the mongol rally

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Flight 30: A Brief Return to the PNW

"Vancouver wasn’t exactly how I’d left it, but it was still very much the same city. How could I have done so many things, and seen so many things and this place and its residents seemed entirely unchanged? The same people were at the gym at 4:30PM on the weekdays, doing the same exercises. They must have frozen. Of course I know that life continued here as usual, and I knew I would come home and feel this contrast acutely. To me, from the outside, it looked like nothing of note had happened while I was gone. And what kind of motivation is that to stay put?" Read more...

India: Kindness Shouldn't Cost Anything

 "If Hanoi’s Old Quarter was a wave of culture shock, then Old Delhi was a Japanese tsunami. Total destruction. In its wake, 30-some hours after arrival, Addie and I shuddered in our dark little room battling a violent round of food poisoning. There are few things that will bring two people closer together than being ill and helpless together. If I had any dignity left by that point, it died there." Read more...

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catch up on the rally

Episode 13: The Vauxhall Encore

The roads climbed and then degraded to rough gravel and construction zones. We flew by massive trucks on skinny roads. By the time night fell we were so close to Afghanistan that we could throw a rock and it would land in another country. The road was narrow enough that only one vehicle could fit down it. The road was a straight drop into the river and the other side was a dirt cliff. Civil engineer that I am, I can tell everyone with the highest confidence that those slopes were not engineered. I would not sign off on those slopes. No sir. Trench inspection failed. I could see tension cracks all over the place, just waiting for an opportune moment to break free. Nick said cheerily, “At least it’s a soft landing!”


Episode 12: The Uzbek Engine Fizzle

The key turned. The starter chirped. And chirped and chirped… no bueno. There was no compression, the engine would not turn on. Now the desert looked a lot less friendly. I thought of the spider at the Door to Hell. This looked a lot more like a big deal. In due time our friends, Team French in Normandy, showed up and asked what was up. These people are the best. When we figured there was no fixing the car on the spot, they offered to tow us. But do you think we had a tow rope? Nah. French to the rescue once again: clothesline and bungee cords. Whatever it takes. Leave no Rallier behind.


hi, i'm steph

Welcome to my corner of the interwebs - in a nut shell, everything in this hideout has been gleaned from a year (and counting) of traveling around the world. If you’d like to know more about who I am, head over to the about page. Drop me a line if you’d like to say hi, and enjoy your stay in my virtual wonderland!

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