In order to truly understand a culture, you need to taste their food. A country's cuisine has always been an important part of cultural identity, and The Philippines is no exception.
In this installment of our Food in Four Courses series, we'll share with you three of the most beloved Filipino dishes, a starter, main course and dessert. And to keep things interesting, we'll add on a dish that's definitely not for the faint of heart.
The Jungle Book
Here is the third chapter of a 5-part series chronicling our "Trek Through the Wilderness." This is a story about 3 average friends, all globe drifters with a love for life, who stepped out of their comfort zones and into the wilderness for a 3 and a half day hike through the rainforest of Corcovado, Costa Rica, a trek that took them from the edge of civilization and back.
For an hour we sloshed along through the gummy mud and pouring rain, leaving the capuchin monkeys behind us.
The shower continued unabated, and along the pathway pools of brown water filled up and gradually trickled over into one another,forming muddy streams that rushed down the jungle trails.
We covered our packs with rain guards, sealed tightly and protected, and we moved along with our backs bowed and our heads up, tasting the freshness of the raindrops on our lips. When we got to the first river crossing, the morning rains passed over us and moved on, leaving us soggy and satisfied.
The rivers were always a welcome stop. Emerging from the thickness of the rainforest out into a clearing and being greeted by the familiar sound of flowing freshwater gave us a reason to stop and gain our bearings.
At the first river, as the rainstorm sauntered off, I stepped out onto the bank and quickly plopped down, un-strapping my pack. Yanking my shoes off, I stuck my crinkled toes into the crisp water and pulled out a granola bar to munch on.
Weather can be one of the hardest things to overcome in a new place. Temperatures around the globe vary from place to place. What's cold in one part of the world is considered hot somewhere else.
Coming from a place where the average temperature is 80 degrees Fahrenheit with a chance of an afternoon shower, I was not quite prepared for the searing summer streets of Southern Taiwan. But if you put yourself out there, life has a way of beating you down and showing you the truth.
“Okay, repeat after me,” Lǎoshī stands in the front of the class commanding attention. I sit up a little straighter. “Jīntiān. hěn rè!”
Sometimes, when you're traveling, you meet someone that challenges everything you thought you knew. Maybe it's a person you spent days, even weeks, on the road with. Or perhaps it's someone you just met in passing.
I found Joy in Bangkok, at a coffee shop, in a soi off of Thanon Pra Athit, a young man about my age, maybe a year older.
I'm JR. I come from a long line of adventurers, some were nomadic explorers of the sea and others wandering cultivators of the earth. Ultimately, this legacy of drifters has deeply affected my view of travel. Read more...