Two to Travel (And Tango)

Travel Tips and Inspiration From Millennials, For Millennials

Category: Travel Stories (page 2 of 2)

Why Even Married People Should Travel Alone: A Reflection on Solo Travel

Update: This blog also appears on The Huffington Post and can be read there!

We meet a lot of people on the road. And when we’re really lucky, we manage to meet ourselves.

Relationships, as I was told again and again during my engagement to Laura, change. People change, too, and so we find ourselves having to not only love the person we met, but also the person before us today, and the person who they will be in the years ahead.  Continue reading

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How WestJet Airlines Made Father’s Day Truly Special For One Incredible Dad

Some of you may have heard about Canadian airline WestJet when they pulled off an incredible Christmas surprise for some incredibly lucky passengers.

That video went viral and we expect their Father’s Day video will be no different.  Continue reading

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Understanding Why The World is Obsessed With Soccer or Futbol!

The World Cup is upon us and Laura and I, along with the majority of the planet, are downright excited for the festivities to get underway! So this week, I recalled the first time I went to a soccer game and began to understand what it’s all about: September of 2006 in Cochabamba, Bolivia. Below is my journal entry from that day. We’d love to hear from you. Are you a soccer fan? What was your first experience loving soccer? Who do you think will win the World Cup?

September 2006.

I never imagined my love for Monday Night ¨football¨ could ever survive while I lived in South America. But life has a way of allowing the good things to continue, even if in a completely different way. And so this past Monday I felt like I had fallen off the face of my own reality and into this incredible futbol environment I was witness to in Cochabamba, Bolivia. 

Attending my first professional soccer game in 2006

Attending my first professional soccer game in 2006

My sports fans will appreciate this because I tell you what I saw that night was sport in its purest form.  I paid $4 US and was privy to some of the best seats in the house: lowest level, center pitch (think 50 yard line my American Football fans)sitting on a thin sheet of styrofoam on a thick concrete slab. 

During the game, not a single person that I could see left their seats. There were no food markets selling overpriced items of food, no kids play areas or guys trying to entice you to sign up for a credit card by offering something like a free towel, features so common in American ballparks and stadiums. 

And the game was, intense. But more intense were the fans. Chants that seemed to be known by all but me were sung at the top of everyones lungs. People jumped up and down, danced, and gasped with every shot on goal. There were no eyes looking down, texting away on their phones. No, people came to this stadium on this cold night, for one thing and only one thing: To watch two teams battle it out in the most popular sport in the world. 

I have always loved American football, and will continue to do so, but leaving the stadium that night, walking the jubilant streets of a city celebrating in the success of their heroes, I happened across a park where young kids in tattered and dirty clothes excitedly ran and laughed around a grassless pitch with a lopsided ball, focusing intently on the task at hand: to get that excuse for a ball through what they called a goal, two stones set up only feet apart. It was that night, more than ever, that I could not help but have a moment realizing why it was that futbol, soccer, or whatever you choose to call it is the unifying sport of the world. Americans tend to focus on the Olympics as the biggest world event of them, but consider this: 909.6 million people tuned in at some point to the 2010 World Cup Final between Spain and the Netherlands. The Opening Ceremonies of the 2012 London Olympics? Close, but not at World Cup levels: 900 million. 

So long as we live in a world where 75 percent of the population lives in developing nations, an escape from poverty is found in the simple things in life: somewhat flat land, two objects to compose a goal, and anything that passes for a round object and can be kicked.


LMU De Colores Soccer

Preparing for the World Cup on a service and immersion trip to Tijuana, Mexico with Loyola Marymount’s De Colores program!



After I became obsessed with soccer, I picked up a great book that blended my interest in politics, economics, and sports. For a great read during The World Cup, check out How Soccer Explains the World: An Unlikely Theory of Globalization

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One Night in Bangkok- A Story of Getting Scammed While Traveling

Whenever anyone asks for travel advice on trips to Thailand, we typically start with “don’t spend more time in Bangkok than you have to.” To be fair, there are some beautiful, travel-worthy places in Bangkok. We climbed the steep steps to the top of Wat Arun for a beautiful view of the city, posed with the elephant statues at the grand palace, got our daily dose of cheap massages, and tasted some of the best street food we had ever had (until we got to Malaysia, of course).

The stairs were steep!

The stairs were steep!

But when we were sitting on uncomfortable benches at a train station in Surat Thani at 2am, leafing through our Let’s Go Trael Guide for Thailand, waiting for a train that was over an hour late, we couldn’t help but curse Bangkok. You see, we had spent the obligatory two days in the city. And, yes, it had been hot (95 degrees) and humid (80% humidity), but we had made every effort to explore the city. But what we’ll remember most about the city is not the view from the top of Wat Arun or the sounds of the prayer coins dropping into the buckets next to the reclining Buddha statue. We’ll remember that this was the place where we let ourselves get duped.

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Lessons Learned from a Volcano

In our first post, we talked about how the idea for this blog came around. We were on a day-long hike up and over a volcano in New Zealand, when we first started to envision a blog that focuses on what we love to do the most. But lest you think that we are accomplished hikers, who easily scamper up and down formidable pieces of nature while deep in conversation without a bat of an eye, I’m going to share with you what was happening that day when we weren’t talking about the blog.

I hadn’t really asked Patrick if he wanted to do this day-long hike. I just slid it into the itinerary when he wasn’t looking, and then we promptly forgot about it until we were actually driving to the national park. In hindsight, I should have done a bit more research. As we drove from Lake Taupo to Tongariro National Park, all of the trappings of civilization fell away, and we saw the volcano in the distance growing nearer and nearer. About 20 minutes away from the lodge, we realized that we might need food…or else we would be stuck paying the outrageous hotel restaurant prices. $30 for a pasta dish? No thank you.

When we returned to the hotel with our spoils from the closest gas station (20 miles away), we ran into the final group of hikers returning from the day’s trek. These slackers, who were returning 12 hours after departing that morning didn’t quite seem like slackers. They grasped onto their hiking poles as they hopped out of the van, with calves the size of my head, and they talked about how tough it was on their knees to go downhill for such a long time. We listened sympathetically, and absorbed none of what they were saying.

We awoke the next morning at 5:30am to whip up a quick breakfast and to prep for the hike. Patrick was ready in no time. I struggled out the door, throwing on my warmest long sleeve, sneakers untied, and hopped onto the van. The other 15 people in the van stared at us as we drove away…five minutes late. As we settled into our seats, and started to look around, we realized that we appeared a little different. Everyone else had hiking boots, walking sticks, waterproof pants and jackets…we had on sneakers, some basic running gear…your typical “urban walk in the park” outfits.DSC00795

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Millennial Travel Manifesto: Loving Hearts, Analytical Minds, and Curious Souls

Note: A dear friend of mine recently turned 25 and asked those of us who have seen 25 come and go to write a letter to the 25 year old version of ourselves as a birthday gift to her. When we talk about the why behind travel, this is it. What follows is what has become a bit of a millennial travel blog manifesto for us.

Poco a poco, que sera, sera. Little by little, what will be, will be. The universe has a mysterious way of revealing itself to us, and we must have our eyes and ears constantly open, because often the revelation comes as quickly as it goes.

But take a deep breath. You’re in a job you find unfulfilling and it seems that, day by day, your confidence takes a hit. Maybe you’re not as dynamic as you thought. Maybe that career you didn’t just dream about, but presumed would be yours is beyond your reach. Before you know it, your thoughts and frustrations become a self-fulfilling prophecy. If 30 is the new 20, what’s that make 25? I know it’s easy to get frustrated, easier still to doubt yourself in the midst of uncertainty, but know this: It can all work out, provided you have the will and the patience to make it so.

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