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“Give me my passport or I call the police. Your choice.” Momentarily taken aback, the 70-year old Laotian woman across from me paused her tirade and sized me up, trying to decide if I was serious. I was and then some. Having politely but firmly been asking for my passport for nearly half an hour, […]

Apr
16
2014

Just as we did in Savannakhet, part of the reason we stayed as long as we did in Vientiane is because of the food. Six days in this city is probably unthinkable to most people, but when we weren’t trying to better ourselves through the MANY historical/spiritual buildings on offer, we were trying to do […]

Apr
14
2014

We had been warned MANY times that Vientiane was a capital city like no other, but some of my Western biases run deep, and I just can’t seem to shake my preconceived notions about what a capital city will be like. Immediately my imagination conjures up visions of shiny skyscrapers, flashing neon lights, honking horns, […]

Apr
10
2014

Loop De Loop in Thakhek, Part 2

Written by Tony April 10, 2014
Posted in Adventures, Laos

It was the second morning of our journey around the Thakhek Loop. The sun was barely up, my belly was full of delicious mini French toasts (how something so delightful could be prepared by our most definitely not-delightful hostess remains a mystery) and the road was calling. Thanks to our relaxing surroundings, we were decidedly […]

Apr
07
2014

Loop De Loop in Thakhek, Part 1

Written by Tony April 7, 2014
Posted in Adventures, Laos

I’ve always loved motorcycles, motorbikes, scooters… pretty much any motorized, two-wheeled transport. When we were planning our trip years before we ever left the comfort of our home for the first time, I always imagined what it would be like to ride through the exotic S.E. Asian countryside on a motorcycle halfway around the world. […]

Apr
02
2014

If you know anything about us at all then you know that if there is one thing that is likely to make us like a place and stay put for a while, that thing is clearly food. Now, Savannakhet with its population hovering around 120,000 people (seriously, that is the size of the SECOND LARGEST […]

Countless people told us that following Vietnam, we would surely find Laos boring. “It is verrrrry quiet in Laos,” they said, drawing out the word very so that the r sounded like a Spanish trill. “It’s the place you go when you want there to be nothing. No McDonald’s, no 7-11s. It has nothing!” Having […]

Mar
28
2014

I honestly believe that there is nothing like food to bring people together. I think if Chewing the Fat has proven anything, it’s that just TALKING about food can be enough to unite people and make us happier. I know that every time someone reaches out telling me that they want to take part in […]

The ironic thing about being a long-term traveler is that the “travel” part of the process is soon the thing you come to like least about this lifestyle. Wax philosophical all you like about how it’s all about the journey rather than the destination, but I’m betting that 9 out of 10 travelers would vote […]

Mar
24
2014

So Long, Saigon

Written by Stephenie Harrison March 24, 2014
Posted in Musings, Vietnam

For the last month, every time I have set forth into the busy streets of Saigon, I have felt the keen pangs of grief. The pains are sharpest and most acute when I’m on the back of our motorcycle and we zip through the swirling snarls of traffic; it’s when I feel most alive and […]

Vietnam is a deceptively big country. From top to bottom, it snakes over 3000 kilometers, and travelers who aren’t careful with their itineraries may find themselves spending more time in transit than actually taking in the sights. On our first visit to Vietnam, we spent two months traveling from Hanoi up to the northern border […]

Mar
14
2014

Yan Can Cook, We Can Eat

Written by Stephenie Harrison March 14, 2014
Posted in Food, Vietnam

My mother’s side of the family is from Trinidad. Even if you can’t locate Trinidad on a map, know this: Trinidadians love to eat. What nation doesn’t, really? Regardless, visits to my maternal grandmother (Nanny) always revolve around food. Although her narrow house spans many floors, inevitably foot traffic at family gatherings is always highest […]

Mar
10
2014

On Being Cut Short

Written by Stephenie Harrison March 10, 2014
Posted in Musings

I will not be the first person to tell you that in order to live a life of full-time travel, I had to make sacrifices. Everyone who has ever decided to travel for an extended period of time has had to give up something in pursuit of that dream—whether it’s cutting out daily trips to […]

When we originally launched Chewing the Fat, we had no idea how popular it would prove to be. We mostly just thought it would be fun to talk to some of our favorite travel bloggers about one of our favorite topics and the one thing that seems to unite us: food. It was our fiercest […]

Asia is a continent of superlatives. Nearly every attraction we have visited is touted as the top of its kind and worthy of its own chapter in the Guinness Book of World Records. I’m not sure how many “biggest buddha in country X/Asia/the world/the universe” we have seen at this point, but suffice to say […]