Guest post by Avani Miriyala
For American Thanksgiving this year I decided to get a little unconventional and swapped feasting on delicious food and chattering away with my amazing family (who I absolutely love, don’t get me wrong), with the land of rice paddies, Nintendo, and green tea: Japan!
My boyfriend, Tushar, and I planned this trip for months and we anxiously counted down the seconds until November and our Asian adventure! We challenged ourselves to pack light, bringing two 55L backpack for our 14 day trip. As a first time backpacker, it was quite a challenge to fit all my cute travel outfits into only 55 liters!
As it turned out, jamming a lot of stuff into small backpacks was a fitting metaphor for our time in Japan!
Welcome to the first ever Verity’s V’Bomb!
WTF is that, exactly? I feel uncomfortable.
I’ve pulled together a shortlist of the cool things I’ve found or explored lately to share with you! Don’t worry, nothing that will get you arrested I think.
For having clocked in around 45 countries it’s wild to think that I’ve only been south of the equator once, with my most recent trip rounding out that pitiful number to two. Moreover, I don’t know why it’s taken me this long to discover how completely incredible South America is (spoiler: it’s my new travel obsession). Regardless, the seal is broken and I’m in love.
As I learned recently on the West Coast Trail, life doesn’t always go as planned. It’s important to plan for the unexpected so when things inevitably go sideways, you’re ready. Of course like most lessons in life, I came to learn this the hard way!
We’re taking a different approach to our latest blog post here at BRBdoingstuff because writing a conventional article about an unconventional activity doesn’t make sense. Also, revisiting the Great Hike of 2016 gives us some serious PTSD flashbacks. So get ready for our most honest, straightforward post to date. (That’s why it’s a little late… we’ve been putting off writing this because it is equal parts humbling and emotional)!
Spoiler alert: don’t try this at home!
The biggest misconception about vagabonding is that it requires travel. To set the record straight once and for all — vagabonding is a mindset, not a destination. You can apply vagabonding principles like curiosity, being present in the moment, living light, and approaching new things with an open mind at home just as well as you can in the most remote corner of the world.
With that in mind, I’ve been spending time exploring my own backyard in Austin, Texas. The literal backyard is a work in progress as I’m attempting to become an urban farmer (more on that in a future post), but my more figurative backyard is proving rich in opportunity and adventure — Enchanted Rock, Fredericksburg and Luckenbach come highly recommended!
After a wild weekend in Calgary with girlfriends I needed some reprieve, or at very minimum an activity that didn’t revolve around tequila. The Rocky Mountains called and I was anxious to get in some outdoor multi-pitch climbing during the exquisite Canadian weather window between late Spring and early Fall.
Guest Post by Care Bach
Although I’ve always loved exploring other cultures, I must admit that from time to time some American bias kicks in and I think the U.S. does things a little better. However, that perspective was instantly challenged the second I set foot in France. During a recent trip around the country with my family, I was pleasantly surprised to find that when it comes to living life the fullest it turns out the French know exactly what they’re doing!
It’s cheeky to claim that you’ve mastered anything by the age of 30, but when it comes to Canada’s West Coast Trail it’s safe to say that I’m approaching expert status. In a few days I will formally claim that title by hiking it for the fifth time… alone. For those of you considering the trek, or any multi-day excursion, I’ve pulled together a preparation guide (and video!) to help you hike with your best foot forward.
I’ve spent the lion’s share of my last year poking around places far away from Austin, and it wasn’t sitting right with me. People travel from all over the world to see legendary Texas and the very proud, somewhat outrageous, residents it houses. Ask anyone around here what country they are from and the answer will usually be Texas. And the crazy part about that? People abroad know exactly where that is.