Question & Answer #2

Posted: February 9, 2009    Categories: Q&A

Ryan Ricard via Facebook: What is the weirdest thing you ate? Tastiest thing you ate?

Weirdest thing would probably have to be grasshopper (which gave me food poisoning) or some BBQ pig intestines I got from street vendors in Bangkok. I also had some Mekong river weed in Luang Prabang, Laos, which was actually pretty good. It was like a very light cracker.

I had fish and chips in Rarotonga made out of parrot fish, which I thought was sort of odd.

The best foods I’ve had would include:

  • Foie gras from Piccaso’s restaurant in Las Vegas. I ate there at the very start of my trip. I had always seen it used on the Iron Chef and wanted to taste it myself. It was great.
  • Samgyupsal in Busan, South Korea. It basically giant slabs of bacon you cook at your table. You cut the pork with a scissorsand wrap it in lettuce. It was a memorable meal because I was taken there by a woman I met on the boat from Fukuoka to Busan.
  • Poisson Cru in Tahiti. This is the national dish of French Polynesia and it was great. I had it at a Roulette (lunch wagon) in Papeete. It is raw or seared tuna in a coconut sauce with cucumber and onion. It is really good.
  • Hommos with shawarma. I’ve been eating this all the time in the Middle East. It is just hommos with lamb and sometimes pine nuts mixed in. Simple but good. (FYI, Hommos is how I’ve seen it spelled in the Gulf, not hummus.)
  • Rambutan. I have discovered this fruit on my travels. I love it. I could eat it all day.
  • Japanese set dinner. I had several while I was in Japan. The courses may very, but every one was amazing. In Yakushima I had a crystal clear fish soup that was the best soup I’ve ever had in my life.

Bill Zalenski via Facebook: What do you carry on your daily excursions?

If I am just walking around I will usually have my wallet with me inside a special zippered pocket inside my front pockets, my iPod touch and my point and shoot camera.

If I am out at some tourist attraction, I will also have my camera bag with me. The contents of my camera bag is probably worthy of an entire post by itself. The bag just goes over one shoulder and has my SLR and my video camera.

If I am going out to eat I will bring my small backpack with me with a book and/or my laptop inside. If I bring my laptop I also bring a laptop cable.

@jessiev I’d love to know why you choose where you’re headed next. thanks!

The next countries I’ll be visiting:

  • Kuwait. I don’t plan on spending too much time here, but give the importance of the country in the last two decades, I thought I should visit if I was going to be in the region.
  • Egypt. You can’t really go around the world and not see the Great Pyramid. I am also going to cruise down the Nile, visit Alexandria, dive in the Red Sea and maybe visit a monastery in the Sinai.
  • Jordan. Petra is one of the New Seven Wonders of the World. Also, my favorite movie of all time is Lawrence of Arabia, which was shot in Jordan, so I’d like to see Wadi Rum.
  • Israel. Again, its the Holy Land. Its kind of a big deal. I’d like to swim in the Dead Sea and visit all the religious sights of Jerusalem.
  • Italy. I’m a sucker for Roman ruins and I’ve always wanted to visit the Vatican.

A better question might be why I am not visiting certain places. I want to get back to the US for a few months this spring, so I’m skipping some places like Turkey and Syria for a later time.

@urpisdream Any advice for people trying to figure out how they can start up their own ‘everywhere trip’?

Don’t worry about planning for the trip. Worry about taking care of things at home. There are a million reasons why people don’t take extended trips like this: job, home, family, etc. The actual traveling part is easy. Overcoming what is keeping you from traveling is the hard part.

Figure out how long you are going to be gone and what you need to take care of before you leave. It will be hard to take care of them once you are gone. Make sure you have access to money, talk to your bank, etc.

Don’t worry what people think about you leaving. They will change their mind once you are on the road.

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