The Breakdown - Trump Immigrant Ban & The Future of Travel

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The Breakdown - Trump Immigrant Ban & The Future of Travel

Less then 30 days into the Era of Trump and Obama's successor has wasted no time to begin destroying the credibility of the United States. Via Executive order Donald Trump held fast to one of his must divisive promises and banned countless folks from entering the nation. As the judicial branch of government fights to beat back Trumps order. Nomadness' own BarrisTourista bka Tyra shares some detailed legal analysis of what Trump's Ban means now and going forward.

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I am BarrisTourista. The “barris” portion is for barrister, or lawyer. But I am by no means an expert in immigration law. So I called upon one of my attorney colleagues, Lindsay Toczylowski, the Executive Director of Immigration Defenders Law Center (http://www.immdef.org/). She was on the front lines this past weekend, spearheading the efforts at LAX to get detainees— including children—released from custody even after a federal judge ordered that they could not be held. Her weekend was long and her devoted passion to ensure the rights of immigrants has long been documented even before this weekend. So we asked her to weigh in on the recent legal issues that have arisen and what they mean for travelers.

Immigrant Defenders Law Center is a next-generation social justice law firm that defends our immigrant communities against systemic injustices in the legal system. We envision a future where no immigrant will be forced to face immigration court alone. Our programs are a last step towards the long-term goal of providing universal representation to all immigrants facing deportation. We provide deportation defense representation to approximately 700 adults and children annually. Since the executive order was signed last week, our attorneys have been on the ground at LAX trying to help affected travelers and families.

What is the situation with the Executive Order regarding immigrants that was just signed?

Trump signed the “Muslim Ban” Executive Order on Friday, January 27. The order prohibits immigrant and nonimmigrant entries to the United States of individuals from the following countries: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen for at least 90 days. Further, the order states that the U.S. will not be receiving any refugees from any country for the next 120 days.

Since the 27th, travelers, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and others have been trying to understand its implications as it was signed without clear directives to affected federal government agencies. Because there was no warning, many travelers were stuck after learning of the order after travel had already commenced. There has been mass confusion at airports across the world. There has also been confusion regarding whether this applies to legal permanent residents returning from trips abroad, and the messages coming from DHS, the White House, and others have been contradictory.

How will this order affect travelers internationally?

If you are a national from one of the 7 affected countries, advocates are recommending you do not leave the U.S., as it is likely you will not be able to return while this ban is in effect. This is also true for anyone currently living in the U.S. as a refugee, regardless of their country of origin. Further, it is clear from the language of the order that the number of countries designated as “detrimental to the interest of the United States” may increase, and there are leaked “draft” executive orders circulating the internet that indicate this may be imminent. Therefore, for those in the United States who are nationals of any Muslim-majority country, international travel is risky at this time as it is unknown when Trump may sign another executive order and expand the list of affected countries.

What are the repercussions of this order that some people may not be contemplating but could arise in the future?

This ban sends an official message of exclusion of Muslims from entering the country and Trump is masking that bigoted message behind “national security concerns.” Also, by banning refugee entrants at a time when there is a refugee crisis in Syria, the U.S. is turning our backs on those who need it most at the time when the situation is most critical. This will not make us safer, and sadly will likely make us more vulnerable in the future.

The ACLU has gotten an emergency stay of Trump’s order? What does that mean for immediate travelers and those traveling in the near future?

There is a lot of litigation happening simultaneously and stays and TROs have been granted in various jurisdictions. Here is a good clearinghouse that is cataloging all of the suits: https://www.clearinghouse.net/featuredCase.php?id=40

One major issue is that even in light of the stays issued, it is unclear that DHS, and particularly Customs and Border Protection (CBP), are abiding by the Judge’s orders. There has been a complete stonewalling of communication from the agencies to attorneys working in the airports, and because of that we have no way to monitor compliance. The potentiality of agencies ignoring or only selectively following federal judge’s decisions and stays raises real concerns about the rule of law in the U.S. during this administration. What we saw this weekend in terms of confusion within the government agencies, and at times defiance of the Judge’s orders, is truly frightening and unprecedented.

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It's getting real out there so it's vital to arm yourself with knowledge. Hop over to Tyra's site for the full post on this latest travel development.

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Travel To The Center of Yourself - Spiritual Growth through Travel

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Travel To The Center of Yourself - Spiritual Growth through Travel

Travel effects us all in different ways. Throughout the Tribe you'll encounter different views on what travels means, the role it has in people's lives and numerous ways travels has drastically changed lives. Nomadness Tribe member Zya shares an incredibly personal travel tales with. Below you can read her journey through Southeast Asia.

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Spiritual growth is a bumpy journey to your truest self sans religion. It’s a freedom that has nothing to do with materialism and everything to do with refreshing and engaging your soul from the outside in. — Psychic Zya.

This, in all honesty, is how I personally define spiritual growth.

In my opinion this growth, this expansion, is especially accelerated by traveling to places that are vastly different from your native culture hence the explosion of development I experienced while backpacking in Southeast Asia for over four months.

Because let’s be real: when you’re from the U.S. or the West in general, going to a resort in Miami versus traveling through a rapidly developing part of the world are two completely different types of travel.

One luxuriates in what a Westerner knows and is comforted by; the other destroys every notion of a Western ideal, thus catapulting you into a state of trusting your intuition more often while paradoxically letting your guard down as you stare and stumble in awe and wonder at the scenes, sights, smells, and tastes you encounter.

Much like a child.

This is the childlike state of being that sets the stage for spiritual growth. – Psychic Zya

While I can’t guarantee results for everyone, I will say that the following are just three of the beautiful and dynamic ways that the enchanting countries of Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, and Malaysia grabbed ahold of my heart chakra and gently opened it up, petal by petal.

Southeast Asia Forced Me To Ditch Western Culture:

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Sopping heat, foreign languages, motorbikes hosting families of four, delicious (though sometimes bizarre) dishes, and a daily game of charades to make myself understood certainly made me ditch any notions of “Western” anything. This constant cultural dance kept me on my travel A-game while forcing me to really get to know myself on a whole ‘nother level, trusting, honing, and relying on my intuition like never before. I loved every minute of it, even when I didn’t think I did.

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It only gets deeper as Zya takes us on her Asian adventure and personal journey. Check her full story out here!!

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FROM DEPRESSION TO LIVING MY DREAMS

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FROM DEPRESSION TO LIVING MY DREAMS

Nomadness is never lacking for inspirational life stories. Mable Taplin shares her personal tale of Depression and how she reestablished herself in this powerful blog. Take a look at some of her experience below.

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The last couple of days have been surreal! I have been moving this year! When I sat still long enough to reflect that I traveled to 30 countries on 6 continents in 354 days, I was overwhelmed with gratitude!!

I wanted to share how I funded my Round the world trip. Learn how I saved $30,000. 30 countries on 6 continents in 354 days! This trip literally gave me life!

Christmas time is my favorite time of the year!  In fact, I am one of those people that would put up a Christmas tree in September if I knew that my family and friends would not harass me.  I love everything about Christmas, the decorations, singing Christmas carols, giving gifts, Santa Claus, watching old Christmas movies…. I mean everything. I’m getting distracted just thinking about it.

However, the Christmas season of 2014 was quite different.  I did not have my usual over zealous excitement about Christmas.  Yes, I put up a tree, but I neither hosted nor attended one party. I bought very few gifts and I was sleeping more than usual.  I struggled getting out of bed everyday for several weeks.

I lay awake many nights pondering what was wrong with me. I could not understand why I could not get into the Christmas spirit.  I could no longer ignore that I was not happy with my life.  I did not like the long hours I worked at my 6-figure corporate job. I felt socially stagnant and the Chicago winters were killing me.  I was over going to the same social events seeing the same people.  And I really didn’t look forward to the obtuse commentary from my family at family gatherings about my single status.   I was stressing about everything.  I felt like I desperately needed a change.

So, I began to revisit the dream that I had in my twenties of living outside of the United States.  I asked myself many questions:  How am I going to move?  How much will it cost?  Where will I go? What will I pack?  What will I do with my stuff?  What am I going to do when I get there?

Well, I answered all of these questions and more.  As of this blog post, I have traveled to 29 countries this year!  This has been the most exciting and fulfilling time of my life.  I AM LIVING MY DREAMS!  Many people have asked me how I did it so I’m finally slowing down enough to share. 

 

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You can visit Mable's site here to see her full post which is jam packed with details about what she did and how she efficiently made it happen.

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Palawan Honeymoon!!!

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Palawan Honeymoon!!!

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There are many reason to see the world. You can be seeking personal discovery, new business ventures, any number of things but there is definitely an extra special the love linked celebration that is a Honeymoon. Eve Kim shares her Honeymoon experience on the beautiful island of Palawan. If this is your first time hearing of this gem. Check out Eve's feedback and add this Philippine isle to your travel list.

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The first thing we did was book our couples massage for the next day. After getting settled in our private villa, we walked around the island, had an early dinner and went to bed early.

The next morning, we enjoyed our awesome, outdoor aromatherapy massages side by side and felt refreshed, rejuvenated and ready for our second day on the island.

For the next few days, we went snorkeling and kayaking, rode bikes, and played table tennis. We rented a private boat and went island hopping to Cowrie and Starfish Islands. The private boat was just $40 for the day. 

If we had more time, we would have definitely gone to the El Nido Islands (4-6 hours away from Puerto Princesa). We would have also spent time at Sabang Beach and the underground river near the Puerto Princesa airport. I would suggest that people take a one week – two week vacation to really enjoy the different activities in these areas.

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Click here to see Eve's full Honeymoon recap with a more detail into how much Palawan would cost you to take in all this wonderful island has to offer.   

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6 WAYS TO BEAT YOUR PANIC ATTACKS WHILE FLYING

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6 WAYS TO BEAT YOUR PANIC ATTACKS WHILE FLYING

With the arrival of the new year many of us have our list of major acts we're wishing to accomplish. Travel is a big one for a lot of people but quite a few of us suffer from fear and anxiety towards the actual act of travel, specifically flying. Deana Bobbi wants to see folk confront and beat their issues with flying. She's got quite a list of methods for the job so take a look below for some solid advice. 

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There is no worse feeling then wanting to do something really bad, but being horribly afraid that you won't ever be able to do it.

That's exactly how I felt about traveling abroad...

While cost was a factor, my biggest fear was that I would not be able to last though the plane ride to my destination without having a panic attack and completely losing my shit thousands of feet in the air with no escape.

But at the same time, I didn't want to let that fear hold me back.

The downside of my anxiety is that one of my biggest triggers is not having control of my situation. Which no matter how much you plan and prepare for, I have come to learn is pretty much a given when it comes to taking a 6 hour plane ride and traveling to a foreign country.

So what how do you do it? 

How do you keep from losing your shit in front of hundreds of strangers on a plane, over an ocean with literally nowhere to go?

In my case on the flight to Paris, you don't. That's right I actually did wind up having a panic attack half way through the flight from Iceland to Paris...and it was bad, like really bad. 

But that leads me into tip number 1 on concurring Panic attacks while flying.

1) Acceptance & Mentally Preparing Before Your Flight
As much as I would have loved to live in this ideal world where I make it through a 8 hours flight without even a glimmer of a panic attack. I know myself better than that, I was literally putting myself in a situation that was oozing with triggers. 

I had to accept even when just booking my flight that "hey...there is going to be the large possibility of me having a panic attack" and I had to get very comfortable with that uncomfortable reality.

While this may not actually seem like a helpful tip, there is a lot to be said about facing the reality of your situation and people always say acceptance is half the battle. If I come to terms with the possibility, I can better prepare for it. 

Making sure I have my gum (my way of coping with attacks), ensuring that I destress in the days leading up to the flight, conducting positive self talk about my vacation and the flight and normalizing my panic attacks.

2) Having A Support System
If you're not traveling alone, make sure that the person you're traveling with knows about your panic attacks and anxiety because there is nothing worse than you losing your shit and then person next to you losing their shit too because you start to sweat and shake uncontrollably.

Your also going to want to ensure (if you can) that you really trust that person and that they are a good personal support system because sometimes when all else fails and your deep into a panic attack. Having someone there to coach you through it can really be the most important factor in bringing you back down trust me...I know.

About halfway through the second flight to Paris (around 4 am), I felt it happening. It started off simple, I felt like I was having a hard time breathing. The air suddenly felt thick and I wasn't able to get enough air into my lungs without a struggle, I tried to adjust the AC flow but it didn't help. Then my hands started to sweat, my stomach started to turn and the next thing I knew I was having tremors that I couldn't control.

I was having a full blown panic attack worse one worse that I had had in over a year. I was in the window seat, trapped and scared my boyfriend was next to me just waking up from a nap and I had to tell him. I was embarrassed, could barely talk without my voice shaking from the tremors that were lasting anywhere from 5 to 30 seconds at a time. 

I couldn't control it.

He put his hand on mine and told me I was going to be fine, he started talking to me helping me focus on breathing and not trying to fight the tremors. He...was amazing, in my most vulnerable moments he helped me not feel afraid, he helped me feel normal and not scared.

3) Distractions
A huge factor at getting past my panic attack on the flight was distractions. There comes a point during panic attacks I've now learned that even your personal distractions (my gum) no longer work. You're honestly just too far gone for you to be your answer.

This was another way my boyfriend was a huge help in the 15 minutes (seems like a lifetime) or so that my panic attack was at it's worst. 

He distracted me, once he realized holding my hand and breathing wasn't working he swooped in with plan B. 

Rock Paper Scissors.

I know it sounds silly...but that was the point. He knew he had to get my mind off of what was currently going on...but how? He challenged me to a Rock Paper Scissors battle. At first I didn't really give in, didn't try to play because I was so focused on my attack. But once I realized he was starting to win...I got competitive, I wanted to win, I wanted to try. 

It became more about guessing what he was going to throw out and about 5 minuets into the battle, I had won and the panic attack was gone.

The key was not putting energy into the panic attack. 


4) Don't sleep before your flight
Listen...major key...cloth talk lol

STAY THE FUCK UP all night (or day) before your flight if you have to so you can sleep through every ounce of your flight. 

On the flight to Paris I made the huge mistake of being very well rested before my flight,  so when I actually got on the plane I was lit up like a Christmas tree on December 24th. Completely awake and all the way on, nothing made me sleepy. 

Not the plane ride, not reading, nothing.

I was completely aware and my brain was on a thousand, which I think helped spark my attack. On the way back from Paris however I stayed up packing and didn't go to sleep until about 2 hours before I needed to be up and on the way to the airport.

Outcome: I was knocked on the entire flight back. The only time I actually woke up was to change planes when we landed in Iceland. 

It was absolutely perfect.


5) Emergency Medicine
Long flights may be the only time I feel as though having anxiety medicine is appropriate for me and even then its only for emergencies.

I had my Dr prescribe me a small dose of pills about a week before I left. It was nice to know that I could have them in my back pocket just in case things became to much to handle but the idea of going on a new medicine and reading the side effects of what I was prescribed had me dreading taking them.

My personal hold up about medicating my anxiety has always been the side effects, this was no different. Had things gotten really out of control I would have used them but I was completely committed to going at it non medicated.

6) Don't get Drunk
Have you ever had a panic attack drunk?

I mean I haven't but I can only imagine it to be hell.

I know people often use alcohol help soothe our nerves and relax but one too many sips and a relaxed  mind can turn into a belligerent mess so quickly. Not to mention the possibility of turbulence...air sickness nope. 

I shall pass and I suggest you do too. 

Plus what if you actually need to take your emergency medicine we talked about? Alcohol and medicine...on a plane? This picture we're painting just keeps getting worse lol.

Lets just save the drinks as a celebratory thing for once we land k?

BONUS
When the plane takes off, try having something in your hands to hold on to and rub. If that is not possible try stretching as soon as the plane beings to go into the air this will help your body tense and then relax which will ultimately give you a sense of relaxation and aid in relieving you of your anxiety.

If you're new to trying coping methods that don't involve medicine for your panic attacks. PLEASE read my previous blog were I outline 7 daily practices you can use to ease anxiety and combat your panic attacks when they arise. You can find that blog post HERE.


Hopefully these tips will help those of you planning or dreaming of an amazing vacation and the only thing holding you up is the fear of that long long flight. People with anxiety at the end of the day are just regular people and as long as we have the right tools at our disposal we can make it though anything.

Without a doubt, there will be surprises, mishaps and things will not always but up to you and on your time but there is no reason that you should feel as though you can't live a fulfilling and fun life because of anxiety. 

Its just a small piece of who you are, not the deciding factor on what you can do.

Until Next Time,
XO Deanna

 

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Evita's Tops for 2016: Annual End of Year Reflection

It's another year, and I guess I can officially say, after doing my third, that this is officially an annual thing we got going on here. I work so much, do so much, and rarely take a moment to reflect. But, I make it an absolute point to stop and look back, at least this once, at the end of every year, and breathe it all in, while purging it all out before the New Year. In no particular order.

THEME: Every year presents to me a new overarching theme. Not one that is looked for, but one (usually difficult) that is revealed to me over the 12 months. 2016's theme was rejection. Every year, especially as an entrepreneur, comes with nos. Lots of them. The trick is to stay at it, and as enthusiastic about it through the nos as you do to the yeses. This year I felt rejection in ways I'd never had before in my life, and it was the hard lesson of my year. 

PEOPLE:

1. Airis 2. Tiffany Aliche  3. Adrian  4. Caesar  5. Brittney  6. Sarafina  7. Dad  8. Enovia  9. Danielle Young  10. Vaughn  11. Glenda 12. Ashley S. 

BOOKS:

1. Big Magic By: Elizabeth Gilbert  2. The Celestine Prophecy (again) By: James Redfield  3. MADE IN... coming  4. Finding One By: Vaughn Dabney

5. What I Know For Sure By: Oprah Winfrey 

MOVIES:

1. The Big Short

2. Joy

3. Southside With You

4. 13th 

5. Birth of a Nation

6. Before The Flood 

SONGS:

1. Under Control - The Internet

2. Days Like This - Shaun Escoffery (Spinna and Ticklah Club Mix)

3. Friends Are Wasted - Snakeships Ft. Tinashe and Chance The Rapper

4. 6 8 - Gabriel Garzon- Montano

5. Consideration - Rihanna & SZA

6. All Night Long - Beyonce

PLACES:

1. Silicon Valley - San Francisco, CA    2. Newark, New Jersey    3. Megyer, Hungary 

4. Santorini, Greece    5. Bocas Del Toro, Panama

CONVERSATIONS:

1. Jason telling me Max was born

2. Tiffany Aliche, 1st phone conversation after I'd moved to Newark

3. Airis, nearly daily. Laughing so hard I could pee. 

4. Caesar, laundry room at 2am. When keeping it directly real, just had to happen. 

5. Vaughn...many while I was in Los Angeles. Most poignant was you helping me realize, and confirming that I'm writing my memoir for my Mom.

6. Elizabeth Gilbert giving me memoir writing advice in front of over 1000 people at Orpheum Theater in LA. 

7. Red..or Green Carpet, at The Root 100. #BlackgirlMagic moment I had with Danielle Young.

 

8. My first date with Max. But even more intoxicating, the conversation after dancing all night at The Plaza Hotel for the Harlem School of the Arts Masquerade Gala. You are unlike any human being I've ever come across. 

9. Chip Connelly hugging me, giving me a kiss on the cheek, and hitting me with the 'I know who you are' after introducing myself to him at Airbnb Open in LA. Mind. Blown. 

 

10. A dear friend's revelation that she was in a domestic abusive relationship no one knew about. I don't know if I've ever cried that hard at someone else's pain. 

11. Peter Kovac and I talking entrepreneurship in Hungary. 

12. Getting the message from Siobhan to look up a newspaper article about Poughkeepsie, and finding out a percentage of people you knew in middle school and high school were going to prison. 

13. Being in bed with Age, and us identifying and talking about our best friends. 

14. The first run in, post break up, with Age at one of our favorite parties. One of the most emotionally conflicted conversations of my life. 

15. Sarafina and I during Thanksgiving, reflecting on family. 

16. Kellee and I at #NMDN Conference. Both, in tears, knowing we are walking in our purpose. I love everyone in this photo by the way.

 

17. PIX11 Anchor Sukanya telling me how proud she is of me and all I'm doing with Nomadness, after we went live for our....I think 4th Live television travel segment. 

18. Ardonna in Bocas Del Toro, Panama. 

19. My speech at the last dinner in Bocas Del Toro, Panama. Being ready. 

20 & 21. Danny Simmons and I at Art For Life. 

"Danny, I need a favor." - Me

"Who?" - Danny

"Soledad O'Brian" - Me

"Ok find her table. I'll do the introduction when I get back from the bathroom." - Danny

Words actually CANNOT express how much Danny means to me. Like, seriously. 

Fast forward one week later.

Phone rings. Look at phone to see who it is. 'Soledad O'Brian'. Boom. 

 

22. Erin in Rio, New Year Eve night, in front of the Chinese food spot. She got me. She got my 'why', and in that moment I felt like I had a sister. 

23. All the conversations I had with myself at Collision Conference in New Orleans, listening to the speakers talk about the crucial nature of the right team. 

24. Caesar, the conversation that proved to me that no matter how close we were, there were still fundamental parts of me that you missed/or didn't believe existed. Masculinity & femininity. Public & Private. My gut tells me in the last four months, your views might have changed. I told you this conversation really pissed me off before, but I thank you so much for it. You made me define femininity, for myself, with a level of precision I hadn't prior. You are of such value in my life. Thank you. 

25. Skift Podcast with Shannon Washington of Parlour Magazine, and Sarah Enelow at Skift. Dopeness. 

26. Airbnb HQ Crew, over drinks, in Silicon Valley. Valerie and Jeff, man. Thank you. Just, thank you. 

27. Kelis & Vaughn at her food truck. Quick chat on tech and travel. Realizing she's much of what you imagined she'd be since you've followed her in Middle School.  

28. Emotional conversation with my agent about writing my memoir. Swallowing all the pride, and rejection of sort. Starting again of my own accord. 

29. Talking about motherhood and relationships with Kimberley. 

30. Calling Kali to talk about the realities of our friendship.  

31. Building with Danielle James at Neuhaus. 

32. Ashley S. and I while painting my office... her in her underwear. Hilarious. And vibing off our Ginger Grits.   

33. My Step Father on Christmas Day

34. Meeting Jasmine and hearing her story about her son H's rare form of cancer and me just thinking sometimes life isn't fair. Also us sneaking off the meditation retreat for snacks. 

35. Asking Rebecca if she sees herself as beautifully as other do...and the reaction to that. 

36. Brittney...about the role happiness plays in our work. 

37. Dec. 31. 2016. Glenda's house. Literally, ushering in 2017 with pure emotional rawness. Not just mine, but the freedom in sharing of others. There were maybe twelve of us in her apartment, and we are all dynamic. Answering the two questions posed, "What is your truth? How does your work reflect your truth?"  I cried the good cry. The cry that's been coming up in therapy. The cry of feelings of loss and rejection...and sisterhood. I think I finally realized how loved I am, in a room with my best friend and strangers who became brothers and sisters last night. I don't recognize the love that IS shown often enough. When I feel love has been taken from me, it cuts at the bone. Words kind of don't suffice for last night's sharing, and openings, as we bring in 2017. I am so grateful. So so grateful. 

SAYINGS/WORDS:

1. Listen....    2. Bruh   3. Right.   4. Resonate    5. Energy

LESSONS:

1. Self-care and accepting love are not restricted to just the big actions (going to therapy, retreats, etc...) but in the everyday micro actions. The calling a friend and saying, 'I'm sad. I need you today.' And letting people show up for you. 

2. In wanting people to treat you as human, be human. Don't go from feeling to process in the same sentence. It doesn't allow entry for help. State the feeling, take a beat. 

3. I need to start identifying and filling up on love, even if it isn't the type of love that I'm desiring or that I feel I'm deserving of from a specific place/person....because I am loved. 

4. I want my compliment in a relationship, not my copy.

5. I signed up for all that comes up with entrepreneurship and relentless dedication to my dream...my team did not necessarily. Take heed that your process, and time frame, may shift your team. And that is absolutely fine. It's beautiful, actually. 

6. The Universe is delivering the exact type of new energy and blood into my business that I've asked for. Transitions are tough, but necessary and beautiful. I'm excited. 

7. I'm aware of the work and reaping that are here for 2017. It both invigorates, and scares the shit out of me. 

8. I've become a faster dater. No letting men linger in my life unnecessarily. 

9. I'm a lot for people. Regardless of gender. I require emotional intelligence and evolution on a level most people haven't touched yet on their own, let alone in a relationship. This is one of the problems that I believe in attracting my life partner. However, I don't ask for anything unreasonable, and it lets me know that the man who gets it, is truly THE ONE for me. As I have also been built FOR HIM. (thanks Chris)

10. When single, I need to have sex once every three months or else it clouds my judgment and I get very touchy and impatient. It actually clears my head, and I relax. So, if you are called upon for that specific purpose, please be consistent in just that. Nothing more. Just that. 

11. I'm really really really ready to move onto events for Nomadness. 

12. On their own, people are seeing and orating the urban travel sector with 360 degree glasses. They see us, why we are different, and great. That feels good. Reaching a place where I don't have to explain. Doing my job. Thank you. 

13. I don't believe in 5 year plans. I actually don't believe in any plans past 2 years. It's too elusive after that time for me, and creates an easy space for people to become complacent. I can make actionable items today, for something 2 years from now, and it still feel connected. My sweet spot is 4-12 months out. I need to feel connected to the goal, and too much time away kills that connection for me. 

14. Moving into my new loft changed way more than where I lived. It changed my mindset. It changed my network. It changed my friendships. It changed my hustle. It changed Zorro. It changed me. The last 4 months condensed has actually been the biggest life transition I've had personally in years. It's been jarring and beautiful. 

15. Two best friends should avoid going through a break up at the same time, by all costs. It's very difficult, especially for an empath, to be a great supportive friend to someone in a breakup, while they themselves are in a space of fragility while going through their own. 

16. I talk to your soul, or nothing. This is how I prefer to communicate. 

17. My love language in intimate relationships switches from Quality Time, to Acts of Service in friendships. Crazy once I realized how intensely they can switch. I believe this is also an insight into how some can misunderstand how I show love. 

18. I've matured a lot in business. Mainly because I know our uniqueness and my ideas are gifts given to me to manifest, in my style. I cannot be touched. I'm the secret sauce. 

19. Dreams absolutely come true. Even far fetched ones. Even last minute ones. Thank you #SXSL!

20. I'm an alchemist. 

21. Taken from Elizabeth Gilbert's 'Big Magic'...talk to your ideas. Literally talk to them, like a person. They float around, landing on humans to bring them to life. If you aren't in the place to do so, recommend someone else for it to land on. But talk directly to them. 

22. When I'm in a relationship, and vocalize a non-negotiable...and you ignore it, I have to leave the relationship. This year I got the closest to cheating on someone that I've ever been in my life. I don't want to feel that again. 

23. Rejection comes in many forms. It's all painful. 

24. America's people and systems are even more lost than I realized. 

25. It is ok to excel, even past those you know. You are deserving of nice things when you've busted your ass for years...every single day... to get them. You are worthy of letting go of the label 'starving artist' and it doesn't mean you are selling out. Life is too dope to be struggling all the time. 

26. Your network will and SHOULD change as you rise. Gaining new folks doesn't equate to discarding old folks. However, you will notice that where you spend more of your time, who you talk to, who you build with, and who you naturally gravitate towards will absolutely change. 

27. You want a brand to come after you, give them a reason. Getting Zipcar Ambassadorship over Snapchat and Twitter was one of the quickest and dopest manifestations of 2016 to me. 

28. This year was the most adulting I've done in a year in my life thus far....like, fuck!

29. Raised my credit score 130 points in 8 months. Tiffany 'The Budgetnista' Aliche is the truth.

30. Moving was therapy for me. Painting and creating my own space from scratch was even more therapy for me. I fucking LOVE where I live. I'm finally in not just a loft, but a neighborhood that is indicative of my growth as Evita. 

31. Paypal business loans are the business. 

32. This year I got more into crystal healing. I'm still a newbie, but I will say the yoni egg has been the biggest learning curve, and has opened my emotions up in the rawest form I've had in awhile. Don't 'play' with crystals. If you don't respect them, don't touch them. 

33. Soak Alkaline braiding hair in apple cidar vinegar overnight before getting your hair braided. 

34. People show up for what is important to them, not you. 

35. I am a culture creator. 

36. Language is integral in communication, particularly of emotions. If you are seemingly being misunderstood, take a beat and ask the person 'what are you hearing?'

 

 

MOMENTS:

1. Meeting Adrian's family for the first time on Mother's Day, and immediately falling more in love with him, and them. 

2. Ringing in 2016 on Copacabana beach in Rio. 

3. Nomadness' day at Melisha School in Zanzibar volunteering. 

4. Being on the cover of Griot's Republic. 

5. Starting the year on Oxygen Channel. 

6. Getting contacted by Facebook HQ to be a feature during Women's History Month, for their Facebook Stories with 7 women for 'The Atlas of Beauty'. One of only seven women IN THE WORLD to be featured, interviewed, and shot by renowned photographer Mihaela Noroc. Her project is amazing. Check it out here

7. Getting my Ancestry DNA results to find out someone lied to my mother. LMAO!In all seriousness, it was enlightening. I hit to some capacity everywhere except Central and South America. Tops were Benin/Togo and Ireland. 

8. Culture Coop Dinner to reveal the new Humanly book on Generation Y. Sitting with Facebook, Buzzfeed, Zagat, and Google. 

10. Shooting the dopest video that the greater world will probably never see, for a project with GoPro. The CEO knows me and Nomadness, and it's forged the great beginning to a relationship. 

11. Enovia. Girl, our conversations are everything. However, the first time we got on the phone with the NYC Airbnb team, and I listened to us flow like water and close the business deal....yes. Just yes. 

12. All the PIX11 features and becoming thaZeir travel expert (something that was on last year's goals) in 2017. Love that team. Veronica, Suki I love you both!

13. Prince Passing. 

14. Mohammad Ali passing. 

15. Not just receiving the Brother Durning Rising Star Award, but also having it created for you because the other awards didn't qualify, by my Alma Mater, Iona College. 

16. Getting gifted my 1st ticket to a Beyonce concert ever by Jasmine, and getting MY ENTIRE LIFE in that floor seat. Lawd! She's the best overall performer of my generation, in my opinion. 

17. Attending Black Girls Rock with my girls and my sister. 

18. Getting interviewed and shot for a Japanese Magazine

19. Speaking on a panel for Black Girls Rock's Summer Camp!

 

20. Jessie Williams' speech at the BET Awards

21.  Opening up my new home for 'A Traveler's Holiday' bridging friends and Tribe members who didn't want to celebrate alone for the holidays.

22. Being honored on one of six lists that I actually care about. 2016's #87 of The Root 100 most influential African-Americans of the year. Let's go!

23. Art For Life everything....again. Love you Danny!

24. Attending the Rush Arts Luncheon with Kali

25. My entire housewarming. The people who flew in, drove in, shared, cried, networked, and shared amazing stories of how we came into one another's lives. 

26. My 32nd birthday Bowl Off......that may be the move for 33. But, same teams. Same teams. Mom surprising me there was dope. 

27. Repping for Bernie Sanders hard

28. Being alone in the voting both, and pressing the button for Jill Stein

29. Explaining and reexplaining to social media how a vote for Jill Stein in a guaranteed blue state made no overall difference because of the electoral college. Yet, how it would help a 3rd party get to the needed 5% of the vote to at least be given a chance to join the debate and get funding. Subsequently realizing that people, in some cases very influential people, simply didn't understand how the process worked. That scared me. 

30. Getting super drunk in the middle of the day at Alexis' welcome back brunch in the meatpacking district, and making out on the sidewalk with Genesis. 

31. TED Office visit to build with the genius mind that is Reggie Black, and surprising the brilliant mind that is Liz Jackson.

32. My breakup. 

33. Nomadness videos going legit viral this year. 

34. All the Facebook Lives at Essence Magazine and The Root

35. Two breakdowns I had with Brittney and Vanessa at the Tribe BBQ about showing up to another event single, that I would have put money on that my boyfriend would have been at with me. I think my breakup earlier that month hit the hardest at these events. 

36. Moving, and dealing with a breakup through the therapy of creativity in creating my space from scratch. 

 

37. Legit dropping online classes. I am so proud of NMDNBlackBox and FaceYourBrand.com

38. Getting off this kick that I had to be in a relationship to go to Santorini, Greece and finally just going by myself. It's a dream trip I had since college. The best move I could have made. 

39. Shooting for TruTV! Coming in January

40. Shooting for Hyatt/Skift

41. Homemade Dinner our nights in Megyer, Hungary

42. Dad surprising Sarafina and I walking into #NMDN ALTERnative Travel Conference like a boss. One of the dopest moments ever!!!

43. Final trip speech in Bocas Del Toro, Panama ....back where we had our first trip over five years ago...to an amazing trip group for Nomadness. 

44. Issa Rae looking as amazing as ever at her Urbanworld premiere of Insecure, and shouting Nomadness out during the Q&A. I cannot begin to explain how proud I am of this woman and her work. Thank you so much!

45. Asking a family member to come to therapy with me in the New Year. 

46. Taking mental health in my community so seriously that I'm willing to turn myself into the billboard for it. It's time to break the stigma, and the taboo conversations. First shirt coming soon. Here's a peek:

 

47. I don't believe too tough in the idea of 'once in a lifetime' things. I have too many dreams come true and too many manifestations happen to know that many things people regard as once in a lifetime, are only because they put that barrier up in their own mind. However, if I had to shave my year down...and even my life down, I believe thus far this is the only qualifying factor of potentially once in my lifetime. It seemed like such a far fetched dream to make it to the White House under the Obama Administration. Last year or second term. It's a wrap. Then, three months before it was to be all over, the call out for South By South Lawn applications came out. Worldwide call for innovators, leaders, thought provokers, change agents to come INTO the White House to be not just among one another in energy, but the President of the United States, Barack Obama. Listen....This photo says it all, even though I have a million. 

Universe can I thank you enough!!! I'm in the muthafucking White House!!!!!! #reallifevie

Universe can I thank you enough!!! I'm in the muthafucking White House!!!!!! #reallifevie

Over 20000 applied. 2000 were accepted. Brittney worked her social media magic as my 'campaign manager', Tribe flooded the applications, and I set my intentions then tried to forget about it. Listen.....

When you get an email from the White House.......shit. When you get a 'Please RSVP' email from the White House...........SHIT! That entire day was what 'once in a lifetime' SHOULD feel like. Dopest part being I was able to share it with other friends and entrepreneurs I respect the hell out of who also were invited to come. Listen.....words can't explain. 

By biggest takeaway from attending South by South Lawn is this, EVERYTHING is tangible. Touching the White House (and Trump being elected, if I'm being all the way real) let me know I could be the President of the United States. Feel me. Hear me, on this. I've touched these walls. I've walked and twerked on this grass. I've cried here. I've spoken to everyday people doing otherworldly shit on this lawn. I AM ONE OF THESE PEOPLE. It's tangible. I've decided to not post the normal 'Goals for 2017' section to this blog this year, because they are becoming ever more precious and personal to me. I'm keeping my goals close. But one I will share, is that I have it on my life list to be appointed a UN Goodwill Ambassador. I've wanted it for years, and I know my greater work with Nomadness is leading me there. My let's go, biggest lesson learned, year in a nutshell, image of 2016 is:

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Cape Town, South Africa w/ Mike Bigz

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Cape Town, South Africa w/ Mike Bigz

South Africa has welcomed many within the Nomadness Tribe who return home with glowing impressions and life long memories of the people and the land. World traveler Mike Bigz, recently returned from his latest stay in Cape Town and his a lot to share. Here's a look into how he spent his 1st couple days in town.

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I've been meaning to publish this since getting back from my trip so apologies for the delay.

Cape Town was amazing! Since I'd been before I had a pretty good idea to some of the things I wanted to tick off and BOY did I tick them off!

DAY 1:  LANDING IN CAPE TOWN!!

I'd already pre-booked a ride from the Airport but since Uber is popping in Cape Town, I'd suggest just arriving at the Airport and scheduling an Uber when you land (The Airport has free Wi-Fi so you're good) I'd also suggest picking up a local sim card in the Airport. I used Vodacom which was cheap and like 100 Rands for 1GB of data, super easy!

DAY 2: GREEN POINT

My initial plan was to climb Table Mountain on day 2 but that quickly changed, decided that it was too much too soon and we wanted to explore the local area. The first 7 or so days I was staying in Green Point, a cool little area which the weekends there's a little music and dancing thing going on along the promenade during the day, since it was a nice day we ended up hanging out in the local area for most of the afternoon before grabbing some food at Primi Piatti! (MAN! the food was good)

If you like Salsa then I'd suggest finding out when they have this on. I swear if I could salsa I'd have jumped in and KILLED IT! But alas, I can't salsa.. Well, I can pretend but not really really... 

Recommendation: On your first or second day I'd suggest to buy a RED BUS ticket (You know those City sightseeing bus pass things). You can grab a 1 day or 2 day pass, it'll help you get your bearings of the city and plan the next few days in Cape. It's WORTH it! Wish I'd have done it sooner in my trip.

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Two days in and it's already looking like a great time. Hop after to Mikes full blog post to get the whole experience plus his itinerary break down so you can follow up on anything parts of his trip you want to try out.

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Travel Smarter - Cost Of Living: Medellin vs New York

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Travel Smarter - Cost Of Living: Medellin vs New York

There's definitely a science to travel. It's something that's required but if you want to get the best out of your experiences a little advance planning can make a lot of difference. A luxury weekend in a city like New York can be a wonderful time but it will cost you. This makes us wonder where you could travel to get similar luxury at a more affordable cost. One such destination is Medellin Colombia. Nomadness' own Jubril dives right into that very topic with a direct NYC vs Medellin comparative blog that is everything you could ask for to fully plan for a great Colombian experience. 

Take a look below at his break down of living options in Medellin for a good idea of how your U.S money can work for internationally.

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Accommodations:

My 6 month leased penthouse apartment in the exclusive neighborhood of San Lucas, Medellin is 5,000 square feet, has 5 bedrooms, 6 bathrooms, a maids bedroom and bathroom, open floor plan, sauna, a massive rooftop, and it’s all furnished.

You know how much I pay for all of that? $3,400USD per month. Then on top of that my power and internet bill is about $400 per month. So that’s about a total of $3,800 a month.

 

If you were in New York, you would be looking at $30,000 a month just for the rent alone!

And I haven’t even gotten to the best part… A full-time maid who works Mon-Sat 9am-5pm, who cooks and cleans, and looks after all of us so well. I pay her about $300 a month which is much more than the minimum wage here for service workers.

In New York, for a maid that cooks and cleans 6 days a week, you’ll look at paying around $3,000 per month… Not $300.

You can easily find a modern, luxury apartment in Medellin for the weekend by using Airbnb (check out this post for more info on Airbnb) and it would cost you from $60 a night in the best neighborhood.

For something similar in New York, you can expect to pay upwards of $400 per night.

If you would rather stay in a hotel for the weekend, Medellin has quite a few to choose from and you’ll be looking at spending $40- $100 for mid range, and then $100-$200 for luxury.

You can easily get a luxury hotel for under $100 using Hotwire. Hotels don’t like to advertise their prices that low, so Hotwire hides their identity until your booking is complete. (Check out our post on Hotwire here).

You can use E-Bates with Hotwire as well to make your booking even cheaper. With Hotwire and E-Bates, you can see your accommodation prices cut in half.

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See Jubril's full post for his thorough fiscal run down of activities, transportation, dining and more in Medellin. You won't believe just how much your dollar can get you. 

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HUFFINGTON POST SPOTLIGHTS THE NOMADNESS #DUBAIBLACKOUT 2016

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HUFFINGTON POST SPOTLIGHTS THE NOMADNESS #DUBAIBLACKOUT 2016

When Nomadness does something it is always done big. And if it was done before then it'll be done bigger. When another quality glitch fare hit the Internets earlier this year to the UAE, Nomadness swooped in to again cop hundreds of flights. In the spirit of last years #UAETakeOver the Tribe booked first and asked questions later. Our Cheerleader supreme Kenna Williams would take the lead to organize a massive trip to Dubai for Halloween 2016. Fresh off that experience Huffington Post gives you an inside at what went down in the Middle East.

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Ms. Williams’s first visit to Dubai was in 2014 on her way back from South Africa. She was there with a small group of friends but decided to go back again. For the past three years, Ms. Williams has been coordinating this trip. In 2014, Kenna was in Dubai with approximately 30 friends. In 2015 she returned with 80 of her friends and this year she had a beautiful sea of over 250 black queens and kings exploring Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

What made this event such a success was there were all age ranges attending from 20s-80s, individuals in all professions including educators, engineers, doctors, nurses plus student and various types of entrepreneurs, there were several people receiving their passport stamp for the first time and some conquered their fear of flying one of the ten longest flights in the world!

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Hop over to Huff Post for the full feature including a video interview with Pusha Kee, Kenna Williams herself. ~Click Here~ 

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In-Flight Tales From Our Flying Sisters of Medicine

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In-Flight Tales From Our Flying Sisters of Medicine

In-Flight Tales From Our Flying Sisters of Medicine

We're sure that those within the Urban Travel space have by now heard of Dr. Tamika Cross. Her recent experience on board a Delta flight where her professional standing as a physician was questioned has gone mainstream and sparked some heated reactions regarding discrimination and stereotyping. If this is new to you can see her account of the ordeal here. On a positive side the conversation has given birth to #WhataDoctorLooksLike as a space for Doctors of all shades to shine and show the diversity of their profession. Tribe member Nadeen White-Underwood gathered a number of our own flying physicians to share their own tales from the not always so friendly skies. Here's is a preview of one of the Doctor's featured in this great article, Dr Dafina Good. 

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Black female doctors make up only 2% of the physician work force but it is a powerful one. Thanks to Dr. LS Emory the hashtag #WhataDoctorLooksLike was born. It not only showed the remarkable diversity of black female doctors but also called on Delta to address the discrimination exhibited on this flight. They have responded although not to the satisfaction of most. I decided to call on black female doctors in my Facebook travel group to share their in-flight experiences and offer sound travel advice. Get ready to be amazed and inspired because I certainly was! These women are experts in every field of medicine and even with busy careers still find time to travel the world! I posed these 5 questions to them:

1) Where you are from/current location?

2) What type of Medicine do you practice?

3) Name your top 3 travel destinations.

4) Provide travel tips for a long flight.

5) Have you provided medical assistance on a flight and if so what happened?

Dr. Dafina Good

 

1) Detroit, Michigan. Current Location: Washington DC

2) Pediatric Emergency Medicine

3) Cape Town, South Africa, Seychelles, Cartagena, Colombia

4) Wear compression socks on long flights, drink lots of water and ALWAYS have Travel Medical Insurance with Medical Evacuation!

5) In-Flight emergencies can be nerve wrecking as it can be simple stuff or death. I once had someone have an allergic reaction to shrimp en route to USA from Seoul, Korea. Luckily, I’m a medical ninja when I travel! Benadryl in my fanny pack gave them a nice sleep! I always say I’m like an Air Marshall in-flight…Low key, Least expected yet ready when shit hits the fans! My Advice: Be nice to everyone! You never know who may save your Life…

Please take a moment and visit Nadeen's site The Sophisticated Life for the complete article featuring some more amazing traveling Doctors showing you #WhataDoctorLooksLike!

 

 

  

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Through The Lens - Welcome To Rome

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Through The Lens - Welcome To Rome

After the exciting activities of my first day in Rome, you could imagine how tired I was the next morning. On top of that, I only had a couple hours until meeting my tour group outside of Vatican City. A tip about staying in spaces when sharing the same bathroom: Take your showers at night to avoid the crowd! After hovering outside the bathroom for almost an hour and finally getting dressed, my window of time to get to my meeting point had significantly diminished. My only choice was to order an car - never the frugal option

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Dealing With Crisis Abroad

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Dealing With Crisis Abroad

We enjoy the foreign foods, exotic locales and rich cultures when traveling the world. Yet there are times when that experience is interrupted be the horrors of our world. Nomadness Tribe member CJ shares her recent dealings with crisis while in the midst of international travel. Take a look below at her thoughts then visit her site for more. 

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As soon as I had purchased my Eurotrip flight in May, I had been lusting over June 17 to come so I could finally see some cities I had been dreaming about.  It was officially the furthest I had ever been from home and also the longest time I had been away from the States.  I was extremely excited, but a part of me was anxious about an emergency happening while I was gone that I would have no control over.  Unfortunately, it took place a couple of times, directly and indirectly.

I am going to discuss three situations that made my chest hurt and my stomach drop.  They put a sour taste in my trip for a few days and while I am normally bold and confident, I felt helpless. I am going to be transparent with what I could have done within my locus of control and what (if anything) I would do differently the next time it occurred. 

I felt sick to my stomach to see Dallas in a state of panic.  It is never comforting to see cities "fall" for a brief amount of time (natural disaster, shootings, etc) but when it's where you sleep, it touches your soul in a different way.  I was worried about some of my friends that were in that very vicinity at the time of the first shot.  I got chills because if I had been back home, I could have been there myself.  I also did something stupid (i.e. reading internet comments of ignorant folks) while reading news stories and just kept to myself for two days. 

I did not know how to process what was going on. 

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Please check out the full blog post as CJ shares her emotional process in dealing with various crisis' overseas.

 

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Your Guide To a 24 Hour Panama City Layover

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Your Guide To a 24 Hour Panama City Layover

Panama City is the hub of the Americas and, because of this, I often get messages from people who have long layovers in Panama City and have no idea how to kill time between their flights. Most people know that Panama has a canal...and that's about it. However, if you immerse yourself in the city for even just one day, I guarantee that you'll fall in love.

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Black Exchange Student Shines in Korea

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Black Exchange Student Shines in Korea

Black Exchange Student Shines in Korea

As people travel the planet there are assumptions, people see you and often without ill intent they have ideas of what to expect from you. In this amazing clip a young Black exchange student is competing on a Korean talent show. Black people and singing isn't a new thing but when this young man sings in Korea's native language he shocks everyone within the sound of his voice. 

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Nomadness Prepares to Break Down All Travel Barriers with New Black Box

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Nomadness Prepares to Break Down All Travel Barriers with New Black Box

A Letter from the Creator of Nomadness:
 

'When I sat down and thought about the name for our travel course, nothing was sticking at first. I wanted something clearly travel oriented, clever, but not obvious. I was on the phone with Brittney (Social Media Maven) looking through terms, and I yelled out 'Black Box..that's it! It's where all the important information about a flight is housed. All the communication. It's where everyone, even the experts turn to for travel information.' It literally, was perfect.

It was exactly what I wanted to create. A course that breaks down the psychological, financial, and physical barriers that people have to travel. Because the truth is, everyone CAN do this! Not just me, not just Tribe. You, with your freelancing gig, or 9-5, or pipe dream and lonely bank account...your travel won't look the same, but it's still something that can be attained.

NMDNBLACKBOX.COM is a 6 month course that breaks down all the barriers of entry that you have into the world of travel. Period. It's for everyone...from the well traveled, to those who have never stepped foot on a plane. Period.
From finding your travel style, to getting over the fear of flying (a personal issue I had many panic attacks over...ironically), to traveling with food allergies, and what to sign up for so you are taken care of in case you have an emergency abroad. We are covering it all. Weekly, in 15 minute or less classes. ' - Keep Traveling, Evita

Check the video out, and sign up for more information at http://nmdnblackbox.com dropping soon. ‪#blackbox‬ ‪#whatsnext‬

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Huffington Post Black Voices - Video Feature On Nomadness Travel Tribe

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Huffington Post Black Voices - Video Feature On Nomadness Travel Tribe

Huffington Post's Black Voices decided to dive into what Nomadness is really all about. As the leader of the Urban Travel Movement, Nomadness creator Evita Robinson joined a collection of tribe members to share just what makes Nomadness the international force that it is.  

Here's a short excerpt from Huffington Post's latest on Nomadness. 

The black travel and tourism industry is growing. In 2013, it reached $40 billion and it’s on track to continue.

Tribe member Tiffany Aliche also spoke to HuffPost about the power of being able to connect black people with these opportunities.

“People of color generally do not travel, or they weren’t, and here was this space where not only did you have people who like travel, but they could show you how to do it if you were interested in it,” she said.

Check out the full article now on Huffington Post!!!

 

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Welcome To Shenzhen

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Welcome To Shenzhen

One of our Nomadness Tribe members, Yvette Santos Cuenco has recently touched down in China for a new career opportunity. As she begins her latest international counselor role she's sharing the various elements of her ongoing acclimation to her new home. Here's the first of many entries as she arrives in Shenzhen.

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Welcome To Shenzhen

I arrived in Shenzhen three days ago and so far, so good.  The settling in process takes time and plenty of energy.  In the next few posts I will be sharing my Shenzhen experiences and dropping a few pro tips along the way!

THE GREETING

Like with every international school orientation, it is information OVERLOAD and a major hit to the senses - new sights, sounds, smells, language, culture, etc.  I am sure my fellow newbies would agree that the school nailed their role in making this transition as worry-free as possible.

Here is what stood out to me:

  1. Much like my school in Uzbekistan - greeted at the hotel by admin.
  2. Welcome bags full of creature comforts - snacks, bread, peanut butter, wine, beer, soda, etc.
  3. Cellphone w/ sim card. I took the sim out and popped it into my unlocked Android phone.
  4. Phone numbers of all admin and administrative assistants who are reachable at any time.
  5. Most importantly for me - It's a community that HUGS. There's truly nothing like coming off a plane after dealing with the dog, delayed bag, etc. and being greeted with warmth and friendly faces.

THE HOUSEHUNTING

After that first night, we toured the Elementary campus and were taken to different returning teachers' apartments to truly get a feel for the potential of spaces we'd call home.  Living in Tashkent and Bangkok, prepared me well for the lack of uniformity in the apartments I would see.  For some background - modern Shenzhen is really only 30 years old. It is a young city compared to Beijing and Shanghai.  Despite it's "new-ness", thanks to oil and tech - it is incredibly WEALTHY.  I did not expect to see so many BMWs, Teslas, Mercedes Benzes, etc. and I've only explored one district - Shekou.

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If your curious how Yvette's new life in China is going, hop over to the full post on her site The Roaming Filipina.  

 

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New Zealand Culture Shock

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New Zealand Culture Shock

Dear Kiwis,

I’d like to thank you! But, in order for you to understand my gratitude, I first need to give you some context. I grew up in the US, in a home where we never locked our door.  Some, including myself, thought this was odd, but my parents didn’t think it posed any real threat so we learned to accept it.  Although my family lived in a rural area, we were certainly the exception to the American rule at the time. My youth was unfortunately shaped by after-school TV specials, high-profile child abductions, high school shootings, and America’s Most Wanted – which combined would make my parents and I think that danger was lurking around every corner.  At some point, I’m not sure when, trust stopped being freely given. If and when it was given, it was given from a safe distance.

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THE NOMADNESS PROJECT | THAILAND - PART 2 [SEASON FINALE]

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THE NOMADNESS PROJECT | THAILAND - PART 2 [SEASON FINALE]

In our final episode of the season, the intersection of personal and business become very real for Evita. Leaving Southern Thailand, the whole crew heads up north to Chiang Mai, a place Evita lived five years prior. She hasn't been back since and the reunion with her Thai Mom and Dad proves to be very emotional. The Tribe is by her side, as they explore the suburban areas that truly represent Thailand. They journey up the unending steps to Doi Suthep Temple, and culminate with tens of thousands of people to finally celebrate the enchanting Loy Krathong Lantern Festival.

Created by Evita Robinson. Check out both seasons at youtube.com/issarae

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