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One year abroad

Reclining Buddha

That's me at the Reclining Buddha in Bangkok, Thailand. Taken during the Songkran new year celebrations.

Three hundred sixty fucking five days. I can hardly believe it. I’m not sure I entirely believed I’d last for this long. And, actually, I was never really meant to (kind of). According to my original itinerary, I was supposed to be living & working in Australia by this point. Instead, I’m on the beach in Cambodia.

I’m not entirely sure where to begin in summarizing my one year abroad. And I definitely don’t know what to say about my future, because I just don’t know. In 52 weeks, these are some of my stats:

  • I’ve visited nine countries in 12 months: Spain, Morocco, Egypt, Jordan, Israel, India, Thailand, Laos & am currently in Cambodia
  • I’ve read 28 books, mostly fiction, though I’m now on a non-fiction kick
  • I’ve gone through two-and-a-half Moleskine journals (the pocket-size, square grid ones)
  • Nothing stolen, so far as I know
  • I’ve lost a few pieces of underwear in laundry & a Flip video camera (where did it go?!)
  • I’ve broken two cameras and one computer has died on me
  • I’ve been on 10 boat trips: a ferry from Spain to Morocco, a Nile River cruise, a tourist boat in the Bombay harbor, a Kerala backwaters cruise, the slow boat in Laos, four ferries in southern Thailand, and a 10-hour boat ride in Cambodia through some floating villages

There’s a lot more I’ve done obviously, but it’s hard to remember everything. Check back in a few days to see a list of all the silly travel rules I’ve broken.

Taj Mahal

The best photo of me at the Taj Mahal (and I look terrible) and some random chick jumped in at the last second. Photobombed!

The blog

I figured the easiest way to summarize my trip will be to simply rehash some of the stuff I’ve shared on this travel blog. Obviously I’ve had a lot more memories and experiences than what I’ve shared here, and sorry, but you’re just not going to get all of them!

Since departing for this trip, this blog has seen many ups and downs. For several months, I was hardly even blogging with just one or two posts a month. I’m so glad I decided to start this blog before I left and that I’ve mostly kept it up to date and informative. It’s been an incredible tool to learn and share new things, as well as for meeting other travelers.

These are some of my favorite posts from my last year of travel, if you want to play a bit of catch-up…

From Spain

From Morocco

  • The first place I visited in my ten days in Morocco was the beautiful blue medina of Chefchaouen.
  • Marrakesh quickly became one of my most favorite cities. I just fell in love with the sights & the sounds of the beautiful city. I also found quite a bit of design inspiration.
Kom Ombo Temple, Egypt

At one of about a gazillion temples I visited in Egypt. Loved being able to climb all over them, though.

From Egypt

  • Despite all the temples and pyramids, one of the sites I was most interested to visit in all of Egypt was the Alexandra Library. It didn’t disappoint!
  • The Sinai peninsula is home to one of my most favorite beach towns of the entire trip: Dahab where I sat and did nothing but talk to other people, read books & watch the moon rise each night over Saudi Arabia.
  • I also saw my most favorite sunrise of the past year on the peninsula – from the top of Mt. Sinai.

From Israel

Ajanta Caves

In India, I traveled a few days with two friends from Bombay to check out the famous Ajanta Caves. It was a fun trip & an amazing sight to see that many tourists skip.

From India

Ferry from Phuket to Koh Phi Phi

Waiting for the ferry from Phuket to Koh Phi Phi, I try out a make-shift rain cover for my bag (and my head). It was just a poncho I wrapped around my backpack.

From Southeast Asia

And some other stuff…

  • Turns out I’m pretty interested in making a difference in the world. Seems like it came out of nowhere once I started traveling, but maybe it’s been a part of me for a while and I was just ignoring it. Regardless, I contributed three small ways to make a big difference to an online eBook collection.
  • With my new-found spirit to change the world, I also found my voice defending my desire to leave home and travel long-term.
  • I swear I’m not always so high-minded. I like the fun stuff, too and that’s why I started a series about hipster cities around the world.

New to Adam is currently traveling around the world after quitting a job in graphic design in Boston. Follow him by (1) becoming a Facebook fan; (2) subscribing to the RSS feed if you’re into that kind of thing; or, (3) signing up for the monthly e-mail newsletter.

  1. Flipnomad says:

    time flies so fast man… wishing you more fun and adventures…

  2. Annie says:

    What a year you’ve had! I have enjoyed keeping up and am interested to see what the next year brings you! Let me know if you are still planning on hitting up Australia, I should be there at the end of the year!

    • Adam says:

      @annb04:disqus – Australia at the end of the year? Maybe! Though I honestly have no freaking clue…

      • Annie says:

        I should be arriving in Sydney sometime in September but will be around so just keep in touch! :) Enjoy SE Asia!

  3. Mariah says:

    wow, sounds like a pretty kickass year!

  4. Mariah says:

    wow, sounds like a pretty kickass year!

  5. Mariah says:

    wow, sounds like a pretty kickass year!

  6. Mariah says:

    wow, sounds like a pretty kickass year!

  7. Mariah says:

    wow, sounds like a pretty kickass year!

  8. Claire says:

    Congrats on an awesome year. I bet you’re not the same person you were when you started!

    • Adam says:

      @ed304022cc66b1e96f2ab17ac76fb0b0:disqus – so true! This year changed me in a LOT of ways!

  9. Abby says:

    Amazing year!! Cracks me up, in the kindest way, that you were never robbed yet lost a flip cam and broke a computer. The electronics really are the hidden cost of travel these days; I was robbed of a laptop and had one die on me when I was living abroad. Anyway, congrats!!!! It seems like just yesterday you were antsy in your cubicle. ;-)

    • Adam says:

      @3aaa43bb43ea370d6c8901a059923764:disqus – Haha! Thanks… The computer ended up being salvageable actually and I sold it for nearly $150! That covered half the cost of a new point-and-shoot I had to buy a few weeks ago in Siam Reap :/

  10. Serena Prammanasudh says:

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    You finally saw the reclining
    Buddha! Great! It’s ok that you don’t know what’s in store for your in the
    future. That’s the best part about the future, right?

    Your amount of books read is
    impressive. And nothing stolen? I do believe I have you
    beat in the camera category. In my 5 months in Peru I went through 2 of them.
    The first one was stolen, and the second was stolen from the mail (a few other
    small items were stolen from my package as well, but it was all sealed up like
    nothing happened!) So I had to buy my second camera within the time span of a couple weeks. When are you hitting South America, by the way?

    Thanks for summarizing your
    past travel adventures and posts…I will definitely catch up on those.

    Yes! I just saw your post
    entitled “This is my grad school.” I have had similar thoughts recently. All of
    my friends are going to prestigious universities that are 40 grand a year, or
    are doing internships in Washington DC. I’m staying in Oklahoma for a bit,
    hoping I get a scholarship to study for a masters degree in a developing
    country in South America. To each his/her own. I always say if you follow your
    passion, you will always end up doing something that you have reason to value.

    Always love reading about
    someone whose thoughts are similar to mine….I’ve been struggling with feeling
    somewhat inferior to my classmates in these past few weeks.

    But anyway. Congrats on a
    year abroad! What a feat!

    • Adam says:

      @53e24ede021f323e6071865cb25277e9:disqus – Hahah yep – finally got to the Reclining Buddha (on my third time in Bangkok). Thanks for sharing your comments!!

  11. Wow, what a great year and a big mixed bag of destinations – and not sticking to your plan is the absolute best thing to do! Wishing you just as much fun (and less broken/lost stuff) for the next 365 days, too.

    • Adam says:

      Thank you Amanda! Deciding to change plans on a whim has been one of the best things I’ve done so far. Including my latest last-minute decision to live in Berlin for the rest of the summer :)

  12. Aaechan says:

     well done, really admire you.
    will you continue traveling for the 2nd year?
    keep blogging and we are waiting to see. :)

  13. Anonymous says:

    Ive been travelling only 3 months, and Ive already had my laptop, passport, sleeping bag, sunglasses, and shoes stolen (3 different thefts).

    Because of the laptop and passport, I havent been travelling anywhere or blogging for a while :(

    I hope I still have the stamina you have after all this drama is over, and I get a fresh passport.

    • Adam says:

      Whoa – three thefts in three months and some big-ticket items?! At least you’ve still got an iPhone, no?

      Where are you hanging out while you wait out your passport?

  14. My only question is.. How did you survive? I mean, who gave you the money to eat and sleep?

    • Adam says:

      Hi Andrea,
      Nobody gave me the money to eat and to sleep? The money came from me working professionally for years, saving my money for as long as I remember and me making the most of what I had. Travel isn’t impossible and doesn’t have to be expensive. I’d recommend you check some of my Frequently Asked Questions to find out more.

  15. My Converse sneakers that went around the world | Adam's Travel Photos says:

    […] Travels of Adam: One year abroad […]

  16. You’re having quite an adventure there. I wish I had the time to travel as much as you do. It is probably great!

  17. liza says:

    Nice post.I would never have normally come here to read the blogs but I’m really glad I did. Will definitely be coming back.

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