ABCs — Art, Booze & Central Chile

If you caught my latest post about Patagonia, you’ll already know that I didn’t want to leave. Although I don’t believe that all good things must come to an end, my trekking down south was sadly bound by a return flight to Santiago a week later. I left behind a mountain of unfinished business.

Reminder to self: this is an excellent example of a travel planning fail and why you should resist the temptation of scheduling everything ahead of time. Knock that shit off — you know better!

But, the good news remained that I had another week to kick around central Chile to explore the coast!

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Kon’nichiwa from Japan!

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!

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As it turned out, jamming a lot of stuff into small backpacks was a fitting metaphor for our time in Japan!

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Verity Conrad, Mountaineer

During the biting Calgary winter of second grade, our family left Alberta’s foothills in the rear-view as we drove west to British Columbia. Weaving between the extraordinary Rocky Mountains along the Coquihalla Highway, I pressed my nose against the cold glass window for hours on end in wonder and amazement. I’m so small and inconsequential next to these sleeping giants, I thought.

Now, more than 20 years later, the enchanting pull of the natural world has intensified and become even more irresistible to me.

Perhaps it’s a deep curiosity to learn the stories the mountains tell, or maybe it’s a desire to feel closer to something tangible, part of something bigger than me, but when I’m in the presence of the mountains I connect with the raw pulse of my very existence.

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A Crater of Critters

Here’s the deal with Tanzania’s Ngorongoro Crater (other than it’s prohibitively hard to spell.) A dense population of the world’s coolest animals is trapped in a 14-km long sunken volcanic crater by the boundaries of said crater, oh and also by surrounding agriculture and mean people who kill the aforementioned coolest animals (because don’t fuck with my goats!)

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Welcome to my Blog!

Here’s the skinny: a few months passed since my sister and I spoke last. Although I decided some sibling-related breathing-room was needed, I really missed her. When I picked up the phone this afternoon and dialed her number I got uncharacteristically nervous – accelerated heartbeat, the works. Her enthusiastic hello was comforting and my apprehension melted away.

Groovy little sister being all enlightened and free-like.

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