Traveling

Escaping From the New York Winter to the Beaches and Sunny Skies of Northern Europe

Okay, I’m excited. In between the hustle and bustle of getting one of my trips under way (Saying farewells to friends and family, collecting the spare change in my room into a plastic sandwich baggy, attempting to sell said loose change sandwich baggy at karaoke bars [Nope] and regular bars [still nope] before one of my friends graciously steps in to purchase it from me…) I never seem to realize what is actually about to happen until I’ve found my way onto my plane and settled in for all of the complementary Johnny Walkers the flight attendants feel comfortable giving me.

So, we’re a couple hours early this year. (Grateful for arriving waaaaaay too early for my flight and finally getting time to post!)

I gave up my room on Dec 1st, and since then I’ve been a nomad in my own city, from couch to couch to bed and back, the trip begins this year with a week of bouncing between my amazing friends and family. THANK YOU ALL. I seriously have the best friends and family ever. You  people are too damn cool.

Drooling over friends finished, if you have been refreshing this page continously the past two years as you await my return to rambling confessionals, I apologize for the delay. If you have taken a vow to never read another word by any writer whatsover until I return from my self-imposed alphabet exile, then holy crap, I am extremely disturbed and supremely impressed. Please, for the love of whatever God you subscribe to, take me down from that pedestal, I am afraid of falling and spraining one of my preferred body parts.

(All of them.)

Jokes aside, welcome back. Or welcome for the first time. Or for the last time if this is it and every following word further shores up your decision to delete me as a Fbook friend and excise myself from the ranks of your memory. Or possibly for the last time because perhaps I’ll blow off writing anything for the entire time I am abroad and will be forced to have this tangent-soaked re-introduction stuck at the top of my stale site in perpetuity.

We shall see.

In any case, I at least plan to start out a couple travel projects and see how they go. The first will be a series of selfies with the constant stream of friends I make while traveling. I want to be able to look back and see those golden moments when a momentary connection turns a stranger into a friend. Into someone you would invite into your home, to share ideas, break bread, break down social norms and expectations.

Travelers are well accustomed to the transient life. Always on the move, always on the hunt for the next thrill, the next city seems even brighter than the one in which you stand… but no one likes to leave a friend behind.

Moments flash past on the cycle of life, and we are passing spectators. I’d like the opportunity to remind myself of each beautiful person who crosses my path. Days to weeks, months to years to decades and still a flash remains, permanently etched into the minds of its participants. Or it would be if not for our pesky minds choosing to fill up on childhood television theme songs and Internet memes.

(Work, mind, damn it!)

So, when the brain refuses to work as we would like, a snapshot of a connection is the best time-travel at our disposal. I’ll gather these snapshots and post them to my new project specific Instagram, FriendsBeyondBorders.

Love you all and see ya in a jiffy –

Amsterdam in 12 hours!

Hazy College Days, a Big Tattoo, and a Failed Love – Five Years of Watching Princess Mononoke

princess-mononoke-50f07ddf9c0de

Unless you’ve seen me naked sometime in the past three years, you probably don’t know about the giant homage to Princess Mononoke that adorns my stomach. I’m a relatively inconspicuous young man, my most notable other features being a thick, scraggly beard and a pair of extremely plump red lips, so most seem to be a little surprised when I take off my shirt and they are faced with a piece of art that takes up approximately 50% of my torso.

Read more at MXDWN.COM

Ch-Ch-Changes

Changes in the site, changes in the life.

If you’re new here: Welcome. If you’ve been here before: Welcome back.

So, I’m developing the details of my next travel excursion. Let’s just throw away that whole thing about “settling down” and moving into New York with things like leases and apartments and gym memberships that go unused and cheap sofas that have metal bars in all the most uncomfortable of places and making plans with people and being forced to come up with a whole variety of new excuses as to why you can’t come to this bar or that house party or that National Bowling League match (“Uhh… man I would, but I have a rule that Tuesdays are my ‘Wallow Alone in Drunken Misery’ nights. Yeah… yeah, you wouldn’t want to see that. I’ll catch up with you next time.”). Sure, that was the plan (and I guess that still will be the plan if I get offered some sort of amazing job), but times have changed.

Chaaaaanges.

Specifically, I just visited my French Canadian friend in Montreal, and – God Damn – but I seem to have gone and stuck myself with the needle of that most addictive and life-altering of drugs: Adventure. The thirst for newness and the quest for an escape from the stale and the fixed and the placid and the mortuary-like day-to-day existence of most of America, most of the Earth.

Shit shit shit shit shit shit shit shit.

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Julie the Fortune Teller

I had a few interactions with death during my time abroad. One Cambodian friend was drunk and drove his dirtbike into a wall. An expat I knew in Cambodia succumbed one day to his many ailments. Everyday he had come to the bar at 6am, sat in the exact same spot, took out his book for the day, and then drank and smoked until nightfall. Every single day. I’m told he had been holding this schedule for the past five years. The day came when he wasn’t there for the opening shift of the bar. We knew what had happened, and we left his spot at the bar open for him.

And then there was Julie.

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‘Hunters’ of Asia

I turned on Facebook earlier this evening and – wait, wait, wait – turned on? That’s an odd way to talk, Dom. You sound like you’re a grandmother.

Alright, logged on then. Is that better?

Ehhh.. just say, “I went on Facebook. That’s all you need.”

… So… So, I went on Facebook earlier this evening… I mean, I go on Facebook everyday, multiple times per day. It’s not like today was a special day for Facebooking or anything. No, it was a regular day. Facebook is boring now. Have you noticed that? Maybe I’ve just exhausted my patience for other peoples bullshit. If I want to read about a bunch of bullshit I can just log onto my own site (har, har, har).

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Tales of the Spanish Girls

There were a few months from 2012 to 2013 when I traveled with a group of Spanish girls. I met them through a German friend of mine and it always impressed me how they could stand to travel together for longs periods of time. They were five. Three sisters, each half-Spanish, half-Saudi (a very attractive combination), one of their Spanish friends, and a Colombian girl who lived in Spain. Five girls traveling together for months through some of the dirtiest places on Earth.

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Transitory Relationships and ‘Weekend’ (2011)

9/10 – Grilled Seal of Approval

weekend-poster

A nice little gay love story for the whole family. No, really it’s great. Realistic, passionate, well-acted, and involving. The plight of two gay men who only have a handful of hours to spend together before one of them leaves the country. I can identify. I’ve been there. No, I’m not gay (well, probably not), but I am an old soul when it comes to brief, wonderful, and transitory relationships.

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Stay Out of Trouble

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It’s been said that I can be a, “pain in the ass to watch a movie with.” I’m not going to attribute that quote to any one particular person, partly because I made up the quote, but also because I can imagine any of my exes telling me that. The sentiment, either in those words or similar ones, would be carried out in an exasperated tone and I would scribble a mental note to keep myself from falling into a similar situation again. I have some very particular preferences for enjoying a film, all of which are related to losing yourself inside the created piece for the entirety of its duration. So, no lights, no talking, and absolutely no questions will be permitted during the film. I’m not a masochist though, so I usually just watch movies that I don’t feel the need to invest myself in if there will be others in the room. Therefore, if Anchorman is on the screen, quip away, quip away. Comedies are fine, terrible movies are fine, mediocre movies are fine, Hollywood movies are definitely fine; in fact, the majority of movies that people usually want to watch are fine. The problem is I don’t usually watch the movies that are most often watched. I’m watching bizarre foreign films, indies, and strange experimentals that may require more than one viewing and at the minimum at least a fully attentive audience to fully understand.

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