Final Destination: San Francisco

Well, it’s done. It’s over. My grand tour of Asia 2013 has finally come to an end. After traveling for so long, the thought of being able to acquire items and not wonder how to get rid of them in a few months time is an odd thought. Even more strange, that I sleep in just one bed, “my” bed. Stranger still, I have to get a job. Now that’s the tricky part.

A lot happened over the last three months, as I’m sure you’re aware. Don’t worry, I didn’t forget about you. I could never forget about you. Over the next few weeks, I’m going to play “catch-up” with you as I post some of my recent adventures. I’m happy to report that nothing devastating happend while I was wandering around these countries. So sit down, strap in, and no arms or legs outside the vehicle. It’s going to be a wild ride.


  • 50K in one day in the 2013 Yamathon
  • Tokyo from 440 meters up
  • Street food in Malaysia
  • A duck race on the beaches of Langkawi
  • Living it up in Singapore
  • Celebrating Buddah’s birthday
  • Hiking in for 7 days in the Himalayas
  • A new fear of leeches
  • Working with an orphanage in Pokhara
  • A Buddhist meditation and yoga retreat

A Year in the Life

Ha Long BayTomorrow marks one year since I embarked on this journey. Well, it would be if it was a leap year and February 29th existed. But rather than dwelling on the mysteries of the Gregorian calendar, let me take a moment to highlight some of my favorite parts of this journey.  Continue reading

Shooting Shashes

The milky way at the Tanabata festival near Nijojo Castle in Kyoto

The milky way at the Tanabata festival near Nijojo Castle in Kyoto

Let me preface this with an explanation for the title. The Japanese word for picture is shashin. As respectable English speakers living in Japan, we’ve developed slang for some of our favorite Japanglish. Naturally shashin becomes shash. Daijoubu (“it’s OK”) becomes daijoubs. And so on. It always amuses our fellow English-speaking Japanese friends.

I digress.

I like to do this thing where I take pictures on my adventures. And, by “take pictures” I mean that I bring this not-so-cheap piece of equipment and actually put some thought into it. As it is now, photography is mostly a hobby for me, but I’d like to think I’m OK at it. If you’re interested in seeing the rest of my stuff, check out the photography section in my portfolio! I swear, this isn’t a shameless ploy (well, not completely), I just finally got around to creating a place to view the pictures I’ve taken on my travels.

But yea, please stop by if you can!

Mixing it up

So in an effort to keep myself motivated, I’m changing the pace of this blog. You can still look forward to my verbose “insights on Japan.” But from here on out, the plan is to write more often, write shorter posts, and show more. You’re also going to get to know me a lot better.

Did you know:

  • I’m a fitness enthusiast. Not to be mistaken for someone who is actually fit. I just enjoy learning about fitness and trying new workouts.
  • I’m really into photography and art. You may have guessed this already, but I’m going to let it show more than ever.
  • I have an inner fat-kid. I’m a foodie who loves sweets. Be prepared to hear about amazing food/recipe discoveries.

So, it’s going to turn into more of a “daily-life” blog, with some longer posts about culture and the like sprinkled around.

This is also an attempt to motivate myself to look for inspiration and positives in my daily routine. Hopefully you enjoy some of my findings as well!


Ichigo-ichie (一期一会): Once in a Lifetime

Becky and I!

From friend and reader Mr. Nakatani, I first heard the Japanese saying ichigo-ichie. He explained the word in a comment on my Momma Hakuba post. At that time, it was the first I’d heard of it. Since then, it has appeared more and more in my life, both literally and figuratively. The closest translation I know of this is “a once in a lifetime meeting.”

In a bit of history, the word is often associated with chado, traditional tea ceremony. It’s believed that the time the host and the guests spend with each other during the ceremony is a once in a lifetime opportunity that time should be cherished. For hundreds of years, this idea has been at the core of Japanese traditions and practices. It’s no wonder the Japanese are among the most gracious of hosts.  Continue reading