Crosses, Skulls and a Thousand Churches: Religion in Romania

Castles, forests, Catholicism. And gypsies. And Dracula. I’m not proud of it, but these have long been the sole buzzwords I’ve always associated with Romania. Along with a lot of countries in Eastern Europe (and the continent in general), it’s been a place I’ve always vaguely wanted to visit but never really made the push to do [...]

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From Farm to Factory: the Truth Behind Cuban Cigars

The first cigar I ever smoked was when I was studying abroad in Florence. My friend Kath had been given one as a present: we lit it up along with a lot of giggling, took turns with a puff each – and suddenly I felt horribly sick. No one had ever told me not to [...]

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Eating My Way Around East London

Good English food is one of the things I find the hardest to be apart from when I’m travelling. When I last came back to London in January, I spent two weeks practically inhaling my body weight in cheese. And bagels. And bacon, roast dinners, English mustard and the delicious weirdness that is Marmite – [...]

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Navigating the Cuban Casa System

Navigating the Cuban Casa System

“Flora, wait!” Esther came trotting down the hallway of the small bungalow in her nightie, waving her hands as I stepped over the threshold into the thick heat of the midday Viñales sun. “What time do you want your dinner tonight? And would you like chicken or fish?” A strange request from a woman I’d only [...]

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A Lack of Familiarity: Learning How to De-Travel

It’s been a month since I left South America. Four weeks ago, my last full day in Colombia, I was on the outskirts of Bogotá playing tejo in a giant greenhouse with a group of Colombian friends; everyone drinking beers at three in the afternoon, throwing metal pucks at little packets of folded paper filled with [...]

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Still in Love with South America

“So you don’t know when you’re coming back?” I remember the face of my best friend, slightly astonished, as she took in what I was saying to her. Finally making that decision – to not buy a return ticket, to lay myself open to the possibilities of whatever the road had in store for me [...]

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