Typical. Just when you think you’ve bitten the bullet and set off on a solo-adventure to “find” yourself, you end up meeting some handsome German guy who sweeps you off your feet. I spent years looking for that guy in a bar only to have him encroach on designated, uninterrupted “me” time. On the whole, having a dashing foreigner pick me up over a bucket of booze at the full-moon party wasn’t all that bad, but to this day, I can’t watch “Good Morning Vietnam” (pause for a moment of reverence in memory of the late and great Robin Williams) without clenching my teeth and raising a shaky fist in the air with feigned annoyance. Here’s why.
The Happy (solo) Traveler
It all started in Bangkok. I had been traveling for a few weeks by that time, working my way up from Singapore and passing through Malaysia via Malacca, Langkawi, Penang and Kuala Lampur and avoiding tourists like the plague. I had set out alone, created a map of where exactly I wanted to go and what I wanted to see, and was determined to stick to my guns. I rose with the sun and returned around dusk when it became less than ideal for me to wander around solo. Now, don’t get me wrong, I met some fabulous people along the way who were great for dining after dusk (hats off to Julia and Patricia, two of my favourite Germans of all-time); sharing a gondola ride up Penang hill (because 3 white people being stared at is way less awkward);or embarking on a chaotic adventure involving waterfalls, a crazy Russian, a couple of newlyweds and an island with no taxis. But honestly, on the whole, I absolutely loved the parts of my trip where I just wandered around alone for what seemed like hours, stopping to grab sugar cane juice in a bag from this hole in the wall or some pineapple tarts from that little bakery just around the corner. I was on a mission to take charge of my own life, making my own plans and doing so well, until… he came along. Continue reading “Why My Husband (Still) Owes Me a Trip To Vietnam”→
Welcome back to “Street Eats”, the series where we share our favourite street food from around the world. Grab a plate and join in!
Street Eats in Cambodia
Today, we’re skipping from Thailand and the deliciousness of Mango Sticky Rice to the neighbouring country of Cambodia. Unfortunate as it is, I have to admit – when it comes to street food, Cambodia doesn’t necessarily top the charts, or my charts anyways. While I always found something to eat while dining along the riverside in Siem Riep or after touring the magnificence of the Ankors near Phnom Penh, I can’t say I went in search of Cambodian street food during my visit to what is otherwise an incredible, incredible country.
Not my bag of spiders
Why didn’t street food in Cambodia appeal to my seemingly picky palate? Reason #1 would be that I don’t particularly enjoy fish. And by “not particularly”, I mean I hate it. With a passion. And unfortunately – from Fish Amok to the famous Khmer Curry (which can be served with beef or chicken) – there is a lot of fish floating (more likely being carted) around on the streets of Cambodia. Reason #2 would be that another specialty found along the streets, in the markets, and alongside the bus routes is insects, which after reading my post on Street Eats in Thailand, you’ll know I don’t rush to ingest. These babies (grilled tarantulas) were at a bus stop en route from Siem Reap to Phnom Penh. Would you, or wouldn’t you?
So, what exactly did I sample off the streets of Cambodia? Well, let me tell you, it wasn’t the rat-on-a-stick, or the snake-on-the-stick being sold on the streets of Siem Reap. Nope, in a warm southern country such as this, I chose to indulge in the vegetarian lifestyle and stuff my face with the sweetest – and most beautiful – fruit I have ever had. So, my vote goes to… Continue reading “Street Eats, Cambodia: Mangosteen or Rat on a Stick?”→
Live life to the fullest and experience as many cultures and see as many sites as possible — at least that’s what I learned from watching “Eat Pray Love.” After seeing the film I was inspired to travel and take in as much culture as I could. When I was a young girl, I always dreamed of traveling: to see giraffes and elephants roam free, taste the mouthwatering cuisine in France, have a different pen pal in every country.
Now, years later, I finally started living out my dream. I’ve experienced new cultures and cuisine in Europe, surfed the North Shore in Hawaii and became friends with complete strangers in Texas. When preparing for a trip, I plan and research my destination. I’m going to take an Asia cruise this summer, and have already mapped out must-see landmarks and booked exciting excursions to try.
1. Visit UNESCO World Heritage Sites
Asia is home to some of the world’s most iconic and spiritual places ever recorded in history and features more World Heritage Sites than anywhere else in the world.
The Great Wall of China is one of the most iconic landmarks in the world and is the largest man-made structure in the world.
The Taj Mahal is the highlight of India and one of the most beautiful structures in the world.
Ayutthaya is a beautiful city and was once the ancient capital of Thailand from 1350-1767 AD. Visitors flock here every year to wander the ruins and gaze at the city’s beauty. The most-visited attraction is the sandstone head of an ancient Buddha statue. A nearby tree grew around it, crushing the statue’s body but mysteriously leaving the head. Continue reading “Authentic Asia: 5 Things to See and Do”→