Good Reads

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Global travel blog that features travel stories on living, traveling and growing up in cities, villages and towns around the world!

Foshan, China: Living on Sixteen Kwai a Day

Okay, it was a pretty insane, self-abnegating thing to do. But it turned into a most entertaining exercise. I was working in Foshan, in China’s Guangdong Province, about 30km from Guangzhou itself. I wanted to save the highest proportion possible of my monthly wage. And I conceived the idea of trying to live in this […]

Tahaa, French Polynesia: The Antidote to City Life

There comes a time when all you want to do is abandon life as you know it and set out in search of the unknown. I went through something similar about two years ago. Back then I didn’t realize that the decision to move to Tahaa, a remote island in the French Polynesia, would prove […]

Mabul, Malaysia: It All Started with a Request

Bring a bottle of Martini Bianco. A big one, one and a half liter if you can. That was how the adventure started. Rubes, the Spanish Diver, was messaging me. We’d dived Richelieu Rock and the Similans in the Andaman Sea together and now he was in Mabul, off Malaysia’s Sabah province in Borneo. And […]

Quito, Ecuador: How to Raise a Family Abroad

We moved to Quito, Ecuador in 2004. Our three oldest children were in 6th grade, 4th grade and 3rd grade, and had up until that point been exclusively home-schooled. In the space of six months – from January to June of that year – we moved them to another country, enrolled them in school and […]

Wadi Rum, Jordan: A Disappearing Way of Life

There have been Bedouin people living in the area of Wadi Rum for thousands and thousands and thousands of years. Perhaps it is only in the last 30 years that they have been persuaded out of their desert into villages with schools, health clinics, electricity and water bursting forth from pipes. As a testament to […]

Tambor Beach, Costa Rica: Pet Pigs and Sea Monsters

When we landed in Costa Rica, I knew we were going to have an enjoyable time. The airport was an international airport, but it felt more like a small regional one. There was only one runaway and just a handful of terminals. It was pleasant getting off the airplane and not being totally confused as […]

Inle Lake, Myanmar: A Life Aviatic

Check out the prequel on Inle Lake here. I count myself lucky. Having lived in nearby Taunggyi for six months, Inle Lake was my weekend getaway (50 minutes of white-knuckle action by local bus down the scarp of the Shan Plateau). I always felt a frisson on arriving at Nyaung Shwe, the biggest town on the […]

Phnom Penh, Cambodia: The Demimondaine

I’ve been itching to write about Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s capital and one of my favorite cities. I could write about the whole place, Tuol Sleng and all (I have been coming here for a decade and know it well), but I wanted to rhapsodize about the city as an exemplar of urban Indochine (the area […]

Inle Lake, Myanmar: A Fragile Resource

What are we to conclude from the fact that Inle Lake was enlisted into the UNESCO World Network of Biosphere Reserves as recently as June 2015, a full five years after the Network had been established at the UN’s cultural HQ in Paris? The country was opening, but this was before Aung San Suu Kyi’s […]

Small Town, America: Self-Reliance and Independence

One of the benefits of growing up in a small town is that . . . it’s a small town.  Now, one might be of the mind, in this age of urbanization, that living in a small town is a disadvantage.  Well, I suppose it’s all about perspective.  So, let me lend you some. I […]