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The latest posts, regardless of story or project

Instant love for Istanbul

22 – 23 aug 2016 ~ Before coming to Istanbul, I thought it would be a pretty city with some beautiful buildings, at a similar level to Budapest. Very shortly after arriving, it turns out I was wrong. Istanbul really is one of the great cities of this world, on a similar level to London, Paris or Rome. If I made one mistake in planning my trip, it was only giving myself one day in Istanbul.

Bucharest Blues

16 – 22 aug 2016 ~ Romania is really starting to feel like eastern Europe rather than central Europe. The people were very kind, and really enjoyed eating and drinking together, and often appeared to me as supreme bohemiens.

Buda and Pest

14 & 15 aug 2016 ~ Despite the Soviets having done their best to concrete-ify it, and the dilapidation that not having quite enough money brings with it, Budapest still clearly shows that it was once the co-capital of one of Europe’s great empires.

The beginning at the end of the world

3 & 4 April 2014 ~ The orange, pink and yellow mud plaster in Oualata is often decorated with white geometric medallion patterns on the outside; the interior walls are often decorated in curly patterns. I’m not sure whether these patterns are of Berber, Arab, or Soninke heritage, but it gives the town an appearance unlike anything I’ve seen elsewhere in the Sahara or Sahel. Add in some cow herders walking their animals through town, lots of kids saying “bonjour monsieur!”, and smiling adults, and Oualata feels like a breath of fresh air after the tense atmosphere in Nema.


14 aug 2016 ~ living the good life, Bavarian style

Celebrating change

12 – 14 aug 2016 ~ Having traveled south already, and there not being so much land to the west and north, I decided to go east. Looking for unusual and interesting destinations, I ended up looking at Georgia; a
smallish country on the Southern Caucasus, just about in Asia.

I took the sleeper train to Munich. The following morning, I woke up just before we arrived in Munich. Like many German cities, the area around the main train station is a bit dilapidated and poor, with mostly immigrants living there. Getting further towards the old town, Munich starts to match your expectation of Bavaria’s capital city…

Fine, just fine

4 – 6 dec 2019 ~ The few tourists who do venture to Dakhla the city will find it to be fine. Apart from it being at the center of the broader political issues surrounding the Western Sahara, there is really nothing bad to say about Dakhla. And yet… for a frontier town in one of the most remote places in the world, in an area disputed between a nomadic people and a country known for its spectacular ancient cities, in a place where North Africa is slowly starting to melt with West Africa, where there is so much construction and development going on that the air is practically buzzing… Dakhla is really quite tame and, dare I say it, almost boring..

Going nowhere, with saudades

3 – 4 dec 2019 ~ My first solo movement of the trip takes me, appropriately and perhaps unfortunately, on a very, very long bus ride into one of the most desolate territories in the world.

Western Sahara 2019

Western Sahara 2019​Bleak and empty, bustling and on the move… almost as contradictory as my moodWestern Sahara 2019Bleak and empty, bustling and on the move…

The monumental dumbass (and two lessons in economics)

27 nov – 2 dec 2019 ~ I’m not sure I’ve ever felt as dumb as when I bring Ananda to Marrakesh Airport. My thoughts are not at all with the awesome adventures that lie ahead. Why would any sane person leave for three months in search of “adventure” in some of the least developed places in the world, when I get to share my daily life with the most wonderful person, who brightens and expands my world on a daily basis?

The Art of Moroccan Salesmanship

29 nov – 2 dec 2019 ~ This time in Marrakesh, I am not alone, still poor, but with a wife that loves a bit of shopping. That also brings me into much closer contact with the curious art of Moroccan salesmanship. It can be equally infuriating, fascinating, and funny.

Four days with La Bahia

29 nov – 2 dec 2019 ~ So… here we go again… A solo backpacking trip in West Africa. Sounds familiar? It’s a continuation of my trip in 2014, but now I have an awesome job to go back to (so no unlimited travel time; 3 months max), and a most wonderful wife, which makes even a three week solo trip seem awfully long. Thankfully she’ll be accompanying me for my first four days in Marrakesh.

Morocco 2019

Getting back up to speed, enjoying a few days with my wife, and realizing something about myself

West Africa 2019

Here we go again… A continuation of my trip in 2014, but with a bit more experience and a vastly different home situation… It’s still just as  overwhelming.