Thanksgiving overseas: chocolates and rasperry beer in Bruges

Growing up in the Midwest, my Thanksgiving was the traditional spread of turkey, stuffing, and pumpkin pie, devoured at a relative’s home in suburban Chicago. But I grew up to be an inveterate traveler and spent the holiday in many places—one of the best was the historic, colorful Belgian city of Bruges.

Several years ago I was serving an internship at the US Embassy in London, and received a four-day weekend as per federal law. … Read more »

Posted by | Comments (1)  | November 28, 2013
Category: Europe, Expat Life, Food and Drink, Notes from the collective travel mind, On The Road, Travel Writing

How to Find Love Abroad: Test Yourself

“C’mon, try it.” They floated in a thick, dark sauce. The nails had been cut off, but the rest of each finger stared back at me without eyes from the plastic plate, livid in vinegar. Truncated joints just below the feathers’ line. As I kept staring at my prospective dinner, I wondered how low a man can go to impress a pretty girl.

“So, will you try one?” Her eyes were inquisitive windows open on … Read more »

Posted by | Comments (1)  | November 28, 2013
Category: Asia, Food and Drink, On The Road, Sex and Travel

Vagabonding Field Report: Largest Market in Central America – Chichicastenango, Guatemala

largest market central america chichicastenango

Cost/day: $40/day

What’s the strangest thing you’ve seen lately?

Ancient Mayan religious rites being performed in a Catholic cathedral… a unique blend of religions that tells stories about a part of the world with a conflicting history. 

largest market central americaRead more »

Posted by | Comments (1)  | November 27, 2013
Category: Central America, Family Travel, Images from the road, Vagabonding Field Reports

5 Reasons to stay home


I’ve been talking a lot lately to folks who are pushing hard towards their dreams. They’re working the equivalent of two full time jobs to break free from the one they’re sick of to change their whole lives. They’re courageous folks. But then, she goes out for drinks with a sister who ends up getting a whole … Read more »

Posted by | Comments Off on 5 Reasons to stay home  | November 26, 2013
Category: Lifestyle Design, Vagabonding Advice

Nellie Bly, A pioneer in female solo travel

In 1885, a young lady just 21 years old read an article titled “What Girls are Good For” in a Pittsburg newspaper. Her written response to the paper impressed the editor so much, that he offered her a job as a writer, with the pen name “Nellie Bly”. Nellie went on to prove that women had brains, heart, and courage to do anything that men could, despite what the article had previously reported.

Nellie began … Read more »

Posted by | Comments (2)  | November 25, 2013
Category: Female Travelers, General

In global cities, the distinction between traveler and local is being erased

“The rigid distinction between romantic world travelers and a locally based, sedentary population is rapidly being erased. Cities are no longer waiting for the arrival of the tourist — they too are also starting to join global circulation, to reproduce themselves on a world scale and to expand in all directions. As they do so, their movement and proliferation are happening at a much faster pace than the individual romantic tourist was ever capable of. … Read more »

Posted by | Comments Off on In global cities, the distinction between traveler and local is being erased  | November 25, 2013
Category: Travel Quote of the Day

Double Life by Don Blanding

My friend Clark sent me this poem recently. 

It was a timely delivery. My Dad and I have been discussing this very thing: the desire to live multiple lives simultaneously, our deep wish to be in more than one place at a time, the bittersweet frustration of the knowledge that we can do anything we want with this one, beautiful life, but not everything we want. Choices must be made.

Read more »

Posted by | Comments (2)  | November 19, 2013
Category: Travel Quote of the Day, Travel Writing

Lauren Collins on the drawbacks of European party tourism

“A concentrated influx of tourists can be a welcome boon to an economy, or it can be a pestilence. “I have always been proud to be British, but these degenerates are dragging us through the mud,” Michael Birkett, Britain’s vice-consul in Ibiza, said, before quitting his job, in 1998, in disgust at the behavior of his countrymen on the island, which he likened to that in Sodom and Gomorrah. After EasyJet began flying to Prague, … Read more »

Posted by | Comments Off on Lauren Collins on the drawbacks of European party tourism  | November 18, 2013
Category: Travel Quote of the Day

Why I hate “family friendly” travel

Cycling Martha's Vineyard With Kids

As the mother of four children and an avid traveler can I rant for a minute about how annoyed I am by the term “family friendly” as it relates to travel?  

On the surface, you’d think it was a good thing, wouldn’t you? “Family friendly” should mean welcoming to children, accommodating … Read more »

Posted by | Comments (1)  | November 12, 2013
Category: Family Travel