Wednesday, August 24, 2011

If a taxi driver asks you if you've been there before, say yes
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The Lakers

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Land of tourism

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There's something wrong here

Leg problem
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Beautiful Puerto Rico

I'm running out of reasons to ever go back to Spain


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Lessons learned about packing

Glue sticks

More contact lenses
Better flashlight
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I am the master

Spanish help taxi Cartagena
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Hatin' the USA is cool

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Santa Marta is beautiful
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Traveling with people you don't mesh well with is a learning experience
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Plastic playing cards
Asking for directions
Cheap water
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Playa Blanca

Ice cream
Fish, chicken, rice
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Inca Jungle trek

Waterfall from a cave
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Taxi to Tacna

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San Pedro de Atacama and Arica

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Panamerican Highway

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Nicole is everywhere

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Picking at your teeth with your fingers = nasty

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Salar trip

Cementerio de tren
Floating land
Funny perspective pictures
Salt hotel
Drinking games
Orange sunrise
Stone tree
Red water
Freezing cold
Hot springs
Money for sleeping bag
Border crossing
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Mine tour

No teeth
No lamp
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La Paz

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Isla del Sol, Lake Titicaca

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I found the "real" copacabana in Bolivia :)
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Uros and Tequile

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Coca cola used to have small traces of Cocaine in it. Did you know that? I found out at a cocaine museum in Bolivia.
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I had groundhog while in Bolivia. A specialty there. Named cuy in Spanish.
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Can't get no head

I found while in the mountains of Bolivia that no matter how you pour beer from a bottle into a glass, no head forms on the beer. The bubbles pop immediately and it has something to do with the elevation.
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Pisco Sour

Best alcoholic drink I found while traveling South America. Tastes like a sweet and sour vodka but the liquor in it (pisco) costs 5 times less than vodka.
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Everything I do is done for the eventual acceptance of my parents

Blog post from 4/2/09 but never posted:

I woke up with this thought.

It is my limiter.

It keeps me on the straight path, but also a narrow path.

Only when I am physically away from them do I sway from their approval, but only so far so that it is undetected due to the physical separation. Nothing directly or intended to be permanent.

I don't know whether I want to break this limiter or not.

Do I want to completely break the limit to test it? No I don't right now.

Not breaking the limiter makes me happy and it has kept me safely on the straight and narrow path, and I'm not sure if breaking the limiter will make me happier.

So I have to figure out if it's worth breaking using baby steps.

I could judge this on a case by case basis if I could identify something outside the limit that is something I want but they don't.

How do I figure out where my desire and their desire are not congruent? It is not a clear distinction in some cases.

How important is their happiness to me? How important is my happiness to them?
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Chile the island

I found that Chile is sort of an island compared to the rest of South America due to the mountains and deserts that surround it.

There is a slight language difference there. The people also talk very very fast in general, almost like speedy Spanish.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Trust is a near impossible battle with me

Yesterday I was eating dinner with the Danish people from the jungle trip at the burger place, like I mentioned in the other post.

I forgot what we were talking about but I guess the subject of the conversation is not relevant to this post.

Let's pretend it was prices on the food we were eating. They told me the price. I had to check the menu to make sure that was the price. Then Line, the girl, said "you really don't trust anybody do you?"

It's true. I don't trust anyone I've met on this trip really, except for a rare few that I've grown close to. It has to do with the fact that people's opinions have rarely lined up with mine. If someone says a certain location is an amazing place to visit, I don't usually assume they know what they're talking about anymore. My reaction is "I'm sure it's pretty nice but is it worth it?" I used to think people knew what they were talking about, back in July maybe, or maybe just in June when I was doing NZ.

For example, if someone today tells me Ipanema beach is amazing in Rio or using diction like "the best beach ever", I don't believe them. It's because if I do, I'm usually dissapointed. Not many people have seen as many different beaches as me, and we all have different tastes on what makes a beach awesome.

Back in NZ, when someone told me the beach is awesome, I'd believe them. Then I'd go there, and I would agree. But somewhere in Australia things started changing. I think it was diving in the Whitsunday Islands. Someone told me diving in the Whitsundays was amazing, even compared to the Great Barrier Reef. I dived there because of that. It sucked compared to the Great Barrier Reef. I was not feeling well during the GBR dives either. Remember I had that big skin infection and it was affecting my balance?

Add on top of that numerous people that I've come across either trying to steal my money from my pockets or swindle me over the counter or at their cart and my natural propensity to question people, and the product is me. Someone who just doesn't take any opinions or pretty much any statement anymore as something substantial unless it's backed up by a feeling inside of me that they know because they have the experience, they're being honest, or so many people say so that it's gotta be pretty close to correct.

I think what it was was that I started the trip with an open innocent mind about people. I told myself that I would keep myself open to other people and their thoughts. Then reality kicked back in as I got going a month later.

So when I got to Egypt, and someone randomly told me I *must* go diving in Dahab because it's comparable to doing the GBR with the number of fish and coral even though they've never been to the GBR, I nodded and said "ok" but I didn't really believe them. I don't want to insult them, so I don't tell them they're probably wrong, even though that's what I think.

I only believed Mario when he told me after taking his diving classes in Dahab that a few spots were good and the others nothing special. Mario is from Australia and has done the GBR. I just had a feeling his opinion would not dissappoint me.

This post is not about the fact that people are wrong. Right or wrong, it's really about the fact that I can't and don't trust people on a general basis. If I show trust prematurely, I'm feigning it. Like at work with people I don't know. I just do it because I have to. I was that way before I started traveling, and now I'm even less trusting while I'm going from place to place.

Last night was the first time in the last 10 months somebody just pointed that out to me. I was surprised to hear it. I agree though. It's true. I'm sure other people have noticed it, but just haven't said anything to me.

Finishing up some old posts

I have some old blog posts saved in my blackberry that I never posted because I needed time to finish them off first but never got around to them. I'm going to work on them in the near future and post them on here so that I have all my travel thoughts in one location.

Thursday, July 2, 2009


We're eating at a ramen place in San Mateo called Santa Ramen and here's my niece going at it. Haha she's cute.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Have you guys ever checked out this web page? It's like a dictionary on how to say the same cuss words in 3,000 different ways, especially if you're trying to mention the male or female genitals or something else having to do with sex.

It could actually be a handy dandy resource for people trying to figure out idioms and other slang in the English language, which of course would theoretically be a good resource for people like my cousins who are trying to learn English. However, the fact that so much of the site is not exactly a good influence prevents me from freely distributing it to everyone I think it might help. I feel that I have to sort of censor it in my mind and only tell people who I hope won't be negatively influenced by it, especially the younger folks.

Oh no, why did I post this on my blog! Eeks!

I trust that everyone who reads this is mature enough to handle the brunt of the intarweb(s).

If you are ever bored and want to spend your free time reading something slightly educational but mostly entertaining, then just scroll through

Monday, June 1, 2009

Best airplane ride ever

Ice cream on a plane!!

My first meal back

I love my mom and her cooking.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

I'm on my way home :)

It's 9am and I am going through airport security in San Juan.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Things I'm enjoying once again

A really hot shower
Snickers ice cream bar
Taco bell (yup, had it already last night)
Television (I started watching the Hills this morning and then found myself having to force myself off the tv to go to a different beach today. Good thing I never watch tv at home.)
Listening to the radio
Karaoke (last night at the bar)
Not haggling

Friday, May 29, 2009

Beautiful forts

Castillo San Felipe del Morro

Dumb dutchies

Too busy eating cheese and building windmills to win this battle :)

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Vroom Vroom

I decided to rent a car for $35 a day because the taxi ride from the airport to old town San Juan alone was going to be $19 one way so I figured why not.

Driving here is fun. It's good to be in the driver's seat again. American road rules except all the signs are in Spanish. Totally awesome.

I drove into old town, parked in one of the public pay lots for $3 until 6am and then walked to the budget hotel that I had heard about from the tourist information office at the airport called San Juan Guesthouse.

The room will be $37 for tonight but I like it. It's got a big bed and air conditioning. The bathroom is shared. So basically it's a little more than the price of a private room in a hostel in Australia.

The owner of the guesthouse seems super cool. He's fluent in both english and spanish, like most people I've encountered here so far.

He recommended a less touristy place for me for dinner tonight. It's called El Jibarito. I ordered pan baked grouper for dinner and I'm waiting for it now. I exercised some Spanish with the waiter who I think is also the owner and now he is making me only speak Spanish to him so that I might learn some more. That's pretty hardcore of him, I appreciate it.

The city is seriously SO beautiful. I am loving this place already. Someday I will come back here for a month. There's supposed to be good diving here and good ocean fishing as well, for marlins and other types.


My friend Sam (that I met in Barc) called me from Arkansas! That would be my first phone call received in 2009! Haha

Love using my cell phone again :)


Damn I just had to tip the bartender. America sucks!!!


More oddities

I just asked for hot sauce and they gave me Tabasco. Oh the shame of American life.

I keep speaking to the bartender in Spanish because he looks latin and my brain is still in South America. He's responding in English. Hahahha

P.s. Yuengling beer tastes really really good.

Getting used to it again

It's good to see this selection of beer again.

It's painful ordering a Mexican Salad for $10 though. LOL

I'm in Miami!

Currently standing in line at immigration. It's nice to not have to fill out all the forms because I'm a citizen of the country I'm entering, haha.

Also, it's super cool to be able to read both the English and the Spanish on all the signs in the airport. It's like extra credit or bonus points!

It's also nice to see AT&T on my phone.

There was a small spot on my form that asked me to list the countries I've been to before entering the US. When I saw that I literally sighed at the task before me. A woman nearby heard me and asked me if I needed help. When I asked her how to fit 15 countries in the box, she just told me to mark down Colombia and it would be ok.

Soon, I will have 3 hours in the business lounge waiting for my flight to Puerto Rico.

I'm entering the United States today

Wow. What a weird (but good) feeling. I am happy to be going home soon but also wish I had more time.

I can't wait to witness everything I miss, and also see how my trip has impacted my life.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

At the airport again!

Gonna fly back to Medellin today to take my next RTW flight to Miami and Puerto Rico tomorrow. Woohoo! So I'm just staying 1 night.

Santa Marta and it's airport is beautiful. When I come back to Colombia I am definitely visiting.