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201, 2021

20 Best Photos Of 2020

By |January 2nd, 2021|Categories: Photos|1 Comment

20 Best Photos Of 2020.  Here we are again.  It is my annual wrap up for my twenty best photos.  And like every year is is not actually twenty photos, but that is a much more snappier title and better for SEO.  This year, stating the obvious, is unlike any other.  I had so many canceled trips which you read about in my A Year In Review 2020, but at least this gave me the opportunity to travel extensively in Thailand. Brunei My second visit to the tiny country of Brunei in South East Asia.  A great place for a long weekend.  Laid back and easy to explore. Senegal One of only two new countries for me in 2020, Senegal.  I was able to visit the northern half of the country.  Senegal has a lot to offer. Thailand This is where I spent the majority of my year.  While I have "lived" here for 7 years, this has been a great opportunity to see and do more than on any given year. Bangkok Bangkok's most popular and [...]

2612, 2020

A Year In Review 2020

By |December 26th, 2020|Categories: Advice, Counting Countries 193 Countdown|5 Comments

A Year In Review 2020.  I would never have anticipated writing a year in review like I am now.  Every year I enjoy writing this overview, but this year was a bit disappointing.  I have been incredibly fortunate with my health and that of my family in contrast to many across the world who have suffered healthwise or financially.  And by serendipity, I was extremely fortunate to have spent most of my year in 2020 in Thailand.  While I spent the end of March, April and May mostly quarantined in my apartment in Bangkok, since June Thailand has been open and mostly Covid free.  This has allowed me the opportunity to safely live and explore within Thailand for the last half of the year.  The only catch, Thailand has been virtually shut to inbound flights and visitors.  So if I leave, it would be extremely difficult for me to re-enter. I spent the New Year welcoming 2020 for the first time in Thailand at a friend’s house party in Jomtien Beach.  Before Covid ran rampant, I [...]

2212, 2020

Lopburi Monkey Festival

By |December 22nd, 2020|Categories: Asia, Unique Experiences|3 Comments

Lopburi Monkey Festival.  Everyone loves a great party and the monkeys of Lopburi are no different.  Think great conversation, abundant food, and some catchy music are you too can be celebrating at the Lopburi Monkey Festival. Lopburi, a town of 30,000, can be found a couple of hours north of Bangkok.  It is an easy drive, or you can take a train from Bangkok, a bit longer at four hours.  Lopburi is an ancient city of Thailand and it dates to the 14th century. Prang Sam Yod can be found in the Old Town of Lopburi and is built in the Khmer style that you might be familiar with from Angkor Wat.  This well-known Hindu landmark dates to the 13th century.  But what might be more memorable are the 2-3,000 crab-eating macaques that make their home there. These monkeys are very used to seeing humans and can be quite aggressive. If you have a monkey phobia avoid visiting Lopburi.  Within several minutes of arrival at Prang Sam Yod a trio of monkeys utilized me as a jungle [...]

1012, 2020

Indy Nelson … Looking For The Pieces Of A Puzzle

By |December 10th, 2020|Categories: Podcast|4 Comments

Indy Nelson has traveled to every country in the world. I learned about Indy from former guest, Lexie Alford who mentioned she had collaborated with him in regard to the document collection phase of her quest to earn a Guinness World Record.  I had learned that Indy himself attempted to earn a Guinness World Record for being the youngest male to have traveled to every country in the world.          Thanks to my patrons Simen Flotvik Mathisen, William Schelling, Steph Rowe, Ted Nims, Bisa Myles, and Adam Hickman for supporting Counting Countries. They help pay for the production of this podcast.  You can support this podcast by going to Patreon.com/CountingCountries.   And at this time, I want to welcome two new patrons … one you are very familiar with, Thor Pedersen of Once Upon A Saga, and also Phillip Jones.  Phillip stated he enjoys the podcast because “each guest has unique stories to share”.  Phillip like many of us has had his travels interrupted this year, but has a great list of countries that [...]

1211, 2020

Jack Goldstein … Itching To Cross Borders

By |November 12th, 2020|Categories: Podcast|5 Comments

 Jack Goldstein has traveled to 134 countries Jack and I have never met in person, but we have been close, one time both being in the Caucasus at the same time years ago.  And I “met” him numerous times over a quarantine Zoom trivia game for a number of weeks during the height of Covid this past spring.  Regardless of never meeting Jack in person, I was curios to learn more about his travels.    Thanks to my patrons Simen Flotvik Mathisen, William Schelling, Steph Rowe, Ted Nims, Bisa Myles, and Adam Hickman for supporting Counting Countries. They help pay for the production of this podcast.  You can support this podcast by going to Patreon.com/CountingCountries.  My patrons will hear the final part of my conversation with Jack. Be careful of what you wish for.  I always ask for reviews, and I just got a recent one from MFallik.  And he is not happy.  This person gave me one star.  Ouch. This person wrote ...  And a message from our friend’s at Untamed Borders. One country where travel [...]

411, 2020

Visiting Phuket Vegetarian Festival

By |November 4th, 2020|Categories: Asia, Unique Experiences|5 Comments

Visiting Phuket Vegetarian Festival.  Always look for the silver lining.  I have been “stuck” in Thailand since mid-March.  While I spent a couple of months mostly quarantined in my apartment, by June Thailand had effectively opened up.  This meant there was time to explore parts of Thailand I had not been to before.  The added bonus is Thailand had shut its doors to the 40 million tourists who annually visit the Kingdom.  The benefit was I was able to visit places with virtually no foreign tourists combined with the occasional discount as well. While perusing the calendar I noted that the Phuket Vegetarian Festival was taking place in mid-October.  This event had always been on my list, but I had always been out of the country during this festival.  This year was different.  I wasn’t leaving Thailand. The name can be a bit deceiving.  Yes, adherents consume vegetarian meals, actually vegan during the festival, but that is not one will recall after attending this nine-day event.  Devotees purify themselves in a unique manner and by doing so [...]

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