Posted in #MyGlobalLife, Travel

#GlobalYou365 Challenge – October

October #GlobalYou365 Challenge by Small Planet Studio, is now complete. I got a little behind on this one. But it is now done. You can now read the questions and answers for October!

Small Planet Studio‘s #GlobalYou365 Challenge was created as a “reflective challenge for global adventurers in re-entry” to aid travelers navigating the often choppy waters of returning home from abroad. This Challenge consists of a question a day and is a tool that can be used to help you create a lifestyle that accommodates both your abroad self and home self. Usually it is used for those coming home, but I sought to use the Challenge in reverse, as a great opportunity to reconnect with my traveling self to create a more global lifestyle today. You too can take the challenge by clicking here.

Advertisements
Posted in #MyGlobalLife

#GlobalYou365 Challenge – September

September #GlobalYou365 Challenge by Small Planet Studio, answered in real time. Woot! You can now read the questions and answers for September!

Small Planet Studio‘s #GlobalYou365 Challenge was created as a “reflective challenge for global adventurers in re-entry” to aid travelers navigating the often choppy waters of returning home from abroad. This Challenge consists of a question a day and is a tool that can be used to help you create a lifestyle that accommodates both your abroad self and home self. Usually it is used for those coming home, but I sought to use the Challenge in reverse, as a great opportunity to reconnect with my traveling self to create a more global lifestyle today. You too can take the challenge by clicking here.

Posted in #MyGlobalLife, Travel

#GlobalYou365 Challenge – May, June & August

I am finally caught up!! I am finally in the month I am currently living for the #GlobalYou365 Challenge by Small Planet Studio! You can now read the questions and answers for May, June and August!

Small Planet Studio‘s #GlobalYou365 Challenge was created as a “reflective challenge for global adventurers in re-entry” to aid travelers navigating the often choppy waters of returning home from abroad. This Challenge consists of a question a day and is a tool that can be used to help you create a lifestyle that accommodates both your abroad self and home self. Usually it is used for those coming home, but I sought to use the Challenge in reverse, as a great opportunity to reconnect with my traveling self to create a more global lifestyle today. You too can take the challenge by clicking here.

Posted in #MyGlobalLife

#GlobalYou365 Challenge – April & July

It’s a two-fer! I wasn’t enjoying the process of always looking to the past while working on the #GlobalYou365 Challenge, so for the month of July I simultaneously answered the questions for April while also being present for July. I enjoyed it much more and some projects/ideas were triggered. I’ll probably do this until I’m caught up so look for May & August and then June & September in the coming months. Hopefully by October, I’ll be completely present. You can see April’s questions and answers here and July’s here.

 

Small Planet Studio‘s #GlobalYou365 Challenge was created as a “reflective challenge for global adventurers in re-entry” to aid travelers navigating the often choppy waters of returning home from abroad. This Challenge consists of a question a day and is a tool that can be used to help you create a lifestyle that accommodates both your abroad self and home self. Usually it is used for those coming home, but I sought to use the Challenge in reverse, as a great opportunity to reconnect with my traveling self to create a more global lifestyle today. You too can take the challenge by clicking here.

Posted in Domestic Travels, Quests, Travel

New Capitol Hit! Trenton Making, Atlantic City Taking

And this time in the year 2016!

I live in Upstate New York. New Jersey is right there. And yet I had not been to its State Capitol building. Until February when a first time trip to Atlantic City for a Brandi Carlile concert included a return trip by way of Trenton. My family did drive through Trenton on our way to visit my dad’s family in Virginia Beach when I was a tween. I remember my dad pointing out the “Trenton Makes the World Takes” bridge, which I was familiar with from watching the film Stealing Home at way too young an age. Tangent: This movie was the reason I always thought when you added rum to coke that it would taste smooth, less carbonated and like cherry coke – a lie and I hate rum and coke. Also, Sabrina, the Teenage Witch’s Aunt Zelda is topless in a scene. Image when years later I watched an episode of that wholesome goodness and then asked myself why that one lady looked familiar to me…

Back to this trip.

Since I started dating my partner three years ago, food has become a prime focus of our trips. I cannot complain about this direction/attention shift in destination research. Soon after we arrived in town and did a drive-by tour of the main strip, my partner “Yelp-ed” us an awesome place to eat. The Iron Room was tiny, swanky, and served delicious and unique tapas. Our favorite was the bacon. We also enjoyed their Udon Mac & Cheese, Deviled Eggs, Croquettes and Hangar steak. We were very sated for our concert.

1916447_10100541487342191_8130103859742393078_n

The next day we went to see the boardwalk. We didn’t last long. It was February after all.

IMG_7034

After warming up in the car, we headed for Trenton. It would be about lunchtime when we arrived. After almost being blown off my feet, capturing the Capitol building from a couple angles and being reminded a bit of Albany, NY by the historic buildings lining the road around the Capitol, we headed north to Rozmaryn Restaurant for some simple, fantastic Polish food.

We both ordered the Polish Plate comprised of potato pancakes, pierogies and kielbasa, and the White Borscht with kielbasa, hard-boiled egg and potatoes. Another nondescript and unassuming restaurant creating remarkable food and providing excellent service.

IMG_7040IMG_7046

Check out these photos and those of other US Capitols from my quest to see them all.

 

Posted in #MyGlobalLife

#GlobalYou365 Challenge – March

I’m really trying to catch up now on Small Planet Studio’s #GlobalYou365 Challenge. March is now complete. I am still making this a thoughtful process to achieve my goal of figuring out what my global lifestyle looks like for me at this time, but to help speed things along, I am going to work on the current month (July) alongside a previous month to have more real-time answers. Check out my third month of questions and answers here as I figure out what #MyGlobalLife looks like.

 

Small Planet Studio‘s #GlobalYou365 Challenge was created as a “reflective challenge for global adventurers in re-entry” to aid travelers navigating the often choppy waters of returning home from abroad. This Challenge consists of a question a day and is a tool that can be used to help you create a lifestyle that accommodates both your abroad self and home self. Usually it is used for those coming home, but I sought to use the Challenge in reverse, as a great opportunity to reconnect with my traveling self to create a more global lifestyle today. You too can take the challenge by clicking here.

Posted in #MyGlobalLife, Reading Material, Travel

Travel Narratives

In my travel shop, amongst the postcards, luggage, journals, posters and maps, will be a section devoted to travel narratives. I love this section of bookstores, though I am finding them to be shrinking in size, if a store even has one. One of the reasons is probably because many travel narratives crossover into other genres: non-fiction, outdoor, fiction, history, even children’s literature. Navigating the definition of travel narrative can be subjective. It’s easier to just have a section of guidebooks.

Well, in my shop, I’d use my own broad definition of travel narrative and reclaim the stories and have them all in one place. Bill Bryson would be next to M. Šašek, which would be next to Jack Kerouac, which would be next to Robert Louis Stevenson. But in alphabetically order, of course. I want someone coming into my shop to see these book and allow these authors to instigate curiosity, trigger memories, pique interest, further research, challenge assumptions, and induce warm fuzzies.

With this section of my future travel shop in mind, I started a list of those books that have done the above for me. You can check out what I have entered so far on my new Reading List page.

As I am always looking for new books to read, please please please comment with some of your favorite travel narratives.

Posted in #MyGlobalLife, Travel

#GlobalYou365 Challenge – February

Creating a more global lifestyle is important to me, particularly as I have been in a traveling drought for a while now. I know I won’t always be able to take trips when and where I want and for how long, so keeping a connection to the me I become while traveling is proving to be crucial to my overall happiness and life satisfaction. So check out my second month of questions and answers here as I figure out what #MyGlobalLife looks like.

Small Planet Studio‘s #GlobalYou365 Challenge was created as a “reflective challenge for global adventurers in re-entry” to aid travelers navigating the often choppy waters of returning home from abroad. This Challenge consists of a question a day and is a tool that can be used to help you create a lifestyle that accommodates both your abroad self and home self. Usually it is used for those coming home, but I sought to use the Challenge in reverse, as a great opportunity to reconnect with my traveling self to create a more global lifestyle today. You too can take the challenge by clicking here.

Posted in Domestic Travels, Quests

New Capitol Hit!

…way back in 2013. I made this trip during my three-year void of blogging. I did upload the images getting set to post then but my heart wasn’t in it. But now that I’ve renewed my quest to see all the state capitol buildings, I am ready to share about this one and this trip.

I had gone to visit a good friend, guest blogger Nicole, who lives in the greater Philadelphia area,for a long weekend. The trip was much needed and, of course, it was great to reconnect with my friend. I had been to Philly a couple of times with my family, but I was looking forward to seeing it with my friend’s then boyfriend, now husband Jay, a Philly boy, born and breed.

The trip south had a few delays, one being that President Obama was having press conferences/meet ups along the interstate. I did catch a glimpse of him, or someone who looked like him, standing at the podium at a stop just off an exit ramp. Having seen that made the waiting more bearable.

But once I arrived, the trip quickly turned into a Philly Foodie trip much to my delight. It started with having a huge plate of fries covered in both “Old Bay and garlic” flavor and cheese whiz. The next day was Benjamin Franklin day. While touristing (that’s now a word) downtown, we stopped at The Franklin Fountain to cool off with some ice cream (I recommend the Lightening Rod sundae). Then we headed towards Independence Hall and made our way to Square Burger in Franklin Square. That night I was introduced to water ice. The morning of my departure I learned about scrapple and pork roll, both of which I tried. Pork roll, okay; scrapple, well I’ve tried it.

After breakfast I hit the road. My first detour was Ikea. My second was Harrisburg to see the Capitol. It was a massive complex. The day was sweltering and I really wanted to go in the fountain. This was another of the few state capitol buildings so far that have deserved a shot of the back side as well.

Check out all the Capitols I’ve visited here.

IMG_2681IMG_2670

 

Posted in Quests, Travel

The Itch to Get on the Road

I love London. I love Ireland. I love Europe. But where I’m itching hard to go is on a cross-country road trip around the U.S. I might be romanticizing and Hollywood-izing, but I want that sense of freedom. I want to use actual, physical, pain-in-the-arse-to-fold maps. Or to just go by road signs, if I want to. I want to stop at whatever scenic overlook I want because time is not of the essence.

I want to explore. I want to see small places and big places and eat the best food in nondescript buildings and stay in tents, in Route 66-throwback motels, in B&Bs, and even on a couch or two. I want to work toward fulfilling my quest of seeing all the Capital buildings.

I want to work on breaking down my shell and making connections with people. Lend a helping hand and, most likely, be lent one as well. I want to show myself that I am capable of doing certain things, things I know deep down I could – if I HAD to – but in my daily life feel anxious about having to endure. To be brought closer to the self I know is in me, that is the real me. Waiting.

Always waiting. That’s what I feel my life has been like since my last major trip. But it has less to do with the transformative nature of travel and more to with building up my own self-confidence, self-reliance, and courage. I just like to use the best catalyst I know when I feel really stuck. Travel. And then perhaps the waiting will stop.