Thursday, July 19, 2012

What was your favorite place?

I have a lot. Here are four.

Dharamsala (by which I, like most white people, mean McLeod Ganj), because it's really pleasant. The Tibetan government and Dalai Lama live there, the climate is nice, and I found it easy to meet other travelers that I really got along well with. You can take classes in anything, do yoga, whatever; in another universe I just zoned out there for a couple months. I'm not sure if that would have been better or worse than the constant traveling that I did.

Ladakh, because it is really something else. Beautiful gompas, rugged mountains, usually-freezing weather. I am still a little frustrated I was sick my whole time here. If I had to make one trip back to India, I would take a friend or three and go hiking in Ladakh.

Switzerland, because it's all it's cracked up to be. Everything is clean and nice, first of all. The Alps, like the Himalayas, are cold and crisp and awesome.

Bosnia, because it's not. Great roads for motorbiking, rocky hills (or small mountains, if you will), great weather in spring, and super friendly people who gave me hours of their time even though I'm just some guy wandering through. Great food (if a bit heavy).

Other places I really like but didn't quite make this list: Bhutan, Darjeeling, small cities in the Czech Republic

Some other favorites (feel free to ask me about any of these if you're interested):
Favorite small city: Wellington, NZ
Favorite big city: Amsterdam or Munich but probably Amsterdam (this surprises me, as I used to think Amsterdam was kind of dirty)
Favorite artists: Frantisek Skala, Czech Republic; Amerigo Tot, Hungary
Favorite food: Bengal, Kerala, Nepal, and Bulgaria
Country I would most like to move to, if I had to move to somewhere: the Netherlands (although this is a cop out, because it's really just the country most like home)
Favorite beer: Germany. I can't count Belgium because I didn't go there, and I got to really like German beers this time. I think I prefer German beers if I'm going to be having a few.
Favorite language: Dutch (still, yes)
Favorite script: Tibetan. Because come on, this is the kind of script that wizards write in: 

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