Posts of the Moment
I know I'm writing this letter almost five years after our passionate time together but here goes...There was no nearby road or highway to fill the air with white noise. The sound of the others had grown distant. I sat there on that rock in my Clark University softball hoodie and I felt alone for the first time. Not alone like panicky loneliness but alone like the world was just for me...
I have been living in Prague for the last 5 months and have built up quite a bucket list. In those 5 months I've only crossed off 24 of 113 experiences!
After having lived in Taiwan for the same amount of time I really was starting to get a deeper understanding of Taiwanese culture and people whereas here in the Czech Republic I feel I have so much more to learn and understand.
I have a lot of work to do! Hopefully this list will get me there.
After living in Taiwan for 15 months, studying Chinese for 150+ hours, and dating a Taiwanese guy, this is what I learned from and about studying Chinese…
1. Tones, tones, tones.
2. Why you can't pronounce that crazy sound
3. The Reality of learning Chinese characters and calligraphy 4. Foot-pedal-cars
5. The Big BoPoMoFo vs. Pinyin Question
6. Motivation when times get tough and
7. My little language rant: Go BIG or Go Home.
Why I Blog
My original blog started in spring of 2012!
I really started blogging when I was living in a tiny township in Taiwan and needed a place to share and vent my first time living abroad! It just naturally progressed into talking with other travelers and reading other blogs.
Since I found it challenging to find out what I wanted to before moving to Taiwan, I wanted to write this blog for people in the situation I was in: unaware, curious and maybe not knowing where to start. I found it was hard to learn about anything but the capital city and major tourist spots. A Lonely Planet guidebook told me not to even stop by in the city I was soon moving to... I try to seek and share places on and off the beaten path for other travelers and also expats in my current location. Get off the guidebooks, get on travel blogs!
Last year's focus was on Taiwan and Asia, because of my slow-traveling, teaching ways. This year, it's Prague and Česká republika! I've shifted the focus to Czech Republic and Europe, though South America is still very much on my mind!
Why "Traveling Vanilla Bean"?
My dad had a million nicknames for me growing up and still does today. Heather Bean-stroganoff. HRich (yes, like JLo). Beano. Reano Beano. I don't need to go on. They generate seemingly from nothing, but Vanilla Bean always stuck. Add an addiction to travel and there you have it!