All posts filed under: Travels

Lost in Translatopn

My heavy feet dragged their way through Tokyo Narita Airport, my brain was still somewhere over the Pacific Ocean – in the plane’s bathroom where I mistook the mouthwash for soap and scrubbed my hands with it – and would hopefully catch up with me later. It had been a long flight and the free Singapore Slings seemed like a good idea at the time and why is this soap burning my hands? “Konbanwa!” The lady behind the front desk said as I walked through the automatic doors. “Konbanwa!” I repeated back to her like a drunk parrot. I hath not known what I said, nor where I was. I squinted under the bright lights and nodded while she spoke words I would never understand. Then she bowed and handed me a locker key and a bag containing slippers, a tooth brush, and a giant grey night shirt. She placed her pointer finger to her lips, then to a door with  a “quiet, please” sign on it. I bowed back to her, opened the door and entered the …

Forever Day

As the the morning sun shone over Nairobi National Park, we stuffed our faces with breakfast, stuffed the trucks with bags, stuffed our faces with second breakfast and began our journey into the wild – a road trip split up over two days. Because one does not simply walk to the Maasai Mara. I watched Nairobi’s concrete jungle get smaller and smaller in the review mirror until the skyscrapers looked like towers for ants. Ahead of us, The Great Rift Valley waited patiently for our arrival. What’s a few hours, when you’ve been around some 25 million years. This 6,400 km long crack in the Earth’s surface has stacked up quite the resume over those millions of years. It reaches from Northern Syria to Mozambique in East Africa, almost broke the continent in two, and has some of the World’s deepest fresh and salt water lakes. Africa’s tallest mountains call it home, Astronauts say it’s the most significantly visible detail on Earth from space, it’s lined with active and semi active volcanoes, abundant wildlife, horizonless …

Osheaga

“I wasn’t going to come, but then my friend was like, you gotta live.” No truer words have ever been spoken by my dear friend Danielle. You’re damn right you gotta live. And so every summer we go to a music festival, where we sleep on floors, eat from trucks, sing at the top of our lungs and dance so hard we nearly pass out, sometimes we do. But most importantly, we live…like degenerates, mind you, but man is it ever fun. And by the end of it all, we are exhausted. Reality looms in the distance after escaping it for days. I must return to the land of shirts that cover my belly button and toilets that flush. My back hurts, my voice sounds like Lindsay Lohan in the morning, and I have PTSD from porta potties. All I want is to be horizontal in my bed, but instead I have to spend 11 hours on a bus with no bathroom. Everything hurts. I regret nothing… We arrived in Montreal just as the sun was going down, it …

Kenya: Part One

A few months ago, if you were to tell me that I’d be flying business class to Ethiopia, I would have asked you to kindly share the drugs you were on. Why on Earth would I be going to Ethiopia? And business class? Are you out of your mind? I don’t own a business. I don’t even own a hairbrush. But alas, there I was at 10 in the morning, drinking champagne in motherfuckin’ business class, on route to Ethiopia, with 37 dollars in my bank account. You see, this was not my seat that reclined four different ways, nor was this my trip. It was my dad’s and I stole it from him. Or at least that’s how it felt when he couldn’t go and I took his place. I was a con artist, goodbye Meredith, hello Miss Hardie in seat 3A. Only I broke the one rule every good con artist knows – don’t draw attention to yourself. Which is pretty easy to do when you are dressed in full safari gear. You know how people wear Hawaiian shirts …

Amsterd – am I okay?

Good gurlz go 2 heaven, bad gurlz go 2 Amsterdam. Corinthians 4:20 I’m a good girl. I wear sweats and go out less. I don’t have glasses of champagne on the dance floor and I tend to hang out with girls I’ve seen before. But in Amsterdam, things were a little different… (Shout out to the indie artist, Champagne Papi, for helping with the lyrics) Ever since I left the city, ooh That’s got a reputation for weed now Everybody knows and I feel left out Man you’ve got me scared, I’m really stressed out ‘Cause ever since I left the city, ooh Where strippers wear less and show off way more Put things up their vaginas on the dance floor Doing freaky shit I’ve never seen before My mom said call me on my cell phone Late night when you need my love Call me on my cell phone Late night when you need my love I know when my cell phone rings That can only mean one thing I know when my cell phone rings That can only mean …

From London, To London

Over the years, I’ve come to realize that friendship doesn’t know distance. I’ve also come to realize that a lot of my stories have to do with me being drunk and/or incredibly hungover which makes me question some of my life choices, but whatever. I was on the train from London to Birmingham, last night’s hair in a tangled mess, resting peacefully on my faithful companion – my inflatable neck pillow. I had gone to a techno-rave thing the night before till 5 am and could still hear the beats echoing in my ears. Joey, Libby, George and I (sounds like the name of a British band) were finally reunited last night in the name of techno. It had been two years since we were all in the same room together and it felt so good to see their faces and hear their laughs. Man, I had missed them. We met when they were on exchange during my last year at University in London, Ontario. It’s hard to imagine University life before they came along, …

Juan Night Only

We spent our last day in Seville (“Sa – Vee – Ah” for those who want to sound a little pretentious, but also correct) melting in the palace gardens drinking wine we smuggled in…well, I guess you can’t really call it smuggling when the security guard smiles and waves you in as your wine bottle(s) slowly pass through the x-ray machine. Ahh Spain, I love you. After two weeks in this beautiful country, we had the Spanish lifestyle – the Tapas, Siestas and Vino(s) part – down to a fine science. We were really starting to feel like locals, so it seemed fitting to spend our last night in Spain doing something local. Plus, you can only go to so many pub crawls before you find yourself walking home with one shoe saying things like, “techno is life.” As the sun went down the wine drinking continued to our hostel’s rooftop where we met Juan; he had a smile that reached to his ears and a single dreadlock that reached to his waist. Born and …