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Category: Locations

Boots on the Ground Part II: Libraries and Landladies

Boots on the Ground Part II: Libraries and Landladies

(also banks, but that wasn’t alliterative) I. Libraries Getting a library card in Taipei is way easier than I’d anticipated. To get one in the US you need to provide proof of residency such as rental paperwork or recent mail. In Taipei, you don’t even need to be a resident get a library card. The minimum requirements are permanent and temporary addresses, your passport, and a phone number where they can contact you. It’s not a problem if you don’t…

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Huayu Enrichment Scholarship: Boots on the Ground

Huayu Enrichment Scholarship: Boots on the Ground

So I live in Taipei now. I know, I know, it’s wild. It’s weird to me that I just…decided to move to Taiwan. And then did it. Anyway. I arrived last Saturday, late at night. I’d asked my school (Chinese Culture University’s Mandarin Learning Center) to arrange a driver to meet me, since I had too much luggage to manage on public transit. (I really should invest in some rolling suitcases.) The car took me to EasyMind Guest House, where I’d…

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Two Weeks of Tall Ship Training: My Experience on Lady Washington

Two Weeks of Tall Ship Training: My Experience on Lady Washington

In March of 2017, I called up my mom to pitch an idea. “So, uh. You know those tall ships? Like in pirate movies or Master and Commander? Turns out you can go train on them. In California. And I really, really want to do that.” To which my mother, who tries her hardest to understand my whims, said, “why?” There were a lot of reasons for “why” — on one level, this seemed like a good way to make possible career in-roads…

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How to Get Vegetarian Eats in Spain

How to Get Vegetarian Eats in Spain

If you’re used to eating vegetarian food in America, get ready for a challenge in Spain. Vegetarianism is still a weird concept to a lot of Spaniards, so explaining your preferences can lead to confusion. Not only do Spaniards eat a lot of carne, they often don’t consider finely shredded meat or flesh-based products (like broth) to actually be meat. (If you shred up the jamón really small, it doesn’t count, right?) Finding vegetarian food can be an adventure or a chore, depending on…

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Odd Things About Spain

Odd Things About Spain

One of the perennially interesting perks of traveling is learning what little American quirks I’ve been taking for granted. Traveling pushes us outside of little comfort zones we didn’t even know we had and leaves us pondering doorknobs, water fountains, and all sorts of other topics we don’t usually give a second thought to. So! To kick off a series of posts about my recent travels in southern Spain, here are eight quirks I ran into over spring break. Dinner is super late at…

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I’m back! An update.

I’m back! An update.

Hey there, blog. It’s been a while. I’ve neglected you because, unfortunately, trying to finish my undergraduate degree was rather trying. Good news, though! That’s over with. I’m now free — free to write, free to travel, free to do whatever I darn well please, as long as money allows. Although I was busy with school, I made time to travel. I spent eight days in Spain this semester, and five camping in New Mexico’s high desert. I’ve got plenty of posts on Chaco…

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The Very Large Array

The Very Large Array

The Very Large Array has, at the same time, an incredibly descriptive and totally unhelpful name. The array in question is a Y-shaped network of radio telescopes that sit in the New Mexican high desert. They’re turned to the sky, listening to the sounds of worlds light years away from earth. Unless you’re New Mexican or move in space science circles, the Very Large Array (frequently called the VLA) is likely foreign to you except for the vague feeling that you’ve seen it…

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Visiting the Trinity Test Site in New Mexico

Visiting the Trinity Test Site in New Mexico

The Trinity Test Site at the White Sands Missile Range marks the site of the very first atomic bomb test. Ever since I moved to New Mexico for college, I’ve wanted to visit the Trinity Test Site. After my visit to Hiroshima, I felt like I needed to go, as a pilgrimage of sorts. This was easier said than done since it’s only open to the public for fifteen hours a year, for seven and a half hours a day on the first Saturdays in…

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Back on the Mother Road (Sort of): New Mexico to New Hampshire

Back on the Mother Road (Sort of): New Mexico to New Hampshire

May of this year, my brother flew down to New Mexico to tour my alma mater and help me drive my car back to New England. As it turns out, he’s not much for navigation or freeway driving, but what skills he lacks in those areas he makes up for by being a great adventure buddy. Most of our trip was relatively boring because it’s hard to do lots of interesting things when you’ve got to drive for eight hours…

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Gatos y Galletas: New Mexico’s First Cat Cafe

Gatos y Galletas: New Mexico’s First Cat Cafe

UPDATE, December 2016: Gatos y Galletas is now closed. But, if everything goes smoothly, a dog cafe will soon be opening in Albuquerque. If and when that happens, I’ll make sure to post about it. Cute cats and hot drinks are a natural combination, so it may be surprising that the first cafe to officially combine the two opened in Taipei, Taiwan, only 19 years ago. The concept hopped over to Japan, where stressed workers who lived in pet-less apartments made the…

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