Thank You, Chef

Mark Stewart Opinions 38 Comments

I’ve tried several times to write this post, each time unable to get it right. First I wrote out of anger and frustration, the second draft came out of sadness and confusion. Empathy, in a subtle way, came next. I’d never met him, yet my emotionally-charged, incoherent ramblings would suggest otherwise. I’m not here to pretend to understand the man, I didn’t know him. Like most of you I only know what he shared openly, in his books and on …

The Best Travel Books We’ve Ever Read

Mark Stewart Opinions 55 Comments

As we packed up our house and sold our belongings in preparation for our new life, the books on the shelves were one of the last things we touched. We sat on the floor and reminisced about some of our favourite reads. Quite a collection had built up over the years. Many of the books were read only once, a few we hadn’t yet gotten around to. Then there were the ones that had been read and re-read countless times, …

Pickle Perspective, or: Memento Mori

Mark Stewart Opinions 6 Comments

Prior to leaving on this journey, after we had moved out of our condo and into our respective parent’s basements, I was relaxing on the couch one evening, eating a pickle. It was a Bick’s Dill Pickle, Polski Ogórki to be specific. Pickles are a near-perfect food and include many distinct styles, each serving their own purpose: Kosher dills to accompany a nice smoked meat sandwich, spicy pickled beans in a ceasar, or cornichons along side your charcuterie board. Then …

2018: New Year, New Goals

Mark Stewart Travel Stories 2 Comments

Typing this from a hut in the Guatemalan jungle, it’s clear that for Kylee and I, the goal we set for ourselves at this time last year has definitely been a success. Getting here was a long road, requiring a lot of sacrifice; and we weren’t entirely sure how it would feel.

So far, it’s going alright.

Home Again, for the First Time

Mark Stewart Travel Stories Leave a Comment

Before we even arrive at our hostel, we recognize this place. Though we’ve never been here before, so much is completely familiar. The design of the buildings, crumbling with age, fresh paint covering recent concrete repairs to the exterior walls; the way semi-existent traffic rules are only sort-of followed, yet everything seems to flow in perfect smoothness. Upon arrival, we exit the airport taxi, and the familiarity is immediately amplified. The evening air is heavy, and even though some heat …

Favourite Place

Mark Stewart Opinions Leave a Comment

It’s a question I’m often asked: “So of the places you’ve been, what’s your favorite?”. Typically my answer is Nepal, for several reasons, but that’s another story. I’ve recently thought deeper into it, that’s not exactly the correct answer. To be honest my absolute favorite place is the departures lounge of the airport. The television show ‘Departures’ is what really clued me in to this little epiphany. Why would a show about travelling have a title based around the part of …

Bangkok: The Moment I Knew I Was a Traveller

Mark Stewart Travel Stories 4 Comments

Still riding the high from the Blade Runner-esque shock of Tokyo only a day prior, I stood standing on the rooftop of our hostel, struggling to grip the fast-warming sweaty beer in my hand. I remember every detail of this moment, the light brown stray dog in the alley below, the blue skirt drying on the line across said alley, the shards of broken glass embedded in concrete surrounding the local properties.
 
Read More