Plenty of parties for Carnival

Trinidad CarnivalGot a craving for Carnival? If you can’t get to Rio, don’t just give up and stay home. There are plenty of places in Mexico and the Caribbean, from Mazatlan to Dominica, to celebrate the annual bacchanal. And there’s still time to get there!

The Mazatlan Carnival lasts six days (in 2010, it’s from Feb. 11 to 16), and is centered along the Paseo … Read more »

Posted by | Comments (5)  | January 29, 2010
Category: Central America, Food and Drink, South America

Western artists pursue their muses in China

The stereotypical Western expat in China is the investment banker in Hong Kong or the executive doing deals in Shanghai. On the other hand, the creative set has also been setting up shop in the Middle Kingdom, according to this New York Times article: For China’s Western Expats, Creative Lives of Plenty.

Five artists are profiled, all of whom have plugged into the rising dragon. There are certainly many benefits, such as the low … Read more »

Posted by | Comments (1)  | January 29, 2010
Category: General, Notes from the collective travel mind, Travel News

The power of eyes

Sikander (Besham, Pakistan)

Besham, Pakistan

Early on in Khaled Husseini’s book The Kite Runner, the main character says, “To this day, I find it hard to gaze directly at people like Hassan, people who mean every word they say.” The reader can’t read this line without conjuring up some mental … Read more »

Posted by | Comments (3)  | January 28, 2010
Category: Images from the road

A parrot in your pocket who twitters in your ear

pirates-of-the-caribbean-grouopSome of the original vagabonders were captains at sea who dared to sail between the shipping lanes, tacking between storms and Men-o-War. Rebelling against dependency and striking out on your own was a pirate’s reason for living. Perhaps their methods were suspect, but we can admire their decision to forsake the familiar shackles of society in favor of the … Read more »

Posted by | Comments (10)  | January 28, 2010
Category: Notes from the collective travel mind

Five types of annoying travel partners and how to deal with them

backpackgirlsSometimes, despite the most careful screening, you may find yourself stuck with a travel partner that you just don’t mesh with. Maybe circumstance threw you together, or perhaps you just didn’t realize how much you differed in your travel styles until you were on the road together. But now, you’re locked into at least a few days of travel … Read more »

Posted by | Comments (8)  | January 27, 2010
Category: Vagabonding Advice

Escaping the cult of stuff

stuffchartUnless you were born into money, your travels are probably funded like mine — by scraping together what you can and doing without many of the gadgets, luxuries and stuff that your friends are likely accumulating and, yes, enjoying.

Some people take pride in this (possibly forced) asceticism, others find it difficult. Certainly stuff can be fun, but it can also get in the way … Read more »

Posted by | Comments (7)  | January 26, 2010
Category: Money Management, Simplicity, Vagabonding Advice

GLBTQ destination du jour: Nepal

With the Ugandan anti-gay death penalty legislation raising international ire (like Sweden cutting $50 million aid funding), and Argentinian transvestites suffering kidnapping and torture by the local police, it might feel like the whole world’s against gays these days.  Even Thailand’s famed gateu-i, while widely accepted on the street, are required by law to maintain their birth gender on ID cards, leading to discrimination and humiliation.  So where’s the next out-and-proud GLBTQ … Read more »

Posted by | Comments (3)  | January 26, 2010
Category: General

Carnaval de Dunkerque 2010


As the Nord-Pas-de-Calais region begins to shake off its wintry stranglehold, France’s epic Carnaval de Dunkerque is already underway. Dunkerque is a small city in the North of France, right along the Belgian border. The festivities are a longstanding tradition whose roots trace back hundreds of years to Shrove Tuesday. Shrove Tuesday was a day of celebration and … Read more »

Posted by | Comments Off on Carnaval de Dunkerque 2010  | January 25, 2010
Category: General