Finding your own way is what makes traveling so exciting. Ölgi, Mongolia.
I’ve visited a total of 98 countries so far, including 14 in 2018. I count myself lucky especially considering that one of the most common regrets at old age is not having taken that one trip. My advice is to not put off traveling until retirement only to find out that when you are finally ready to go, your health is not.
Little girl striking a pose during a windy and cold day in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.
Kazakh man and son are checking on me to see if I was lost, while walking litteraly in the middle of nowhere. Kazakhs in this region are (semi-)nomads who raom the mountains and valleys. They are known for their friendliness and hospitality.
Humans are the only beings that cook their food. Eating is also an excellent time to share different perspectives and ideas as demostrated here in Areni, not far the Armenia-Azerbaijan border.
Many people (including me) are fascinated with Soviet art like this one in the central park in Tirana, Albania.
Europe’s shame. Gypsies have been discriminated against in Europe for more than a thousand years. Unfortunately for Gypsies, Europe has shed light on discrimination in all corners of the world with the exception of this one in its own backyard. In Romania gypsies are systematically neglected and among the poorest. Gypsy girl selling flower in a restaurant late at night in Brasov.
Travel, compared to other things you spend your money on, is so much more rewarding. It gives you a sense of compassion, putting yourself in the shoes of “strangers,” and better understand the perspective of the very person we belittle or attempt to change. In other words, create a global consciousness among populations that the cultural differences that make us unique are greatly overshadowed by what we have in common with each other. Never forget that when we look up we all see the same moon.
Man reading in a park in Tbilisi, capital of Georgia.
Only in Mongolia you’ll find a festival dedicated to the Golden Eagle, a fierce hunter. After a movie was made about this event (The Eagle Huntress), outside interest for this festival has grown. This picture shows 5 participants in this two-day event that crowned the most successful eagle hunter of 2018.
Istanbul, the largest city in Turkey, may as well be called the “cat city”. Stray cats roam everywhere and yes, they are revered. It is as if they own the city.
As for me, I look forward to more assignments and travels in 2019 in my quest to fill my bucket with mind-expanding experiences. Keep you posted.
(All picures were taken with my Iphone).