Posts Tagged With: Vacation

Family Visits

As Mother’s Day comes around I’m reminded of just how lucky I am to have the family I do.

At the beginning of last school year one of my fellow teachers was venting about the frustrations she was experiencing with her family. She hadn’t heard from them in weeks, not since she’d moved to Egypt. They hadn’t called, emailed, skyped, sent messenger pigeons…nothing. I tried to sympathize, but I realized that I had no idea what it was like to not have a supportive family. Sure, we have our ups and downs, but when the chips are down, we’re all there for each other. We call or skype on birthdays, major holidays, and just because. I probably talk to my father more when I’m on the opposite side of the planet than when I live thirty minutes away from him.

By the end of this week, every single member of my immediate family (mom, dad, and two brothers) will have visited me while I’m living overseas. How lucky is that?

There are downsides, of course, to living so far away. I haven’t gotten or given a birthday hug in five years, I’ve spent a few Christmases by myself, and I can’t be there when my brothers or parents need me.

In honor of my amazing family here are some fun pictures of the adventures we’ve had since I’ve moved overseas. More will come after Dad concludes his visit.

Categories: Life Abroad, Travel | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Glastonbury 2014

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68 Thoughts Every Traveler Has On Their Trip Around The World Via Buzzfeed

1. I can’t wait to travel the world.
2. God, I’m nervous. Planning a trip is so confusing.
3. Am I making a huge mistake? Everyone is telling me I’m making a huge mistake.
4. No way! Screw them! This is going to be awesome.
5. I’m going to make a ton of friends and do cool stuff like the Dos Equis guy.
6. What the hell am I going to pack? Did I buy the right backpack? Do I have enough money?
7. Oh well, I’ll figure it out. 
8. Time to go. See you later, suckers!
9. Ok, landed. Now how do I get to the hostel? 
10. Does anyone speak English?
11. I’m already confused. This is tough. 
12.Okay, I made it to the hostel.
13. I’m a travel superhero. This stuff is going to be easy.
14. This dorm room looks nice. I hope no one snores.

Matthew Kepnes / BuzzFeed

15. Time to explore this place!
16. I’m totally lost. 
17. Oh, look I found my way. 
18. I can totally do this backpacking thing. 
19. Happy hour! Time to meet people. 
20. Uhhh what do I say? 
21. Guess I’ll see what’s happening on Facebook.
22. Crap! That creepy guy in the corner snores. I’m never going to sleep.
23. Okay, it’s a new day. Things are going to be great. 
24. Ohh, there is a BBQ at the hostel tonight. Maybe I’ll make friends there.
25. This table looks nice. Will these people let me sit down?
26. They invited me to sit down. I have friends!

Matthew Kepnes / BuzzFeed

27. Wow, I’m really hungover. What a night! 
28. Another happy hour! 
29. Shots for everyone! 
30. Ohh, a cute Aussie is talking to me. 
31. What happened last night? Yikes! That Aussie is not as cute as I remember. Time to sneak out of this dorm. 
32. All my new friends are leaving. That’s okay. I’ll see them again.
33. Probably not. At least there is Facebook.
34. Made new friends. 
35. I have no idea what these Scots are saying to me. I’m pretty sure we both speak English. I’m just going to nod my head and drink my beer. 
36. What is this food? I’m probably going to go hungry on this trip. Everything looks so weird. 
37. Guess I’ll get pasta. You can’t go wrong with pasta.

Matthew Kepnes / BuzzFeed

38. Well, I got sick. I guess you can go wrong with pasta! 
39. Woohoo! Another country. Look at all these passport stamps! I feel cool.
40. I’m spending way too much money on beer.
41. Time for another happy hour. 
42. I love travel! I’m totally a travel expert now. 
43. These conversations are getting a bit repetitive though. 
44. Oh look, new people in the dorm! I wonder where all these people are from and how long they’ve been on the road. Let’s ask them! 
45. Interesting food. I’m going to eat that. I can’t believe I was so worried when I started traveling. 
46. This guy in my hostel is kind of a jerk. No one cares how many countries you’ve been to. 
47. Still spending too much money. I hope I’m going to make it to the end. 
48. Okay, time to start saving.

Matthew Kepnes / BuzzFeed

49. That bus is five dollars? I’ll walk instead.
50. That was a long walk. At least I saved some money.
51. Happy hour! Five dollar beers? I’ll have three. 
52. Waterfall! Woohoo! 
53. Another waterfall? This is getting boring. 
54. More weird food. Who would have thought bugs would be so good? 
55. Two dollar soup? That’s a bit expensive. 
56. Two dollar beer? Perfect. 
57. Well, that was an eventful day. Time to move on.
58. Two more months to go. Time to make the most of this trip. 
59. I can’t wait to sleep in my own bed and see my dog! 
60. It’s going to be weird to go home.
61. More drinks? I’m so sick of drinking. Is that all this is about? 
62. Those people look cool. I’ll go drink with them. 
63. Last week. This trip changed my life. I wonder what home is like. I bet it’s really different. I’m so glad I did this. I changed a lot. 
64. My friends just threw me a huge going home party. I love them.
65. Gosh, I’m hungover. Time to go to the airport. 
66. I’m home! It’s so good to see my friends and family again.
67. Wow, nothing has really changed. 
68. I’m bored. Next trip?

Matthew Kepnes / BuzzFeed

Matthew Kepnes is author of the book “How to Travel the World on $50 a Day”and runs the website Matt teaches people the travel tips, tricks, and advice not found in major travel media so you can travel cheaper, better, and longer to any destination in the world!

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Aswan-Luxor School Trip – Part 2

Sorry to leave everyone hanging, but it’s been a crazy few months here. I’ve been busy with work and blah, blah, blah…

Here’s Day 2 of the trip!

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Aswan-Luxor School Trip – Part 1

In mid-November the middle school Arabic teacher, Mr. A, came to me and invited me to go on a Nile Cruise from Aswan to Luxor in Southern Egypt.


I was sorely tempted, but I would be taking the same trip with my mother less than a week later, so I declined. Later, I found out that it wasn’t just a trip for teachers; it was a school-sponsored trip and Mr. A needed a few more teachers to chaperone the 16 middle and high school students going. Again, I declined. I’m doing the same trip a week later, and I wasn’t sure I wanted to hang around with a bunch of middle and high school students for four days. So, how is it that I found myself packed and ready to leave for the airport at 2 AM on December 22? I’m not really sure, but I’m glad I went.

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