Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Fun Facts about Me/Documentaries Coming at Ya

     I feel lucky that so many people are reading my Blog and liking my Facebook page:  Thank you so much!  I have realized now that new people are joining in every day and may not know very much about me, so... here we go!  Just remember... I love to make fun of myself!


Enjoying a cannoli for breakfast at an airport in Italy.

1) Graduated from Sacramento State University with a Social Science and History Degree.

2) I have one younger brother who is studying Creative Writing at the University of California, Santa Cruz with a Minor in Italian and will be going to Italy this summer.

3) I was born in Bangkok, Thailand, Half Thai, Half Caucasian American.  We moved to California when I was 5 because my dad wanted us to have the best education.

4) My friends tell me I am a fish because I love all things water.  I drink water like crazy (it's kind of embarrassing when the waiter needs to continue refilling), swim all the time, shower frequently and love the rain.

5) Football Fanatic!  Real football though, not American football!  I don't enjoy it, but I can respect the sport, but name it something else because when do you ever really kick during this sport?

6) I absolutely hate lettuce with a passion.  I can eat spinach and cabbage, but if you give me lettuce, I will puke.  My friends decided it would be a fun idea to throw bags and bags of lettuce all over my front yard in high school...

7) I LOVE ELVIS PRESLEY!  What a beautiful man with a unique sound.  Listening to him as I type!

8) I was a Girl Scout from age 5-17.  We sold so many cookies that we saved up the money to go on a free trip to Hawaii!

9) I love playing games!  A night in playing board games with friends beats any night at the bar, but I am super competitive, so watch out!

10) The number one most shameful thing about me is...  I have to sleep with a certain blanket every night.  Some could and would probably call it a blankie... but it just feels good OK! HAHA 

     As I said before, in my spare time I enjoy watching documentaries.  I love exposing myself to things I never heard of or knew before.  I like documentaries that enlighten me, that make me cry because I see so much good within the human spirit and that just make me happy plain and simple.  You can never stop learning... NEVER, so keep your hearts and minds open to all the new information that comes your way each and every single day.
The Boy They Call Fish

     This was a hard documentary to watch.  I went to Vietnam last year and learned about the deformities that may have been caused by Agent Orange.  Minh Anh's story is so endearing.  What a sweet boy.  It is amazing the connection he has with a granny from England that loves him.  It was hard to see all the children that have been abandoned due to being disabled.  Breaks my heart, but I am glad to be aware of and am inspired by all the beautiful loving people in this film.

No Sex Please, We're Japanese

     Firstly, I always love a BBC Documentary.  Secondly, this is such an interesting topic!  I had no idea about the declining population occurring in Japan.  If they continue as is right now, they will lose 1/3 of their population.  This poses many problems for their economy.  Can you believe how great those older cheerleaders look?


     Voodoo is one of those topics I have always been interested about but have known nothing about.  I stumbled upon this and it was very interesting.  Most of it is creepy a bit creepy, but understanding why they do what they do made me have some form of respect for it.  It is very odd... but at least I am aware of it now.

"Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The 
important thing is not to stop questioning". -Albert Einstein

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

My Favorite Travel Sites

This post is all about my favorite travel sites.  Feel free to Facebook me or comment here with any questions!

Favorite site to book a flight:

I love Expedia because it is so easy.  I have tried using a lot of different sites to book flights, but this one is very aesthetically pleasing and simple.

Cheap flights in Europe: 


Always check RyanAir and easyJet when booking flights from one European country to the next.  It is the cheapest and will not show up on sites like Expedia.  I used these companies all over Europe.  Be careful about luggage and make sure to purchase in advance if you are checking anything in.

Cheap flights in Australia/New Zealand/Asia:

Use this site if you are traveling in Australia and New Zealand specifically.  It is going to give you the cheapest flights.  Looks like they travel to Asia as well but from Australia and New Zealand.  Also, be careful about luggage and make sure to purchase in advance if you are checking anything in.  I definitely had an issue with them and they charged me an arm and a leg!

Favorite site to book a hotel/hostel:

It is easy and I love it!  Gets you the best deals all over the world.

Best way to make friends and have a free place to stay:

I used this website all throughout Europe.  I made amazing new friends that gave me a place to stay. Some of the best memories I have traveling are with the "Couchsurfers" that I met up with.  I recommend it a lot!

Check out my Facebook page for more on traveling!

"Never go on trips with anyone you do not love". 
-Ernest Hemingway

Monday, January 20, 2014

January Update

     I hope everyone is having a wonderful New Year!  I did not really make a resolution...  I just promised myself to do whatever makes me happy, but that is a vow that I hope to carry over every year.  It is already past the middle of the month!  How is this possible?  Last year flew by and this year is flying by already.  I'll be 25 before I know it...  Insane!

     What have I been up to?  The beginning of the month caused quite a bit of stress in my life, but I have since worked through it.  When I was younger, I always wanted to join the Peace Corp, but it was something that I had ruled out of my life.  The reasoning behind this was because I thought that a lot of it was agriculturally based and I don't feel that I am equipped for a farming lifestyle.  I have since ran into an old friend that has a girlfriend in the Peace Corp and it made me want to have a look at it again.  Upon researching, I found out that they were looking for English teachers.  I have certification to teach English as a foreign language and my wheels started turning again.  I am madly in love with Europe and would like to spend my LIFE there, so I decided that the opening to Macedonia suited me best if I chose to join.  Unfortunately, the deadline for this application was the end of this month!  I was hardly sleeping trying to sort out if this is what I was mean't to do in my life.  I came to the conclusion that 2 1/4 years commitment was way too much when I tend to be a pretty spontaneous person.  I couldn't do it and I had to put it aside.  I do believe it is a great organization though, so give it a look if you have any desire.

     What do I want to do with the rest of my life?  I have no clue and am finally at peace with that.  I still have my moments of stress where I feel like I should have a plan, but ultimately I feel okay just cruising right now.  I don't think I need to have all the answers at 24 years old.  It is hard being in America because you feel pressure to live up to the American dream, climb up the corporate ladder and make tons of money.  I cannot and will not work a 9-5 job, but when I am here I feel that pressure from family and society.

    Next trip?  As you can imagine, traveling around the world for 10 months and then being stagnate in my home town for 2 months has caused me to become pretty antsy.  After very little thought, 1 week to be exact, I decided after looking at flights and seeing that I could get a killer deal, WHY NOT?!?!  I was missing friends abroad, spoke with them, found out they were free and that was that.  I booked and here I am today excited about a trip to Portugal, England and Scotland that is 2 1/2 weeks long.  I can't wait and I am leaving in a little over 2 weeks!  I am young and I have jobs that are wiling to work with me and my schedule, so I  had to go for it before something might constrain me in the future.

     Today, my best friend and I did the "March for the Dream" walk in downtown Sacramento in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with her mother and a friend.  It was truly remarkable seeing thousands of people, marching bands and a drill team marching through the streets for this great Civil Rights leader.  I was so moved!  It was really great day supporting the best cause out there, human rights!

 California State Capitol

     If you haven't listened to the entire "I Have a Dream" speech, I really encourage you to do so, American or not.  It is brilliant and the message can carry on to any human rights issue that has occurred all over the world.  He has a powerful voice and his memory will live on forever.  Let's work on curing this planet together.  Look into a cause or volunteering opportunity in your community that you can be a part of!

"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that." 
-Martin Luther King Jr.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Happy New Year! 2014

     Firstly, I just want to thank you all for your support this past year as I took this trip around the world and started this Blog.  My friends, family and all of you...  Over 7,400 page views!  Thank you for your interest in my life and journey.  I appreciate it a lot!  I decided to start up a Facebook page for this Blog, so I would love to have you carry on your support over there as well!  I will always post when I have a new Blog up along with a lot of other fun stuff that has to do with travel and life in general.

     I can't believe it is already January 3rd!  In 10 days it will be the one year anniversary of when I left on my trip.  I can't really believe it...  The time just flies by and this past year has felt like a dream to me.  I know I did it, but sometimes I wonder...

     On the last day of 2013, I went on a solo walk by the American River just to reflect on this year.  What a year... part of me is so sad to see it end.  The freedom I had this year will always stay with me.  In a world filled with careers, finances, stress, obligations etc., I didn't need to worry about a thing and just enjoyed my time on this beautiful planet.  A blessing from above.  2013 will forever be the year that changed me, opening my eyes to all the possibilities ahead.  I have this fire within me to live the rest of my days in total happiness, never succumbing to anything that takes that away.  I feel loved and I feel full of hope that there are many more brilliant years ahead.  2014, here I come...

     I wanted to say that while the nature, architecture, food, history and culture are all key and amazing components of travel, there is nothing like the people you spend your time with along the way.  The people are what make the journey meaningful.  So many people have touched my heart forever.  These photographs are of them in our moments together.  This slideshow is dedicated to all the beautiful people that have been in my life, acquaintances, old friends, new friends and family that have made this year one I'll never forget!

     My best friend Delali and I decided that we would be old ladies this year and just stayed in.  We had some apple cider and watched the New York Ball drop.  We love the show Friends, so we watched episodes that had to do with New Years.  Not the most exciting New Years but we enjoyed it!  Hope you all had a great beginning to your year!

“Beneath the makeup and behind the smile I am just a girl who wishes for the world.” -Marilyn Monroe