitting in the apartment with a cold and headache. Either I’m sick, or a 4-day collective hangover is literally killing me. Continue reading And I will look down and see my murmuring bones and the deep water like wind
I didn’t feel like working today so I took a streetcar down to the famous Garden District. Sandra Bullock has a house there, so I figured maybe I’d run into her and we’d really hit it off. But then I’d probably resent her success and feel awkward when she took me to nice restaurants and bought me presents – favors I couldn’t return. Plus, she’s like 50, which kind of poses a long-term problem. So ultimately I decided just to leisurely stroll through the upper-class neighborhood of charming architecture. Also, I don’t really like Sandra Bullock. Continue reading Good morning America, how are you?
A day of taxis and planes, entwined with Atonement and newspapers, finally had me arriving to my new home in New Orleans. It’s right on the Bayou, just off a streetcar line in a nice area, so it’s pretty convenient. After getting settled, I was told to go to Krewe de Vieux, the locals parade to kick off the Mardi Gras season. Continue reading Don’t you just love those long rainy afternoons in New Orleans when an hour isn’t just an hour
Hilton Head Island has been rather calm, as I intended. So that works out nicely. I was able to get a lot of work done and start trying to take the next step with the business, so I consider that productive. However, it doesn’t make for particularly enjoyable updates here. It’s just like, a normal blog of my life, which would be excruciating if forced to consume those pages on a regular basis. Continue reading And I’m not askin’ to be loved or be forgiven
So I’ve now been in Hilton Head 10 days, and have finally begun to explore the island a little bit more. My pattern resembles that of shipwrecked seafarer marooned on a deserted island slowly making wider circles around his home base searching for things. Except my reason is mostly laziness. Continue reading Oh! Ian Knows All About Hilton Head!
Found the hostel without much trouble. Stayed in for the night, wandered around the neighborhood for a bit to get my bearings on where I am relative to the main shop area. I more or less remember it from when I landed, and I’m not very far from the center so the location is pretty good. Continue reading You can get a story from everything you touch
I arrived in Amsterdam on Sunday evening. I’m staying out of the center of the city closer to the museums, which is kind of my preferred way to do things. The hostel I’m staying in is very small and cozy, which is kind of a nice change.
With only a few people there, you’ve got to talk to everyone and the hostel people are much more personal. One of the workers there took us on a walk down to the center of the city, actually it was more like a trek. We had a beer at some Australian place, then a more authentic Dutch bar, and then a more touristy bar in the red light district area. Continue reading My thoughts are stars I cannot fathom into constellations.
Didn’t end up doing the official walking tour, but did some more exploration on my own of the old town center. I went up the tower in the center of town and took a couple pictures. This is the New Town Hall in Marienplatz. Inside is the Rathaus-Glockenspiel which lots of people enjoy watching. Continue reading If you gaze long enough into an abyss, the abyss will gaze back into you.
Thursday did not involve anything special, as the weather was terrible and I wanted to get some work done. I did walk over to Partenkirchen to see what that half of the town had to offer, and it was much in the same as Garmisch. Some nice little shops. With the cold weather and rain, more and more snow had accumulated on the mountains, making it a very pretty time to be there.
I checked out of the B&B fairly early on Friday and hopped on a train to Munich. I’m staying at a hostel a few stops from the main area, so it was a bit of a walk. Once I was checked in, I used the rest of the day to work, only straying a little ways from where I was and making plans for what to do in Munich. Continue reading I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious.
I woke up in my clothes at 4am, checked out, was at the airport by 5:15am, and landed in Berlin at 8am. Their transit wasn’t too hard to figure out either, so I dropped my stuff at the hostel around 9 and then strolled around for a few hours. I do a lot of strolling. There were some museums and palaces and old structures and stuff that I looked at. There was also someone with bubbles. I saw a little girl fall off a statue and cry. I had a bagel at Dunkin Donuts for breakfast because I didn’t know how to say any of the German stuff at the street fair. Continue reading Get some rest, Pam. You look tired.
My time in East London had come to an end and I was moving on to the next hostel. Just to change things up, really. So I checked out and spent a little time pouring over work in the coffee shop next to the hostel before setting out to find the new place I’m staying in South London. Continue reading To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often.
So a couple hours after arriving in London, I ran to the bathroom in a Pret a Manger and had my phone stolen while I was in there. Which I’m annoyed about, but not really that upset. It was a piece of crap, but it’s still an inconvenience. At least he/she didn’t take my laptop or passport, which were also sitting right there. Mainly, that just means I won’t be taking any more pictures. Continue reading I always had a repulsive need to be something more than human.
On Friday I started off by visiting a start-up hub in the city. Someone there gave me a tour and showed me everything that was going on. It was alright – not as exciting as I was hoping, but still pretty cool to work in that kind of environment.
Big surprise, it was raining Wednesday morning, so I decided to forego my plans for another walk in Howth Head. After getting a bit of work done in the hotel, I got an early start on my travels, taking the DART to Dublin and then a bus to Belfast.
Belfast is dirty. But they have a lot of nice coffee shops and affordable places to eat, despite the fact that I have to switch back to £’s from €’s. The hostel I’m staying in is small but nice, WiFi in the bedrooms which was great because I had a couple important calls today I needed a great connection and quiet for (which went well). So this place has worked out well for my “working and travelling” plan. Continue reading I cook the world’s best duck flambe
There are really only a few things to see in Kilkenny, so I figured I might as well get up and see them. I went up to see St. Candice’s Cathedral and Black Abbey. Unfortunately, they were both closed so I just kind of walked around like an idiot. Continue reading I want to take shelter from the poison rain
As much as I wanted to do Ring of Kerry and Dingle, I decided to skip them and just move on. So I rose bright and early in Killarney and got on a bus towards Cahir.
After a couple hours on the bus, I arrived at Cahir Castle. It was, of course, raining. The guy at the desk let me stow my bag so at least I didn’t have to carry that around, and then I walked around the castle. Continue reading Some day you will be old enough to start reading fairy tales again.
After another relaxing day of work, jumping hostels and getting settled in I decided to finally hit the touristy trips. My main concerns right now are my fingernails, which are growing uncomfortable and I can’t find clippers at any of these convenience stores. In other news, my beardcation growth is substantial and it’s now at the point where it will become increasingly ragged. I’m going all Paul Bunyan on Europe. Continue reading Boys I ain’t never seen nothin’ like a Galway girl
The last couple days I’ve spent working and relaxing in Galway, striking a balance between toiling away on my computer and strolling through the quaint streets. The slower pace and smaller city is more to my liking, making cameos on the edges of tourist pictures as I sit near the ocean eating a Gelato (probably the best 3€ I’ve ever spent). Continue reading If I ever leave this world alive I’ll thank for all the things you did in my life.
Stepping off the ferry, I could almost smell the locals’ hatred for what the rest of the world has done to St. Patrick’s day. Not that they don’t enjoy the holiday, but it isn’t a reason just to get hammered. Even I couldn’t help but cringe at some of the tourist ensembles (most of whom I assume are college students here on break). Continue reading Being Irish, he had an abiding sense of tragedy, which sustained him through temporary periods of joy.
I had another pretty unimpressive day, from a tourist perspective. Also from a regular person perspective. I mean, I went to a Starbucks. And a Caffe Nero. Two chain coffee houses in one day (I had a lot of work to do today, so forgive me). Continue reading I had neither kith nor kin in England, and was therefore as free as air.
So yesterday I overdid it and wore myself out too much, so today I relaxed a bit more and worked a lot to make sure I got everything done I needed to. And I didn’t quite finish, because I work a lot anyways, so I need to work a bit more tonight and tomorrow morning to catch up for the weekend.
Anyways, yesterday I walked about 20 miles. That might be a low estimate. I don’t know why I walk everywhere; it’s kind of stupid. I also get lost walking everywhere, which adds to the problem. Continue reading After all, I’m just a girl, standing in front of a boy, asking him to love her.
Like the rest of the world, things don’t really open until at least 9 on Saturday. I actually had trouble finding a coffee shop to work in (I was out of the hotel at 7), but eventually found a place to get some work done. Continue reading Chapter One. He was as tough and romantic as the city he loved.
I do enjoy visiting Manhattan. The bustle, the sea of skyscrapers that block the sun, the endless list of things to do to keep the mind occupied. The way people don’t bother me. But I adore it in the way that I adore art; I respect and admire it without wanting to become it or immerse myself in it permanently. Sure, I could live there for a while, but the sun would certainly set on my ability to handle it. It’s why I didn’t move here a few years ago when I had the great job offer. Continue reading Chapter One. He adored New York City.