My Tumblr feed used to be filled with marvelous photos of distant lands, cultural beauty, and contemplations about life and living your dream.
What is it filled with now? Tattoos, Topless Tuesday, and Memes.
There are a select few that still pop up here and there that fill me with spirituality and wonder. But only a select few.
I love tattoos, I have plenty. I love tits, because the female body is ravishing.
But what I love more is seeing people explore the depth of the world and the depths of their souls.
I follow the same people, but what the hell happened? This is why I haven’t been on Tumblr in months. It’s all regurgitated GIFs and nonsense.
Can anyone recommend some people to follow so I can get some amazing worlds imagery and inspiration on my feed again?? Because if so, I want to follow them. If it is you, I want to follow you.
Trying Vegemite seemed like a relatively insignificant feat compared to some of the other EPIC tasks to knock off my Bucket List. I saw it eaten on the Travel Channel once or twice before my trip, and though I saw their distaste of the beloved Aussie spread – I figured it would be easy. No Biggie.
I was horribly wrong…
Read about the FULL grueling experience on my blog HERE!
Have you ever tried Vegemite?
This may come as a surprise to some people, but if you know me, probably not. I have NO CLUE how to cook!
When I say no clue, that is a small exaggeration. Sure, I make sandwiches, salads, pastas, and I can BBQ. I make a mean insta-noodles and Easy Mac as well.
Oh, and I can whip up some of the VERY best burritos you have ever (and will ever) have. Trust me, they are legit gnarly. So awesome that friends and I used to only eat them while watching 300 and grunting.
Trust me, they’ll give you a Spartan taste-bud kicking.
But ask me to cook anything out of my comfort zone, I may run away, pretend I am too tired to cook, make up an excuse, or suggest carry-out.
Especially when it comes to any kind of ethnic foods…
It’s a shame really, because I absolutely LOVE food, eating food, and everything about food. As a boy growing up though, my father never took the time to teach me how to cook. Instead of learning on my own, I usually ordered pizza or stuck to frozen dinners.
Hell, my Thanksgiving while I was living in Las Vegas was a Hungry Man turkey dinner. So sad. Tisk-tisk.
I was taught how to grill steaks, burgers, chicken, and various other types of manly “American” cuisines. That’s the extent of my “skills”.
Okay, don’t laugh.
I actually had no clue how to cook rice until recent. Yes, I know, you are probably laughing. Some of you may be thinking that there is no way someone has never cooked rice before…
Wanna’ bet? I’ve had rice in the past out of microwavable packs and such, but I actually can’t remember my Pops every cooking rice from scratch. And if I ever had rice, it was bought from a Chinese restaurant. Pretty pathetic. Except I never worried about it. I was fine with my spaghetti, burritos, salads, and sandwiches.
The last time I had a homemade rice dish was a few year back while living in California. Some friends and I wanted to make Jambalaya. Guess who was on the grill — Me, cooking up steak, chicken, and sausages. The rice was left to another friend, who funny enough cooked so much rice it burst out of the pot.
See, I’m not the only completely cooking-illiterate.
There are winds of change coming though, and they are bringing tantalizing aromas with them!
Want to know the best thing about being “exiled” in a itty-bitty town in New Zealand where all the poor backpackers have come to pick kiwi fruit? It is a giant cultural smorgasbord!
It’s like a 24/7 dose of food-porn! Everyone is always cooking.
Our dinky hostel is bursting at the seams with people from all over the world. What do people with little money and plenty of time end up doing? Cooking HEAPS of food!
There are Chinese, Japanese, Koreans (South), Malaysians, Danish, English, Canadian, Slovenian, and of course Germans. Oh, and me, the only American. I really have nothing to contribute except for a dash of charm!
Ladies, you are looking at the next top bachelor and backpacker iron chef in the making! Well, some slight wishful thinking, but I’ll get there.
Check out my full adventure learning to cook HERE!
Continuing where Part 1 of this epic FAIL tale left off, I found myself stranded in a tiny New Zealand town that was horseshoed by mountains, an ominous storm was swirling in. I had no way of getting out tonight it seemed. Rental cars weren’t an option, there were no trains running, and there is only one or two buses that pass through daily. That left me with one option — hitchhiking.
Now, don’t be frightened. This is a long article, and I put a LOT of work into it. I know there is a tendency to not post long articles in the blogsphere, but I would love if you broke the rule of reading shorter travel tales, grabbed a coffee, and followed my chucks through this crazy adventure detail by detail. These little details are what made this grey, depressing attempt into a comical affair.
I tend to conjure up these astonishingly imaginative scenarios in my head when it comes to anything about travel and the unknown. Well, just as I had gnawed off my nails nervously while I slept in my hammock in the woods above Wellington worrying about an axe murderer in the dark, I was freaking myself out about getting into a car with a serial killer. Or even worse, about hoping into a semi with a truck driver expected a blowie.
This is the beginning of a 4 part tale, nearly a short story, retelling a terribly botched (bordering foolish) attempt to make it to Christchurch from Wellington within one day with no forward planning at all.
Why the last-minute blitz to the South Island? Well, you see, a lady friend of mine was due to arrive at the Christchurch airport the next day at 10:30 am to travel with me for a month. It was rumored (or she had told me) that she was going to be slightly hormonal. Shake that up, Dr. Jekyll, in a cylinder with a 13 hour flight and a friend not being there on arrival; you know what happens.
I scrambled to the front desk of Nomads Capital with desperation masking my cheery chiseled good looks, the last words from Brynn striking fear into fear into my heart.
“Wait, you aren’t on the South Island yet? You haven’t even left Wellington? You BETTER get on that ferry NOW!”
Yes, I hadn’t left yet. With my possessions and my job, I also ditched any desire to plan ahead for a slightly more aloof lifestyle. But now there was another person, and she was pissed. I ignorantly thought Christchurch was just a hop-skip over the pond and I would have no problem arriving the same day.
I was seriously mistaken.
Feeling the fire and brimstone coming, I bought my tickets, hauled my pack on, and with just 20 minutes to reach the ferry I attempted to make a mad dash to the Interislander. After a few blocks I was heaving for air and slowed to a crawl, wishing I had one of those motorized chairs they give to really fat Americans to cruise the rest of the way in.
Luckily I found a bus to the terminal, or this story would have been much worse. I arrived just as they were boarding, and settled in feeling slightly more at ease.
It has now been three months since I left the 9-5 routine behind. I ditched all of those material things I owned, and took to the path less taken with my trusty chucks. I flew across the world to an island most Americans would go, “NZ?” and began my life of less possessions and more possibilities.
After a string of freedom injecting experiences and wild good luck, I now find myself in a rut. This is my first time traveling abroad, and my first time without much contact with friends and family at home. I think I was struck by a 1… 2 knockout punch by culture shock and writers block.
Culture Shock: The feeling of disorientation by someone who is suddenly subjected to an unfamiliar culture, way of life, or set attitudes.
Travel is filled with blissful moments of self discovery, spectacular works of man and nature to behold, awesome adventures, dance of extreme emotions, budding friendships, and exposure to amazing cultures around the world. Travel is also filed with epic fails as well. Admit it, we all do quite stupid things sometimes — FAIL Tales is where I leave my humility behind, and share mine.
“I’ve done a fair share of stupid things in my life, a couple of which should have put me in the grave. But here I am, typing away as if I had a brain.” - Craig Wilson
Here I am swaying back and forth on the Interislander headed to Picton, my embarrassment still lingers from a really stupid thing I just did, the sticky residue on my face as a reminder.
Oh, that came out way wrong, let’s re-word that…
The sticky remnants of ketchup (tomato sauce, whatever!) is still on my face after an epic fail while trying to enjoy a meal of fish n’ chips on the boat.
After catching up with some writing on Cuba Street, ironically at a place called “Mr. Buns” a friend and I decided to head back to the hostel to whip up some dinner. God, these are all terrible words to use, and you will see why. As we were coming up to the street our hostel was located on, I happen to look down and have my retinas thoroughly seared by this scene above.
I was admiring the sky and the sunset, but these pleasant sights were interrupted by a full moon. As if it wasn’t bad enough I happened to spot this fully grown man sitting at a bar in a Tony the Tiger baby jumper, he happened to be adjusting the small fitting garment, revealing thong, cheeks and all.
I think his friend next to him is thinking, “Bro, that chick totally digs your tiger onesie!” Haha.
Create a caption! What do you think his friend is going to say to him?
Wow, Wellington has a gorgeous coastline. Something I didn’t even think about when I first visited. I feel a lot of people miss out on the beautiful beaches and awesome views around the coast! Here is an article of my quick ride around Welly’s Coastline, take a look!
Where are your favorite coastal drives?
Right now I am sitting at a tiny white wooden desk in a tiny white wooden chair, typing away on my Macbook Pro. The wallpaper in front of me is eggshell white, with a generic yellow floral pattern. Actually, there are floral patterns all around me, from the sheets, to the drapes, to the bed spread. Pasted all over the walls are old newspaper and magazine clippings, classical music plays in softly in the next room.
A southerly wind howls outside, spitting rain whips against the single pane windows. The drapes float up and down in the corner of my eye from wind sneaking in, yet every time I look, they are calm again. Chills creep down my spine. In the other room, the wood fire crackles, the WWOOFing host sits in her floral pattern sofa chair, rocking back and forth, knitting silently.
This is the end to my first day of WWOOFing. Kinda’ sounds like a Stephen King novel huh? Ya’ know, the one about the writer in the cabin? Maybe I just have a wild imagination. But the beginning of this day started with exactly that, my imagination racing, an anxious feeling, and uncertainty.
Click the picture to read the full post about my horror movie-esque experience!