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Travel, Trip Planning

My Itinerary for 5 months in Southeast Asia.


It’s almost time to leave the USA for my first ever trip abroad!

Zoom’s route

It’s been a whirlwind of prep work, but the moment is finally here! Getting rid of all my stuff, deciding what I wanted to live on for the next 6 months, moving out of my apartment – it’s all lead to this, the biggest adventure of my life!

We interrupt this blog for a commercial break!

Today we’d like to thank our supporters! Zoom’s friends and family from Ohio and Chicago. Burner friends and family networks. Blog subscribers and fellow travel enthusiasts! I’m so excited to have you along!

Note that this itinerary is just a flexible, inexperienced shot at a plan and is subject to change!

Of course I’ll keep you updated along the way! Click the links for more details on that particular adventure.

Here we go!


  • Arrive Bangkok, Thailand April 23rd, sometime around midnight
  • Tuk Tuk my way to my hostel:
    • New Road Guest House

Bangkok – Sunday 

Bangkok – Monday / Tuesday

  • Visit the floating markets
  • The The Grand Palace
  • Soi Cowboy – night
  • Lumpinee Boxing Stadium

Chiang Mai – Arrive Wednesday April 27th – Depart May 2ndish

  • The erotic garden
  • The Night Bazaar
  • Bathe Baby Elephants, NO RIDING
  • Wat Phra Singh
  • Traditional Khantoke Dinner and Show
  • Misc sightseeing and shenanigans
  • Tattoo 

Chiang Rai

  • The White Castle (not food)

Chiang Saen – May 5th ish – June 5th ish

  • Teach english, 4 weeks

Laos – Arrive June 8thish-12th  


Vietnam – June 12th ish – July 20th ish



  • Two nights

Hoi An June 20-July 20

  • Volunteer at cat cafe
  • Visit tailor for a dress

Phan Thiet

Ho Chi Minh


Cambodia – August 5th ish – August 20thish

Phnom Penh


Koh Ta Kiev

  • Beautiful island


Siem Reap


Bangkok, Thailand August 24- 26th

  • Prepping for the trip home

San Francisco, California August 27th

  • Hostel / Stay with friends / Couchsurf
  • Get supplies for Burning Man

Black rock city, Nevada – August 29th – September 5th

  • Burning Man!
    • The man gets what’s coming to him!

Reno, Nevada – September 5th

  • One good ol’ night at The Sands

Chicago, Illinois – September 6th – September 12th

  • Stay with the VBs and chill
  • Sushi Para M
  • King Spa
  • Slideshow party

Dayton, Ohio – September 12th

  • Back to real life? Uhh…

I’m so excited to get going and to have you along with me! If there’s a better way to present this info that would make it easier to digest, I’m all ears! 
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xoxo <3

Packing, Travel, Trip Planning

What’s in my 24 hour bug out bag?

I was missing your faces so I thought this might be a good excuse to get some video action going! I mean, at least for one of us.

What’s a bug out bag you ask?

From the great WIKIPEDIA: A bug-out bag[1][2] is a portable kit that normally contains the items one would require to survive for seventy-two hours[3][4] when evacuating from a disaster, however some kits are designed to last longer periods of time than just 72 hours. The focus is on evacuation, rather than long-term survival, distinguishing the bug-out bag from asurvival kit, a boating or aviation emergency kit, or a fixed-site disaster supplies kit. The kits are also popular in the survivalism and prepper subcultures.[5]

Hit the jump to see what I always have with me while traveling!

In what circumstances would you put together a bug out bag?

Zombies? Giant Meteor? A giant sporting event in your city? What would be in it?

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xoxo <3

Packing, Travel, Trip Planning

Everything I own for the next 6 months.

I'm going to be spending the next 6 months traveling throughout Asia. Here's my packing list - and everything I own for the next 6 months.

If you’ve ever been to an amusement park/state fair/festival/special type of rock concert, and ridden a roller coaster, do this exercise with me.

Imagine the craziest, twistiest, almost-going-to-puke-iest coaster you’ve ever ridden. For me, it was the rockin’ roller coaster at Disney in Florida. The swift curves, the slow and rumbling crescendo of the hill [and in my stomach], releasing and you’re weightless for a moment. Your stomach floats and it kind of feels cool but also weird, and you wonder if feeling your heart beat in your thumb is normal. Whew! That was my entire weekend this weekend. It’s been thrilling, terrifying, and has had plenty of twists and turns.

Friday night was a “New Beginnings Party” with so many of my friends – it was wonderful. I am the luckiest gal – thank you to everyone who came out! It was also a little sad because I won’t see many of them for a long time…twist on a roller coaster. My folks arrived Saturday to take a load of my stuff back to Ohio to storage.We got everything loaded, and my apartment now feels slightly barren to me. Down the hill we go.

Special thanks to my Mom, Dad, Mia, Tom, Aunt Lyla and Uncle Allen for their support in the move! <3

Sunday brought an impromptu adventure to Medieval Times Dinner Tournament out in the burbs – it was SO FUN! We cheered for our knight – the black and white knight – like lunatics. “WHOOOOOO!!!!!” Despite his loss, we had a wonderful time!


Monday brought some sobriety to the party. My dad and I packed my final belongings into the truck, and tucked Yahtzee into her carrier. We had a quiet breakfast at McDonalds and then they dropped me off for some errands. Mom and I got out of the car and hugged – she cried. I stayed strong to demonstrate my resolve to come home safe and sound. Assuring her that I’d email as much as I could, she put Yahtzee on her lap and they drove off – my colorful bike, Pon Pon, tied to the back.

That was definitely the hardest moment so far – I’m going to miss that bike so much. Just teasing! Mom, I’ll see you soon – I love you! I’m having a swirl of emotions – excitement and fear, the desire for adventure and the desire to be near home struggling against each other to find a balance. 

On a lighter note, only two days until I leave for San Francisco! I accomplished a lot this weekend, thanks to tons of help from my support circle. We got everything loaded into the truck, and I’m all packed.

When I tell people I go to Burning Man, they always ask “What do you, like, even bring to that?” I’m getting the same questions about my trip to Asia, so without further ado…

Here it is! The lists.

Yahtzee not included, she’s just helping.

All the things (in, um, no particular order):

  • 4 tubes of Burt’s Bees Chapstick
  • Passport and extra photos for visas
  • Two guidebooks which I’m emotionally prepared to rip pages out of if they are too heavy
  • Debit / Card cards
  • iPhone
  • iPad
  • Mac
  • Apple product chargers
  • Power converter – outlets are different abroad
  • USB Battery Pack
  • Two travel locks
  • Sleeping mask
  • Neck Pillow
  • 14 pairs of underwear
  • 2 pairs of short
  • 10 pairs of socks
  • 1 pair of tennis shoes
  • 2 pairs of flip flops
  • Bitchin’ Bikini
  • 2 wonderful bras from bras galore in Chicago. My lady friends, check this place out.
  • 1 sports bra
  • Glasses
  • Contacts and solution
  • Diva cup
  • Washcloth
  • Towl
  • 4 t shirts
  • 4 tank tops
  • 1 sleeveless dress shirt
  • 1 dress
  • 2 pairs biking shorts
  • 1 scarf (for covering shoulders and protecting dreads)
  • 1 pair of leggings
  • 2 pairs of Thigh Saving Bandalettes – my thighs’ life savers!! Goodbye Chafe, won’t miss you.
  • My dread crochet hook
  • Regular crochet hook and yarn
  • Deodorant
  • Rubber Cement
  • All the medications
  • Antibiotic ointment
  • Hair ties
  • Sunglasses
  • Earplugs
  • 90% deet bug spray of poisonous death
  • Flash drive
  • Sunscreen
  • Headlamp and batteries
  • Mini toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Tiny scissors
  • Tarot cards
  • Headphones
  • The hilarious miniature game “Iota”
  • Notebook
  • Pen
  • Vaccination Record
  • Laundry bag
  • Hand Fan in the traditional Asian Style

Burning Man

Burning Man requires a few unique items.


Every year when I leave the playa, I ask myself “What will you do differently next year?” And every year, it’s “bring more warm things” – so we’re heavy on the layers this year!

  • Tent
  • Air mattress and pump
  • Camel back
  • Warm pants
  • Hat and scarf
  • Coat
  • ISIS Wings (not affiliated with the terrorist organization)
  • Sleeping Bag
  • Wool socks
  • Hand warmers
  • 10 gallons of water
  • Tent stakes
  • Foodstuffs
  • Bowl and silverwear
  • Baby wipes
  • Lotion
  • Personal lighting
  • Ziplocks and trashbags
  • Toilet Paper
  • Cup (this will be it’s third time to the playa!)
  • War Paint
  • Goggles
  • Gifts
  • Toilet Paper
  • Clown Nose
  •  Pee jug and funnel. Sexy.
All packed up and ready to go! I’m bringing an empty one to fill with food and water.


My pack will come with me to Asia. My two bags will stay with one of my camp friends who is kind enough to store it for me so I can pick it up when I get back and head to the burn. I’ve checked the list once, twice and a third time. I’m pretty sure I have everything…


You’d tell me if I was forgetting anything, right?

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I'm going to be spending the next 6 months traveling throughout Asia. Here's my packing list - and everything I own for the next 6 months.
Packing, Travel, Trip Planning

Getting rid of [almost] everything I own.

This is proving to be a lot harder than I thought. I have SO. MUCH. STUFF.

You don’t realize it until you go to get rid of it. Then, every bag of miscellaneous buttons, every spool of thread, every extra envelope and tumbler stands out. Why do I have so many spools of white thread? Was I planning to make my own mosquito net?!

I put together a list of questions to ask myself when confronting something that’s headed to the misfit toys island.


When we’re talking about spools of thread, this isn’t so hard. I have 10 of them. I only need one, plus, they are cheap and easy to replace. Down the list and check, check, check. No emotional attachment to thread.

When it comes to clothing, this is a bit harder because certain ‘looks’ aren’t as easily replaceable, or some were gifts, but I’m expecting to come back with new tastes anyway – and probably skinnier from having literally sweat my ass off.

Where I’m really struggling is when it comes to things with a strong emotional attachment. Letters from my mom and friends. Gifts that were given to me. I feel guilty getting rid of this stuff.

Why do I feel guilty or scared to get rid of these items?

Regret, well, fear of regret I think. When my mom dies, I think I’m going to want those letters. When I’m missing my best friend I’m going to find joy in that necklace she bought me.

I’ve managed to come to a compromise- or at least a way of justifying getting rid of things without the guilt. I’m struggling with things that have a personal attachment. I know that the givers of these items would want me to be happy – even if that means selling the items so I can travel longer. My mother even gave me explicit permission to sell anything she’s ever got me. Thanks mom!

I’m going to keep those letters though.

I’m having a yard sale to both make some money and get rid of some of my extra things!

UPDATE: The yard sale went better than I could have hoped! I made almost $500. I worked hard to get the word out by putting ads up on craigslist, flyers around town, yard sale websites, etc. We had a great turnout, thank you to everyone who volunteered to help with the sale!

What type of things do you struggle to get rid of? Did you overcome it? 

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xoxo <3