2018: A (Travel) Year in Review

In 2017, I managed to add a total of seven new countries and autonomous regions to the list of places I've been, bringing me to a total of 27 countries/autonomous regions that I'd visited in my lifetime.  

While I lived the entirety of 2018 in Vanuatu, I still managed to get out and about.

In 2018, I visited a total of seven new countries/autonomous regions, bringing me to a total of 34 countries/autonomous regions that I've visited in my lifetime.

  1. Thailand
  2. Cambodia
  3. Malaysia
  4. Indonesia
  5. Australia
  6. Marshall Islands
  7. Nauru
Those are just the new countries. I traveled to a total of 11+ new cities and villages!

  1. Utanlang Village, Nguna, Vanuatu
  2. Phuket City, Thailand
  3. Phuket Town, Thailand
  4. Patong Beach, Thailand
  5. Bangkok, Thailand
  6. Svay Dangkum Village, Cambodia
  7. Siem Reap, Cambodia
  8. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  9. Canggu, Bali, Indonesia
  10. Sydney, Australia
  11. Majuro, Marshall Islands
  12. Um, every administrative district of the entire country, Nauru

I made dozens of new friends and travel buddies and Peace Corps family, and already had a reunion with over six of them.
  • I met Taylan in Russia and they met me here in Vanuatu in January.
  • I met LaiYuen in Russia and I reunited with her in her hometown of Kuala Lumpur.
  • I met my parents in Thailand after having been away from them for almost a year.
  • I met Ted in Vanuatu (a fellow PCV) and met up with him in Bangkok.
  • I met Calvin in Uzbekistan and I spent my third NYE with him in Nauru
  • I reunited with countless Peace Corps volunteers at their respective sites/islands.

In March, I did a solo trip to Southeast Asia, and later in the year I went on a Monsoon Diaries trip (The Least Visited Countries Tour began on December 27th, 2018) and met tons of new travel friends. I did it all while still serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in Vanuatu.

And I had immeasurable laughs, excitement, frustration and joy through it all. Here are some of my pictures to summarize the year, places I've visited and people I've met. Click on a photo to enlarge.

Me in Kuala Lumpur

Ted and I reunite in Bangkok

Taylan and I go snorkeling with the neighborhood kids.

Mom and I meet up in Phuket.

A floating market in Bangkok.

Riding backseat in a tuktuk in Siem Reap.

Celebrating the 4th of July with my year 8 students in Vanuatu.

Leinase, Gloria and Natasha show off our American apple pie.

Motorbikes and surfboards: Bali in a nutshell.

LaiYuen shows me some Kuala Lumpur nightlife.

LaiYuen also shows me some killer food.

Monkeys are like Malaysia's rats.

Me in Batu Caves, Malaysia.

My neighborhood friend Belina meets me in Vila to check our our American booth at the International Food Festival

Lily and Toyana were some of the handful of PCVs who surprised me on my 30th birthday in Vanuatu, organized by Frances.

During my chief's ordination ceremony, some men dressed in custom dress hit the underground food ovens to shake out the evil spirits. 

My friends and fellow teachers enjoy some mangoes during the chief's ordination.

Leikai, my cat, sits right in front of my video chat with my parents back home.

Jameson, Job and Vina graduate year 8.

I celebrate American Thanksgiving with my friends and host family.

The boys in years 5 dress up in kastom Malekula clothes for a ceremonial dance performance on Children's Day.

My two teacher friends, Caroline and Meriana, get goofy during Children's Day.

Tamalo and Nemo goof off on the beach.

Vina makes a gingerbread house.

Frances helps cook our vegan Christmas dinner.