I seem to always find myself in Paris every year and each time is as thrilling as the one before. I arrived in the city with California-like weather and friendlier-than-usual Parisians soaking up the sun and sitting by the Seine to cool off at night. I joined my tribe on a whisky hunt and discovered a cave to drink in. We met Clément, the young whisky expert, who worked in the cave and educated us on the complexities of vintage Laphroaig and Yamazaki. Here are the memories from my spring Parisian escape!
In Tuscany, I am reminded of a dream that a friend once said to me — he wanted to run wild in the vast open fields with his soulmate. I understood then, cerebrally, but I understand much better now in a primal way after running through yellow green Tuscan fields myself. The region of Siena opened me, released my bubbling rage, helped me make peace with the hurt constantly banging on my front door. I found self-love in Siena’s sunsets. I found romance and kindness within. I felt boundless love for my soul. Here are the highlights of the trip to our cousin’s wedding!
I ended my February voyage in Tokyo to unwind and explore amazing food. It’s a welcome change from the Mongolian mountains and Chinese port towns. Here are the highlights of my delicious escape to city life:
“As time starts to run out, what are the things that really matter?” –Kazuo Ishiguro
My brother and his long-time girlfriend are finally married! They held their first wedding in China where most of her relatives are, and will have a second wedding in our home in California next year. I’m a happy and proud big sister. Here are the highlights of my trip:
“All you need is love.” –The Beatles
I had the privilege of working on a project in Mongolia and fulfilled my dream of living in the mountains. It’s winter and negative 30. It took some time to adjust but once I traded the city for the countryside, I felt at peace in winter wonderland. Most of all, I felt at peace with myself. Here are the highlights, my loves:
“Be a lamp.” –Rumi
The entire year gave me ill health so before the year ends, I decided to de-stress and take myself out of a toxic situation. With the help of three amazing friends, we met up in Thailand to go through an ultimate detox experience together. We did quite a bit of meditation, yoga, pilates, and walks on the beach. We supported each other through this journey and made each other laugh whenever possible. I’m forever changed. Merry Christmas, my loves!
“The greatest teacher, failure is.” –Master Yoda, The Last Jedi
Finding unpretentious, cozy places in New York is hard, but I’ve been lucky to have experienced a few. One spot in Brooklyn is called the House of Small Wonder — a smallish greenhouse of a restaurant built around a living tree. Another place, in Manhattan, is called Hi Collar — a 30s inspired tiny bar serving up rice and eggs and siphon coffee. Stepping into these places is like time traveling in the past.
Summer is lovely in Montréal. My scrappy backpacking tribe and I nested in Le Plateau, a hipsterish arrondissement with tattoo parlors, jazz bars, bakeries, and cold brews. Everyone spoke French with a North American drawl that was laid back enough for me to understand well and respond in Franglais. I loved their quintessential Canadian summer look — the women so tanned and toned from running, and the men so robust and scruffy from hiking. I found my zen in Montréal. All nine hours of sleep every night…and of course the trifecta: maple syrup, bourbon, and poutine. 🙂
I’m excited to share the highlights of my latest adventure: Ciudad de México!
Stayed at The Red Tree House in Hipódromo neighborhood. Pretty popular among San Franciscans, New Yorkers, and digital nomads.
Climbed three pyramids in the ancient city of Teotihuacan: Sun, Moon, and Quetzalcoatl.