A Traveler’s Terrene

You only live once. What are you going to remember the most?

Daily Challenge: Listen to New Music November 16, 2008

There is something about music that can make a bad day turn great or an ordinary moment suddenly feel exciting.  Your ears perk up, your foot starts tapping, and your body moves to the beats or your mind relaxes to the harmonic rhythms that vibrate through the air. Music is like another world like an ocean. There is so much variety of tunes out there it is an endless sea of exploration.

I couldn’t live without music, however, if your anything like me, the DJ’s on the radio cultivate my taste in music rather than me venturing to find new beats and genres.  My challenge to myself and all of you is to explore a new genre of music.

Here is a list of Afro artists and Afro dance music that my backpacker friend Alex, music knowledge extraordinaire, put together for me:

Afro Artists:

Baba Maal
Papa Wemba
Oliver Mtukudzi
Johnny Clegg “White Zulu”
Ladysmith Black Mambazo (men’s choir)
Miriam Makeba (60’s afro-jazz)

Afro Dance Music and Videos
Lopele (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tpaFn5D0cQI,

Kwaito-the clubbing music of southern Africa http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tRm3lhFRttU



Afro Rap: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rq0tOycu-ug&feature=related

Southern African music dance called Kwasa Kwasa

Happy Listening! And, THANK YOU Alex for the awesome recommendations. If anyone else can recommend other Afro artists (or any great artist/bands in that case), leave a reply on this post and we’ll put together a long interactive list of stellar tunes!


Daily Challenge: Explore New Terrene November 15, 2008

You don’t need to quit your job, sell you things, and put everything in storage (ahem, or your parent’s garage–thanks mom and dad!) to make your life into a Traveler’s Terrene.  If you have the time, ambition and finances to do so I would definitely encourage this route as it gives you the most flexibility, freedom, and sense of adventure; however, it may not be practical if you have a mortgage, kids, school, a great career (the list goes on…). Yet, remember that these strings that tie you to an area, do have slack. Sure, you may not be able to jet off to a foreign country or cross an ocean, but you can explore the state and city you live in to get the same sense of adventure that comes with discovering the unknown.

How often is it that we live in an area and the tourist sees and knows more about our own city, because for us it is home not a destination?  I challenge you to transform the city you live into a destination.  Go to the tourist information center and play tourist for a day. After you do that, pick up a map and take a day trip to a nearby city that you’ve never been to for the afternoon. And, if you say you just don’t have time to do even these little things, then simply drive new routes on your way to work, take a bus and watch from the window or go running in a new direction–you’ll be surprised at all of the new little discoveries you find that are even a few blocks  away from your home because you are finally taking the time to LOOK, as tourists do, rather than travelling from point A to B as residents do.

Tonight I am off to Parma. I’m taking my little silver Fiat, a road map and hitting the highway in quest for some unexplored terrene.

Where are you going?


Star Jumping and Toyota Kicking the world! November 14, 2008

Yesterday marked my 9 month anniversary of leaving Seattle to travel around the world!  It was an experience of a lifetime, an epic adventure. I freed the explorer inside me that has been restless since my childhood days when I explored the world in my backyard. I finally had the courage to say to that little voice…go on…PLAY! IMAGINE! CREATE! The world is your playground I told myself, it is a Traveler’s Terrene.

So here I am nine months later with some 50 gigs of photos, unforgettable memories, and a global network of new friends.  I couldn’t have asked for a better experience. From the people I travelled with on different legs of the trip: my older brother “Mohawk Mark” (2 months in New Zealand), college friend and dance extraordinaire Brian (3 weeks in Thailand), my childhood next door neighbor and “Sister Zesma” Suzanne (5 months throughout Southeast Asia, Turkey, Croatia and Italy), my adorable Italian former roommate Ilaria (2 weeks in Milan and a long weekend in England) and the countless backpackers I met along the way where we travelled together for a few days before parting ways (you know who you are…I HEART you…and there are too many too name!)  

At some point I’ll upload a wide selection of photos to Picasa and send a link, but for now, here is a snapshot of my trip as I Star Jumped and Toyota Kicked across the world!