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Gent, Flanders, Belgium | Annie Anywhere
Belgium, Destinations, Europe

How I Feel at Home Abroad

Would you live here? It’s a question I always ask my travel partner after a couple of days in a new destination. Would you deliberately leave all your belongings behind, pack the irreplaceable, choose the most important souvenirs, and let go of everything else? Does this new place here worth it? How do we choose if a place is worthy of us living there? Belgium made me think about it more than any other destinations. My Own Little Chaos I realized that to feel home, I need a place I can find in the same state I left it. Nothing annoyed me much than room attendants making my bed every morning and putting everything in well-organized piles. It kills creativity and personality. I like to create my own little chaos.  I guess that’s a reason why I always choose friend’s apartments and Airbnb over hotel rooms. I cannot recommend any hotels in Brussels, since I had a friend generous enough to host me during my whole trip. Honestly, I felt like I was living in an apartment in Montreal. Same kind of divisions, same kind of decor, everything at the place where I left it. Our Common Conflicts It may sound […]

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I saw puffin in Montreal.
Destinations, Europe, Iceland

I Saw Puffins in Montreal… and That’s Why I’m Going to Rio

I’m gonna tell you another love story…involving puffins. Why is there always animal involved in my love stories!? In Iceland, I passed an incredible amount of time chasing puffins. Ask Claude, my travel partner, how many kilometers I made her walked to see the famous birds. She was desperate with my obsession to see puffins. We climbed hills, we took ferries, we flirted with cliffs… there was no puffins. I started to think the emblematic bird of Iceland was like our emblematic moose in Canada and that I would never see it. Seriously, fellow Canadians, who of you often see moose, uh? Yeah. Exactly. No one! …Or maybe it’s my face that scared puffins and moose. So, I passed 14 days in Iceland chasing puffins everywhere my Lonely Planet told me there could be some, and I came back to Canada without the glorious picture. I must admit I didn’t take part in any Puffin Observation Tours. I wanted it to be unexpected. Picture by naggobot (Creative Commons) Last summer, a Brazilian friend I’ve met on Couch Surfing made me the surprise to come to Montreal. And as a very good host, I walked him around town and showed him some interesting […]

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Blog, Travel Tips

How to Survive All Inclusive Resorts – Tips For Adventurers

Okay, first world problem, maybe your idea of “surviving” isn’t related to the thought of an all inclusive resort by the beach. But, for us, adventurous backpackers, the idea to be stuck in a resort can be annoying. While we could venture in the countrt, we feel prisoners of the hotel resort. I hear you say “Why do you go there then”? Well… you know… sometimes, siblings get married and we have to make good impression. Or, there’s an amazing deal and it’s all we can afford. I’m certainly not a fan of resorts, but I know how to survive an all inclusive and make the most out of it. 1. Get informed on the location of the resort If you are lucky, you won’t be too far from the civilization. Before your arrival, get informed on the towns and villages nearby and how to get there. It’s not because you have everything you need (beach, food, alcohol) in the all inclusive that you cannot get out of it and explore. Get information about the local transportation. A good tip? Don’t ask at the information desk, they’ll try to sell you organized activities. Ask the barman, the maid, the lifeguard… they’ll tell you how they […]

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Blog, Nomade, Travel Tips

20 Ways to Write a Creative Travel Journal

No matter where we are, there are always interesting things to write about, and that is even more true when we are travelling. To avoid the boring ”I’ve been there and I’ve done that…” I give you 20 ways to boost your creativity while writing your travel journal. How to Write a Creative Travel Journal 1. Use your 5 senses. Write what you see, smell, feel, hear and taste at this moment. 2. Describe the sidewalk (Have you ever notice they are very different from a country to another?). 3. Go to a public place, close your eyes and write pieces of conversations. If it’s not a language your understand, try to write sounds. 4. Note the names of the streets where you walk. 5. Document what people wear. 6. Collect 5 pieces of paper you find on the ground and put it into your journal. 7. Do a vox pop with local. Ask them a simple question and note their answers. 8. Write a short story about the secret life of the stranger sitting beside you. 9. Note what you are missing from home, and what you like from where you are now. 10. Draw 5 new things you tasted. 11. Investigate how this destination […]

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Let's go!
Blog, Nomade

An accidental Social Experiment

My English is improving everyday as I practice more and more, writing for this blog and reading other amazing bloggers, but it has not always been the case. There’s a question I used to ask people I met along my way around the world: “What are you?” And though this question is grammatically incorrect, unless I wanted to be sure they were human, it has became a social experiment. Now, even if I know the question is incorrect, I keep asking, just to see what people answer. Meeting a lot of people from Americas and Europe, and less from Asia and Africa, my “experiment” is based on those two regions of the world only. So, when asked the question “What are you?”, here’s a few answers I got: From a woman from United States: “I’m a teacher.” From a man from Mexico: “I’m an engineer.” From a man from Italy: “I’m Italian.” From a woman from Germany: “I’m German.” From a woman from Canada: “I’m a student.” From a man from England: “I’m British.” And so it goes… None of them asked me what I meant by my question: if I wanted to know their nationality or what they were doing for […]

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