Travel

Viva Colombia

I came to Colombia with nothing and I am leaving something behind.

A whirlwind of emotions were supplied on this venture through the jungle, mountains, and cities. There is no doubt in my mind that Colombia changed me. I don’t know how much or why—but it did.

So many laughs, smiles, and conversations were had. Friendships flourished. Beers drank.

I’m a firm believer in destiny, and Colombia, at this point in my life, was right where I need to be.

I will forever love the country and the people who reside there.

Until we meet again, viva Colombia.

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Travel

It’s Not All Sunshine and Puppies

For weeks I just haven’t had the words to say. Recounting all of this trip has left me at somewhat of a loss, a standstill. I am a man that has many troubles, as most do, and a lot more to learn.

In and out of alcohol fueled rants I mange to string together enough thoughts and feelings for somewhat of a recollection of this journey. Far from over and far from my final—not yet determined—destination, I’ll leave you with a messy compilation of brain spew…

Medellín, for better or worse, grew on me.

Like anything good, it just can’t last forever. This is not to say it didn’t teach me anything; because what it taught me is more valuable than gold.

The bass hits hard. Everyone around me is probably on some illect substance.

Medellin has, over the years, become a party city. Earned the ranks with the likes of Berlin, Prague along with others. Where someone could fit a minute escape into their everyday life.

For the most part this city, and this country, has a bad reputation. To say it is a party place. Well, that might be insulting. The people are the most friendly I’ve ever encountered. The food is good, and the views—incredible.

I’ve gotten sucked into this city.

She draws me in and grabs hold.

Maybe I have even fallen in love just a little bit but like with any fleeting relationship—I have to move on. This city of eternal spring has taught some important lessons to me over the last two weeks. A lot of inner conflict has been scuffed out here. If I can gather one thing from the time here it is this…

Fuck small talk. Give me intimacy.

Let’s talk about how we feel. Give me raw hard emotions, your opinions, your deepest, darkest fears.

I am way too open but that is what you get with me. It is the person I am. I love too fucking hard and too fucking fast.

I went on this trip to find something I lost, I may not even know what that is; but I am going to find out at some point.

It’s been 21 days since I left the states. 6 or so weeks since I quit my job, and maybe 14 days since I felt completely vulnerable. A shinning shimmer of hope and love came my way — so I rode the wave. I don’t regret a thing. It hurts, but I don’t regret a thing. Sometimes you have to trust people, and oftentimes they let you down. I won’t stop loving.

There are pieces of my heart scattered all around the world at this point. I’ve met so many people and seen so much.

Yet, I think that is what life is about. It’s about showing people what is inside your heart. Being vulnerable to everything life has to offer.

As I follow this path to enlightenment, I know I am not alone. As alone as I may feel when I’m surrounded by people that truly love me, I do know, I am not alone.

Life is pain, but sometimes, with a glimmer of hope. You are happy.

And for that moment, well, that is why we live.

Thank you, Medellin. You showed me things I’ll take to my grave.

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Travel

Destiny and Timing

Destiny and timing.

At this point I think this journey will be very enlightening to me. This time, I will stay awhile.

Sometimes you just fall head over heels in love with a place the second you step off the plane. Vietnam did that to me and now here in Medellin.

Those were my first impressions before I even got settled into some food, conversation with a fellow traveler, and some rest.

What happened next?

It all started on a metro ride.

Coming back from a market in Medellin a few travelers and I ran across this eccentric character of a man.

He began to speak with us in English and Spanish. The conversation continued, laughs were exchanged, smiles. The moments between a few metros stops will in fact stay with me for the rest of my life.

Next thing we know this man is walking us back to our hostal, explaining things about Colombia on the way, talking of his mother along with where he used to live. He gave us advice on what to do, see, and where to go.

Fast forward. We agreed to meet him at a later time outside of our hostal to get shown around.

I can’t explain to you what happened; because I can not process the joy and energy of this man or what it meant to me and the people I was with. Especially for me at this point in my life. This man wanted our company, and for whatever reason the universe brought him to us, as well as, us to him. The first stop off was a mall where I was more than put off by all the “fast food” until I finally saw some typical Colombian food. I explained my angst towards the whole mall food deal. The fact is, as humans, we need to be more open. The food was enjoyed. There was even ice cream. For a few more hours all four of us talked, joked, and walked through the rainy streets of Medellin until my feet blistered.

Cheers to Jimmy; cheers to all the Jimmys.

The selfless helpers, guiders, and chatters. Strangers who become something so beautiful it is unexplainable with words in any language and immeasurable by any calculations.

The world could sure use more people with an enthusiastic kind of spirit such as his.

Connect with people. Reach out to people. I promise you won’t be disappointed. Showing a little joy and love to your fellow humans will never, ever, not bring yourself inner peace.

Medellin has fully captivated me with its eternal spring, kind souls, and vibrant culture.

Until we meet again, continue to be more like Jimmy. And I’ll leave you with something my mother always tells me.

“People come into your life for a reason, a season, or a lifetime.”

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Travel

Today, we mourn

The second time I saw the Mediterranean Sea I was the most depressed and lonely I have ever been in my life.

There is a huge struggle when people’s minds outweigh them. Anxiety, depression, and the unknown take hold and don’t let go.

Bourdain was a personal hero of mine.

As I sit here, I can’t help to think what went through his mind when he decided to take his life. My personal problems and demons have always come out when I’m on the road traveling — I tend to let them go.

Will I suffer such a fate?

The world needs people that cross borders and barriers. Break down walls and traditions.

48 hours.

48 hours is all it took to get nestled away in a Colombian jungle hostel, ripping tequila and watching a beer pong tournament.

Fort Lauderdale to Cartagena, a few adult beverages, and busses.

It was like that one movie with the guy from the matrix. Speeding 80 mph up and down mountain roads in an overpacked shuttle bus. Bugs hitting the walls of my bungalow as I try to rest for the night.

Hammock sleeping, rum drinking, river jumping. Possibly smitten.

Let’s break down these walls, not build them. Teach, don’t take away.

Knowledge and love, I hope, can cure the sickness put on the world.

Maybe I’m as crazy as Anthony; possibly as hopeful.

R.I.P. Anthony Bourdain, today I drink to you.

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Philosophy, Ramblings, Travel

Why do we travel?

Is it narcissistic? Do we travel for ourselves? Or maybe we set out to find something we’ve always been looking for. No one answer to this question can possibly be correct. 

We travel to enrich something about life. To find purpose, to find meaning, to find center.

The road calls us, and like an addiction, we respond. Jetting off to the next place. 

So why do we travel, Logan?

For someone such as myself, this is life. The People, The culture. It is the stories, memories, and moments shared. It is the smells, tastes, sounds of a new city. It is something you have to find to understand, it is almost existential.

Most people live their lives waiting to live their lives. They miss the present. That is easy to do, yet, it is also easy to breathe in what you are experiencing. 

I’ve said before that we are not meant to plant roots but be free. Free in the moment, free in life. We are supposed to laugh, cry, wander. Going somewhere far from home can bring you peace, this gives you a new sense of what life really can be.

For some, travel isn’t the way. For people like me, well, it is. This life is the only thing I know, the only thing that makes me joyful. So I’ll continue to find new cultures, to eat all I can, and to share with people that I would have never met.

The road calls and I answer. 

Every. Damn. Time… I answer.

 

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Food, Travel

How spicy is the Vindaloo?

 

 

How spicy is the Vindaloo?

In like five minutes, I went from I’m ok to I’m going to die.

As the Vindaloo Goat started to hit me in waves I could barely utter the above sentence on video. 

No, the Spice Club is not an establishment that hosts an array of exotic dancers and cheap drinks. It is an Indian restaurant in Fort Myers, Florida and apparently the food is trying to kill me. 

And What Exactly is Vindaloo?

All joking aside, Vindaloo is an Indian curry made from vinegar, sugar, ginger, spices, and chili peppers, mixed with your choice of protein. 

Since I am a huge fan of goat, naturally, that’s what I went with. The heat hits around three bites in. Soon you are grasping for your beer or refreshment, and although the dish is spicy, the complexity of seasoning is not lost. There are flavors that dance off your palate, making you go in for more until it is too late.

Soon you are engulfed in sweat and tears.

The whole table I was with knew what they were getting into(as we all ordered Vindaloo).

Most of us cried. Ok, only me.    

They were tears of joy.

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Processed with VSCO with au5 preset

 

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Food, Guilty pleasures, Ramblings, Travel

Guilty Pleasures: Drunken Chinese Buffet

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After a few drinks everything seems like a well thought out idea.

You sit there, surrounded but chafer dishes full of food. The tables are wobbly wood and the seats are some cross between vinyl and plastic.

Order beer. It is the only drink that will drown out your inner voice telling you to go home.

Late night Chinese buffets are by far the furthest thing from a good idea. The warm cream cheese in the crab rangoon, questionable sushi rolls, any sort of chicken or seafood. Don’t get me wrong, it can be done right, and more often than not it is even tasty. It may sound like a solid answer to your drunken gastronomic cravings, but stop there, I warn you. Eating this food while intoxicated is scrumptious but will pull you down a slippery slip of self-loathing and acid reflux.

In the moment things seem fine, you may even get adventurous — are those raw oysters?

It can’t be all bad, right?

I am not bashing all buffets by any means, just saying that most of the time when a place allows you to wheelbarrow heat-lamp-warmed food into your gullet. Well, it is probably going to end badly.

Buffet-style westernized Chinese food is just not for the weak of stomach.

Can you handle it after a night of drinking or not? That is the question. Go find out for yourself.

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