Gezellig Doen in Central Mexico

My second and third weeks in Mexico formed an uncomfortable, linguistically pubescent transition as a language learner and a traveler. In cultural terms, I’d finished my soft segue in comfy Americanized Monterrey with my overprotective adopted Mexican family, so culture shock wasn’t such a concern. In…

Bebé’s First Words

Crossing into Mexico was the first time I’ve really been nervous or scared while traveling, for a couple of reasons. The first and lesser is the obvious one: if you turn on the news in the US (and occasionally in Europe), you can’t avoid stories…

Transitioning through Texas

My last few days in familiar territory on the road from NOLA to Bogotá were spent in Texas. It’s a state that demands enough attention that Americans have strong opinions one way or another about its culture and politics, and familiar enough outside the US that most of its…

72 Hours of Hitchhiking

I only hitchhiked for the first time in August last year, but I instantly fell in love with it. In the twenty or so times I’ve jumped into cars with strangers in Western Europe, the Balkans, and now the US, I’ve sat next to a lot of…

A Few Reasons New Orleans is Still my Favorite American City

Last week I left Tallahassee, FL on a $9 Megabus to New Orleans, the city that put the ‘NOLA’ in ‘NOLA to Bogotá’. This makes my fourth visit to the Crescent City, and this time it was colder than it was in Holland, a few degrees below…

Backpacking the Hispanosphere: NOLA to Bogotá

When I left Holland this October, my intention was to travel a bit through the Balkans and London, go spend a month or so with family in Florida, and then by the end of December fly south to Colombia where I would teach English in…