Life as a Nomad: Winter 2016

These wrap-ups are for me to share personal tidbits — the little things that make up my life abroad; stories and photos which may not otherwise see the light of blogging day. See previous months here. If I could sum up this winter in one word, it would be validation.  For months I’d been wondering if I […]

Slowing things down: Where I’m moving in 2016

There was once a time when friends would ask me what my upcoming travel plans were, and I’d already have flights booked out for weeks — or happily reply that I had no idea, and would just see what came up. But for the past few months, anyone who’s seen me knows that hasn’t been the […]

From Serial Expat to Full-Time Nomad: Life in 2015

Let’s skip all the pleasantries and excuses: yep, this recap is a little delayed. Happy 2016! Regardless of date, I love me a good annual recap. 2015, amiright?? What a year! This was the year I became a cliché, quit my corporate job, and left the serial expat life to travel full-time. More than that, my travel […]

On ‘Expat’ as Identity

(The office, Shanghai. 2009)  In the early weeks of 2008, I set out on a six-month trip to China. It seemed so insignificant at the time — I was still reeling from the death of my grandmother over Christmas, and was entangled in an emotionally abusive relationship that, at the age of 18, I couldn’t […]

Life in Paris & London: Summer 2015

It’s been over two months since I left Shanghai to go permanently on the road. In that time I’ve been to seven countries on three continents, saw very many friends and very few touristy things, probably gained a few pounds in wine and cheese, and went on far more camping trips than I was comfortable […]

I Love My Neighborhood: Urumqi, Xinjiang (China)

In this series, I ask expats to share the joys of local life they’ve found in their corner of the world. If you’re just joining in now, check out other cities that have been covered so far here. Today’s post comes from someone I’ve known for over six years — even though we’ve never met […]

Life in Shanghai: June 2015

My monthly wrap-ups are for me to share personal tidbits — the little things that make up my life abroad; stories and photos which may not otherwise see the light of blogging day. See previous months here. “What is this?” You may be asking yourself. “Why am I looking at a June recap? Aren’t we closer […]

Leaving Shanghai: The Double Decker

There’s a leaving season in Shanghai. It coincides with plum rain season; the whole month of June is awash with rain and leaving parties and many declarations of friend love and promises to return to the ‘Hai. This, coupled with the already event-heavy nightlife scene in Shanghai, meant I didn’t throw a leaving party my last […]

6 Airbnbs I loved from around the world

A quick note: this is not in any way affiliated with Airbnb. They have no idea who I am. I’m writing this post because I’ve stayed in some pretty cool places over the years and wanted to share the best of my experiences. (Unrelatedly, what is the state of travel blogging these days that I […]

Travel Makes the Heart Grow Fonder: 21 Lessons from 21 Countries

If there’s one thing every travel blogger loves to talk about on the internet, it’s that solo travel is marvelous and made of puppy tears and will cure your long-standing eczema. In principle, I support solo travel. It’s definitely something I think everyone should try at least once. But personally, it’s not for me. As […]

The 5 best things I ate in Chengdu

In this biweekly series, I round up the five best things I ate in a particular city or country. Click here to read previous 5BTIAs from Tokyo, Paris, and more. Sichuan food is notoriously spicy. I have seen five-year-olds from this province easily down bowls so bright red I can barely look at them without […]

Life on the Move: May 2015

My monthly wrap-ups are for me to share personal tidbits — the little things that make up my life abroad; stories and photos which may not otherwise see the light of blogging day. See previous months here.  Well it’s safe to say, this might have been one of my biggest months yet. Huge turning points all […]

Five years on: How I moved abroad after college and built a career through travel

This week marks the five-year anniversary of my college graduation. FIVE years! Well I. feel. old. When I graduated from the Class of 2010, I was 20 years old, had $700 to my name — and zero clue what to do next. This is the story of how in the five years since, I’ve lived in […]

The 5 best things I ate in Xi’an

In this biweekly series, I round up the five best things I ate in a particular city or country. Click here to read previous 5BTIAs from Paris, Australia, and more. I’ve come up with a new slogan for Xi’an after my recent trip out west: Xi’an: Come for the Warriors, Stay for the Pork Buns. […]