why i travel

When You Go Back to Bogota

October 12, 2014 Colombia
Leaving the Tatacoa Desert, Colombia

This is what it looks like to leave the Tatacoa Desert. Take it all in, because today you’re going back to Bogota. Back to the city, out of nothingness, back to the urban sprawl. Then back to California. But wait, before you go home, there’s gotta be one more crazy Colombian overland trip. First, there’s […]

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Lost and Found: Three Stories of Losing Valuables in Colombia and Getting Them Back

May 21, 2014 Colombia

When you tell people you’re going to Colombia, many don’t have to say a word to let you know how they feel. If you tell someone over the phone, you may notice a long pause or a sigh. If you tell someone in person, you may witness a widening of the eyes that asks, “What […]

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The Case for Being Rained In in the Middle of Nowhere with Little to No Internet Access

May 11, 2014 Colombia
La Casa de Francois in San Agustin, Colombia

You plan a trip to do this and see that, but often the best travel moments come unexpectedly between this and that. I go to San Agustin solely to visit an archaeological site, but when I arrive, the weather delays my plans and the setting, characters, and atmosphere align to replace them with subtle magic. […]

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Photo Essay: The Formidable Beauty of the Valle de Cocora

February 1, 2014 captured on memory card

It’s 6am when I go to Salento’s main square to catch a jeep to the Valle de Cocora. I’m surprised to see that they’re already full… or so I think. Once all the seats inside the jeeps are taken, there is still space. You can stand on the back ledge and hang on. I’d rather […]

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The Things I Loved About Medellin

December 9, 2013 Colombia
Cable cars in Medellin, Colombia

Medellin has an enticing energy that extends beyond its city limits. Before I even reached the edge of the city, I was already being pulled in by the strength of its magnetism. There’s a unique kind of aliveness in Medellin; a spirit that you find in a cities that have come out of a struggle […]

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And Then You Realize Why

November 23, 2013 Colombia
Colombia - Cartagena to Medellin Magic

This cab I’m in sounds like it’s about three putt-putts away from breaking down in the outskirts of Cartagena. It’s dark, I’m by myself, and I have all my luggage with me. I’m freaking out. The driver assures me we’ll make it to my destination as even the slowest buses zoom by us, leaving us […]

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Photo Essay: Finding Paradise in Tayrona National Park, Colombia

October 14, 2013 captured on memory card

I can’t believe this is the path I’m on. Walking through the jungle, I’d heard waves pounding against the shore in the distance, thundering and echoing like a promise of magnificence to come. Now I’ve reached a clearing where I see the jagged edges of the mountainous jungle reaching into the ocean. The transition between […]

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Riding the Wind: Paragliding Over the Countryside Near San Gil, Colombia

September 18, 2013 Colombia

One day, I knew I wanted to fly. Not for the practical sake of getting from one location to another, but to experience the sensation of soaring over the Earth with the wind blowing against my skin. While I have this in mind as I go to Colombia, I’m not sure if I’ll actually take […]

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