There's more to Las Vegas than The Strip. Looking for day trips from Sin City? Here's five day trips to enjoy from Las Vegas.

On a Normal Life

Water is cascading down from the ceramic-tiled roof of my apartment. Under the gray summer sky, even the terracotta orange of the tiles are muted. And the rain, with its plump droplets and thunking onto the sand-colored stones below my window, has a whirr about it. A gentle humming that hums along with my heart. Which has been racing a lot lately. Racing overtime.

Yesterday marked six years since I arrived in Chiang Mai, Thailand. Six years since that first definition, that first identity of myself (aside from travel blogger and publicist) which defined me.

Americas Asia Blog Expat Life Expat Life Featured Nevada Thailand

Getting a Student Visa for Spain as an American

Step-by-step tips on how Americans can get a student visa to live in Spain via www.dtravelsround.com
For most of my adult life, I have dreamed of living in Europe. But, as an American, actually living in Europe beyond the Schengen visa limit of 90 in/90 out in a 180 day period makes it pretty much impossible (unless I get hitched to someone with an EU passport, which is never entirely out of the question).

So, what is a girl to do when those dreams of residing in this bubble of history and culture can’t be achieved without an EU passport? Answer: she gets creative.

Blog Europe Expat Life Expat Life Featured Spain

The House Hunters International experience

Chiang_Mai_Fair_Lady_House_Hunters_International_Experience
If you haven’t been following along lately, I recently filmed an episode for House Hunters International — Chiang Mai Fair Lady — which airs tonight. If you’re new to d travels ’round, welcome! I hope you find this as the place to motivate you to get up, follow your dreams and see the world (or at least live vicariously), and to take a stand and help Asian elephants.

My goal with this site is to share my experiences traveling the world solo, shed light on life as an expat in various places I rest my head, highlight cool and off-the-beaten-path spots that are worth checking out, and promote responsible tourism.

Keep reading to learn more about what it was like to film House Hunters International, as well as for a look at life as an expat in Thailand, my push to make people more responsible tourists, and what’s next for me.

Asia Blog Expat Life Expat Life Featured Thailand

10 signs you are a local in Chiang Mai

being local in chiang mai
After living in Thailand for more than two years, I like to consider myself a local.

Although, let’s face it: as a westerner in Thailand, I will never be a real local. Certainly, I can adapt. I can learn. But, I am not Thai and never will be.

However, I am decidedly more “Thai” than I was when I first arrived in 2012.

So much has changed, and if you’ve been following my life as an expat, you know it isn’t all easy. It isn’t all pretty. But, it is all worth it.

Asia Blog Expat Life Thailand

The year of living for me

the year of living for me
Big droplets of rain pummel the tar as we sit under the cover of a metal roof, watching the late-season storm cleanse Chiang Mai. Over icy glasses of Sangsom and Coke, and boozy chat about how to not get sucked into the abyss of Chiang Mai Expat-ness, an idea is born: 2014 is going to the year I get my shit together. Like, really get my shit together.

For more than a year living as an expat in Chiang Mai, I was caught up in the tricky social scene here. Maybe one exists where you are, too. It is one where a mass of people come together, not all like each other, but all are this weird mesh of a family. Days and nights are spent together and the one thing in common everyone has is that they are all there. They are all on the Ride of Expat Life together.

It isn’t always pretty, and at least here, in the circle I have, it involves too many nights swapping tales of past moments, cheap beer and being out way past well-behaved.

Expat Life Expat Life Featured

Why I’m grateful for Chiang Mai

Why I'm grateful for Chiang Mai
Three years ago, if you would have asked me about a future in Chiang Mai, I may have gone all glassy-eyed and distant. Chiang Mai was a dream to me three years ago. The elephants were a dream to me then, too. I lived in a world where I was not satisfied with my existence. I lived in a world, three years ago, where despite my (mediocre) efforts, I had fallen unhappily back into a world I didn’t want to be in.

Nearly fresh off my career break/solo travel through Europe, there I was, sitting at my parent’s home in Maryland, waxing melancholy at my choices and desperately trying to sort out how to rearrange my life to make it one I was grateful for again. (Note: I wasn’t not grateful for my life, it just wasn’t what I wanted).

I dreamed of Thailand travel. A world exploring Chiang Mai. Bangkok. Being surrounded by elephants and fighting for their well-being.

And then, just like that, those dreams came to life with a single e-mail from Lek Chailert, the founder of Save Elephant Foundation, the rescue organization I longed to work for.

Come to Thailand, she had written.

Asia Blog Expat Life Expat Life Featured Thailand

Questions to ask before becoming an expat

Making the decision to become an expat isn’t an easy one — there are many factors to consider when deciding to live away from your own country.

I have met so many people who tell me they wish they could be an living as an expat. While being an expat is amazing and life-changing, it is important to give this big decision some very serious thought. And, if you are going to become an expat without putting some thought into it, you will find yourself stressed once you touchdown in that foreign country of your choice.

Simply making the conscious decision to pack up and move abroad is not enough for long-term life as an expat. Before you take that leap — and yes, you should take that leap — it is necessary to really think about the logistics of becoming an expat and whether you are prepared to do so. Personally, becoming an expat in Chiang Mai was the best decision I have ever made.

Before you relocate, consider the following questions to ask yourself before becoming an expat:

Expat Life