The World is quite literally my new home as of October 2019. This is not some bold and pretentious statement, I actually joined a ship, and her name is The World. I joined in Shanghai, China, and since then have traveled to five countries and 14 cities over the course of one month. It’s a little bit funny, but looking back on the slogan I wrote two years ago — “making the world my home” — I wonder if I somehow invoked destiny to bring me to this ship.
Making The World my Home
Nowadays, you’ll find me sitting in the Editor’s office, writing, designing, printing, and sometimes re-printing because of a mistake I’ve made. In my free time, I go and explore the ports and all the attractions and culinary options they have to offer. After a month of the same routine, I found myself thinking about The Constant Foreigner, and how I had abandoned it completely. I felt upset. I felt like I let myself down. I had big plans for TCF. I envisioned this little corner of the world wide web to be my creative outlet, as well as a resource for people who might be interested in the same things I am: travel, culture, food, and a never-ending exploration of this fascinating planet.
So here is my attempt to try and get back to writing for The Constant Foreigner, and to keep you, my dear audience, in the loop of my latest adventures.
Although I lived in Thailand for six years in my childhood (from 2000 to 2006), and my family and I were able to travel to several Southeast Asian countries, I realize I had only scratched the surface. This time around I have visited many new places I never knew existed. Also, things have drastically changed since 2006. I was impressed by Shanghai’s modern infrastructure, enormous shopping plazas, and electric scooters that are deadly silent (meaning you can’t hear them coming and they zoom past at dangerous speeds).
Hong Kong is all over the news, what with its protests and turbulent events, but when I was there, I felt completely safe. The city is also a modern monstruosity, full of high-end shops and enough neon signs to light up the entire Las Vegas Boulevard. Philippines with its spectacular, pristine beaches and busy bustling city of Manila. The food I’ve had in each place has been absolutely amazing, from soft shell crabs to grilled lobster and fancy cocktails. I have no doubt I will gain weight during my adventures, and it will be completely worth it!
But the country I found most intriguing was Taiwan, which has an interesting mix of Chinese and Japanese influence. It was my first time on this tiny island nation, visiting Keelung and Kaohsiung, both unique in their own ways. Keelung, with its temples and steep hills. Kaohsiung, with the Dragon & Tiger Pagodas and exotic night markets. I would absolutely return to this island to explore all it has to offer.
Singapore is the latest port of call. Four days in this green city is not enough to get to understand this international cosmopolitan city. The radio in the taxi is always in English, with a bit of Singlish mixed in. Everyone speaks English here! I’m impressed. The infrastructure here is like nothing I’ve ever seen, and the city’s cleanliness and eco-friendliness definitely holds up to its reputation. Although I wasn’t able to see as much as I wanted, it was a sufficient amount of time to appreciate this city’s modern vibe.
Land of smiles, here I come
In a couple of days I’ll be spending a little over a week in one of my favorite countries: Thailand! I can’t wait to be back “home!” I consider Thailand one of my multiple homes, especially after having lived there for six years. Pad See Iew and Khao Nieaw Mamuang are on the menu, and daily foot massages are a must. Other than that, all I really want to do is reminisce on my childhood years, have an ice cream at Swensen’s and walk through Royal Garden Mall.
I will try and keep this page up to date, but I have no concrete plans as to how often this will happen. For the moment, I just want to enjoy life and not stress out about having to write for The Constant Foreigner. So this next chapter of TCF begins with this little article, and I truly hope there will be more to come later on!
Peace and much, much love from your friend, Angie.