suitcases stacked

Unpacking Suitcases, Uncovering Memories

I don’t know what to do with the love letters. I’d forgotten about them until I stumbled upon their crumpled pages in the untouched recesses of my backpack; I suppose ...

Machu picchu

15 Things You Should Know Before Visiting Machu Picchu

Planning a trip to Machu Picchu can be stressful (I know; I’ve done it twice!), so I’ve put together a list of 15 things I wish I’d known before visiting ...

How I Packed for 3 Months in South America in 1 Carry-On Bag

Not sure what to bring on a trip to South America? I’ve got you covered. While I ended up staying in South America for five months, I packed with three ...


Me at Machu Picchu

How I Afford to Travel (Yes, I Reveal Exact Dollar Amounts)

How do I afford to travel the world? In this post I ...
How to Start a Blog

How to Start a Blog (in 10 Steps)

People often ask me how to start a blog. This post has ...

I Quit My Dream Job

Yesterday was my last day at work. For most (some of my closest ...

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Rainbow over Cusco

Life Continues as Normal: On Leaving Peru and Coming Home

As a general rule of life, no matter how certain you were about a decision when you made it, you will second guess it just as the door is being closed on your other options. As you swipe your credit card at the store, you’ll wonder if you should’ve gotten that other dress instead, or [...]

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Tom Bihn Aeronaut in the woods

Tom Bihn Aeronaut Review: My Carry-On Bag for One Bag Travel

Back in April I wrote about my search for the best carry-on bag for a long-term trip to South America. It was my attempt at one bag travel, a movement towards minimalism during travel. After researching and testing different bags (including the Eagle Creek Adventure Weekender, a review of which I’ll post next), the one [...]

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writing notebook

Updates on My Upcoming Cusco E-Book + A Giveaway!

You deserve the best. Has anyone ever told you that? Well, it’s true. And because you deserve the best, I’ve decided to delay the publication of my e-book. It will be self-published roughly around mid-October. I thought I had to rush to finish this book just so I could have it published before I left [...]

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Peruvian Hairless Dog Puppy Peru

The Peruvian Hairless Dog

My landlady got a new dog. Normally, this is not cause for gawking, let alone a blog post, but this isn’t just any dog. This is…a Peruvian Hairless dog. What? Yes, the Peruvian Hairless dog, also known as the Peruvian Inca Orchid or the “Perro sin pelo de Peru.” The name is self-explanatory. Here in Peru, they are [...]

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Cronuts in a display case in Cusco

New York’s ‘Cronut’ Has Come to Cusco, Peru (And It’s DELICIOUS)

Yesterday, I ate a cronut. For those of you who don’t know, the “cronut” – a cross between a croissant and a donut – took the world by storm in 2013 when chef Dominique Ansel invented it and started selling it at the Dominique Ansel Bakery in New York City. I kid you not, people [...]

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His Name Means Hope

I call him Esperanzo. I first saw him in June, ripping through a garbage bag on the side of a road in central Cusco, his ribs and hip bones jutting out grotesquely from his soiled white fur. When he discovered the bag held only dirt, he dug through it anyway; after finding nothing, he walked [...]

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Llama at the Ccochahuasi Animal Sanctuary, Sacred Valley, Peru

Ccochahuasi Animal Sanctuary, Sacred Valley, Peru

The Ccochahuasi Animal Sanctuary is a privately-owned, family-run organization in the Sacred Valley of Peru that rescues exotic animals that have been injured or have been used for cruel entertainment purposes. When my friend Kim asked me to come on a field trip with her Advanced English class to help them practice English, I immediately jumped [...]

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“Traveling is a fool's paradise…At home I dream that at Naples, at Rome, I can be intoxicated with beauty, and lose my sadness. I pack my trunk, embrace my friends, embark on the sea, and at last wake up in Naples, and there beside me is the stern fact, the sad self, unrelenting, identical, that I fled from. I seek the Vatican, and the palaces. I affect to be intoxicated with sights and suggestions, but I am not intoxicated. My giant goes with me wherever I go.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Self-Reliance”

On Grieving While Traveling, and Traveling to Heal

Grief. Who among us can escape its snare? Back in May, I met an American woman in her 60s who had come to South America after falling into a deep desolation when her husband passed away. “I was a mess,” she said, shaking her head. “Then, one day, my best friend said, ‘Let’s go to [...]

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Hand and typewriter

I’m Writing and Publishing a Book in 3 Weeks. I’m Also Crazy.

So I’m writing a book. If you know me at all, this isn’t news to you.  I’ve been “writing a book” for three years now. In fact, my friends are like… I’m posting this promise on the Internet now so you can hold me accountable. In 2011, my first attempt at writing a book was [...]

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PeruRail versus Inca Rail

Taking the Train to Machu Picchu: PeruRail or Inca Rail?

There are three ways to get to the famous 15th century Inca site of Machu Picchu: Hiking Train Bus or Car ( A lesser known option and, depending on whom you ask, maybe dangerous). If you decide to take a train to Machu Picchu, there are two options for train companies: PeruRail Inca Rail Both [...]

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