Turning 30- A Search For Meaning in Varanasi, Part One

This is the first installment of a four part series about my journey to Varanasi, where I celebrated my thirtieth birthday… I turned 30 in India. In the holy, chaotic, colourful, and surprising city of Varanasi. It’s not a coincidence that I celebrated this milestone in a place where pilgrims flock from all over India and the world. I suppose I was on a pilgrimage of my own, though  refused to admit it for fear of sounding clichéd. It was a time … Keep reading…

The Fear of Selling Up

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I’ve mentioned before that Tyrhone and I are selling our apartment to allow us to follow our dream of long-term, indefinite travel and adventure, and on days like today, the idea totally freaks me out.  But this is something that we have wanted to do for a long time, and when my company offered voluntary redundancy to anyone that wanted it, it was as if the universe was speaking to me saying, “it’s now, or never.” Never is too horrible a thought to … Keep reading…

Visiting The God of Small Things – A Journey to Kerala’s Backwaters

I read Arundhati Roy’s heartbreaking, funny and tragic The God of Small Things: A Novel during my first year of university. I loved it. Those close to me who are reading this are probably rolling their eyes thinking, “is she still going on about that bloody book?’ It is my favourite novel of all time. I have owned many copies. Earlier this year, I would have told you that it is the only book I have ever read twice. That was … Keep reading…

A Change of Priorities

An award winning chef has opened a branch of his famous restaurant here in Perth, where the steaks are aged longer than most of the staff, and the wine is priced higher than liquid gold. The other day, a dear friend was disappointed that I wasn’t going to be joining her for this dining experience. She inquired whether or not I was depriving myself of great experiences that I would usually jump at, to achieve this goal of traveling long … Keep reading…

How Do I say Goodbye to This? Leaving Loved Ones Behind

Olivia fashion

This is my niece, Olivia, the coolest person I know. Sometimes I look at her in such awe, at how someone so small can have such a strong personality, such a clear sense of who they are. I love her. She has brought so much joy and lightness to our family, and she has taught me a lot. As we prepare to embark on our ‘Indefinite Travel Adventure’, one of my main concerns (aside from selling every possession I own, including … Keep reading…

Do I Own My Home, Or does It Own Me?

As I have mentioned in previous posts, Tyrhone and I are making big changes in our lives. Early next year, we are setting off on an adventure- to travel indefinitely, without an agenda, except to experience whatever comes our way. Now this throws up all kinds of questions- what if we don’t like it? Fail? Have trouble making money? Get homesick? Most of these questions are irrational, and come from a place of insecurity and fear, all easily overcome by … Keep reading…

Trekking In Nepal With Food Poisoning: The Hardest Day of My Life

I’ve always prided myself for having ‘guts of steel’ when it comes to foreign food in foreign countries. Bali belly? Never had it. And if I’m completely honest, when I hear about people getting sick from the food or water when traveling, I label them, well, kinda soft. Or at the very least, not the well traveled, cultured, ‘citizen of the world’, like, say, me. Well, the joke was on me, when, on the very first night of a twelve … Keep reading…

The Death of My Twenties in Varanasi, India

Varanasi Holy Man

I said goodbye to my twenties in Varanasi. India was somewhere I had always wanted to go, but was terrified of. Stories of filth, poverty and chaos filled me with anxiety, and yet, I was drawn to the place. So, instead of throwing a party, and paying for other people to get drunk, I decided to face my fears and experience this mysterious, crazy country first hand. When I told someone I would be spending my 30th birthday in the … Keep reading…

The Thing About Stuff Is…

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A few years before my Nana died, she started giving away her stuff. Returning it, in fact. If you had given her something- a nice teapot or fancy dish perhaps, you got it back. She even started giving family photos back to their respective people of origin. She was perfectly healthy, and had no intention of going any time soon, but for some reason, she felt like getting rid of her stuff. … Keep reading…

Confessions of a Hammam Virgin

Last night Tyrhone and I went through some of our old travel photos. That set off some reminiscing, and has definitely strengthened our resolve to change our lives and set off into the world to see where it takes us. I thought I would share an experience I had in Istanbul a couple of years ago.  It was the end of a two month overland-and-sea journey through Greece and Turkey. I was in desperate need of some pampering… … Keep reading…