Welcome to Alice in Wandererland, my food and cultural immersion travel blog! This is my first attempt at capturing and recording all the amazing trips I’ve done over the past 10 years where I’ve visited over 50 countries.
Keeping a travel blog has been on my to-do list forever. But it was one of those things that never quite happened. I’ve always enjoyed writing. Growing up, I kept a journal, which let’s be honest, was usually about the latest boy crush I had or the most recent drama that was such a HUGE deal at the time. Oh teen angst, I do not miss you at all! However, I always consistently wrote about the annual summer vacation trips that my family took.
Once I became a “real” adult and started working, the journalling got put on the neverending to-do list and deprioritized as other things came up. I’m sure you have a few of those never completed to-do items too, right? Well I recently found myself unemployed with a lot of time on my hands. So I figured now is as good a time as ever to start writing for fun again.
Why or how did I become unemployed? It was my choice actually. After a team restructure, I was laid off and given the option to take severance and leave or find a new job within Google. I decided to leave a well-paid stable and safe job at Google for the unknown. I wanted to take a break from working since I was getting a little disillusioned with the corporate life. This way, I could recharge my batteries and figure out what I wanted to do next. In the meantime, I could also focus my time and energy on doing the things I actually enjoyed or have always wanted to do.
So I planned a badass 3.5 month fun-employment sabbatical. I spent 6 weeks learning Spanish in Costa Rica, one month traveling around Indonesia (basing myself out of Bali), and another month in Bali for yoga teacher training. Some of my friends laughed at my plans and asked if I was doing an “Eat, Pray, Love” journey. I beg to differ.
Less “Eat, Pray, Love” and more like “Eat, Pray, Slay!”
There is a major difference between that story line and mine. I’m not recovering from a massive relationship fallout unless you count my breakup with Google, which didn’t leave too much of a heartache. It was a mutual amicable parting of ways. I prefer to call this particular journey of personal growth and self discovery – “Eat, Pray, Slay!” There was plenty of eating and meditation through yoga. But I ultimately loved really taking the time to focus on myself and becoming an even more amazing person than I already am!
So why a travel blog? Well, I love traveling! Remember the annual family summer vacations I mentioned earlier? I have always loved them as a child. We would pack ourselves up in our SUV and do a road trip somewhere in the US or Canada. Sometimes we would visit my parents’ homeland of Taiwan. As an adult, due to the life paths I chose, I had the chance to work and live abroad in multiple countries. So I jumped at those opportunities, which have allowed me to travel to 51 countries and still counting!
I also really love to learn about anything and everything. Nerd alert! Accordingly when I travel, I really want to learn as much as I can about the place I’m visiting whether it’s the history, the people, the culture, the customs – anything really! I didn’t know there was a term for this type of travel but nowadays, it’s called cultural immersion travel or experiential travel. And when I think about it, it sounds about right. I really do enjoy immersing myself in the culture and the local experiences.
Therefore, this blog is my way of sharing these experiences that I’ve had over the past decade. I love traveling to off-the-beaten-path locations and really taking the time to learn about them while having fun at the same time. I hope that you too will learn something or be inspired to travel yourself!
Stay tuned as I post more in the future, especially over the next few weeks! Topics include: learning Spanish in Costa Rica, how I spent my 2 months in Bali and Indonesia, going to Trinidad for Carnival, food in Vietnam, and much much more!