Browsing Posts tagged Perceptive Travel

Burma boy monks

Yes, it’s time for a new issue of Perceptive Travel, bringing you interesting travel narratives from wandering book authors since 2006.

This month we visit three continents and explore areas that aren’t usually on the tourist map. Camille Cusumano returns with a recounting of her time teaching tango to disadvantaged youths in a rough part of Kenya’s capital. With the program running on donated funds, it’s not a happy dance when the money starts lining pockets. See Dance of Betrayal in Nairobi.

Michael Shapiro exits the well-worn pagoda trail in Myanmar and visits Kalaw, once a British hill station. He lucks upon a two-day event meant to anoint new monks to be, from ages 4 to 11, before they enter the monastery. With parades, grand costumes, and head shaving, it’s a colorful glimpse into local culture. See Rites of Passage in Myanmar’s Tribal Highlands. Farmer Tom

Becky Garrison goes on a very strange press trip when she hooks up with Kush Tourism for a “Cannabis Grow Tour.” With Washington State being the next in line to legalize marijuana, farmers and vendors are gearing up for a green gold rush. See the full story here.

Every month we feature round-ups of new travel-related books worth checking out and dive into some world music worth downloading to take on the road. William Caverlee reviews a book on riding the seas on a gargantuan warship, going from the top of Everest to the sea by paraglider and kayak, and yet another pictorial list book from Lonely Planet.

Graham Reid does the music honors, spinning a rare union of NYC and Guinea, time-travel in India on a collection from the vaults, classic old soul from Africa, and a surprisingly good compilation of African blues from Rough Guides. See them all here.

better life abroadEach month our newsletter subscribers and Facebook followers have a shot at winning something useful and in August it was Don L. of Alaska. He scored a new pair of Pickpocket Proof nylon business pants, which are my current faves. He’ll be holding onto all his valuables when he heads off to Southeast Asia next month.

This time we’re giving away my new book, A Better Life for Half the Price to one reader, while another will get the Committed package that comes with a lot of extra insider access goodies ($89 value). If you are already on the newsletter list, watch your inbox. If not, pay attention to the Facebook feed. Subtitled “How to prosper on less money in the cheapest places to live,” it’s essential reading for anyone contemplating a life upgrade by moving abroad.

Taiwan travel story

(c) Rich J. Matheson

With that title you probably know…it’s time for a new collection of the best travel stories on the web. The July issue of Perceptive Travel is out now and we go wandering in pursuit of some strange angles.

Luke Armstrong is back with another tale from his adopted home of Guatemala, following a naturalist with exploration in his blood who is looking for a rare butterfly first discovered by his great-grandfather.

Guatemala travel story

Steven Crook, author of several books on Taiwan, takes us deep into Blood Rites in a Taiwanese Temple.

Carolyn Heller returns this month, fresh off her award from the Travel Media Association of Canada for a previous story on northern Ontario. This time she looks at isolation of a different kind while encountering a North Korea soldier on the border with China. See One Step Across.

William Caverlee checks out a few soul-searching travel books from Frances Mayes, Donna Leon, and Esther Woolfson. Graham Reid covers new world music albums from around the globe, including a great collection of Indian classical music and the return of Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars.

STM laptop bag for travelWe give away something cool each month to a Perceptive Travel subscriber/follower who is paying attention and last month two readers scored. They each got gift certificates to go shopping at the Samsonite USA website for a new suitcase or a daypack. Speaking of something to take on your next trip, this time one lucky reader will get this nice $140 value Drifter Pack from STM Bags. I’ve been using one of these myself lately and it has become my go-to daypack when I need to travel with my laptop and have loads of pockets for other gadgets.

If you’re already on our newsletter list, then just watch your inbox and check the bulk folder if the address is not in your approved list. If not and you want to get in on this month’s, just go follow Perceptive Travel on Facebook and watch for the announcements that will run a few times in July.

 

Mongolia travel story

Ah yes, it’s a new month and there’s a new issue of Perceptive Travel online magazine, with the best travel stories from wandering book authors.

In May we travel to diverse spots on the globe and also highlight some worthy travel-related books and music. We welcome two authors making their first appearance in the webzine. Larry Zuckerman, author of The Potato, is an American Jew in Israel when he joins up with a tour company run by ex-soldiers to see how the politics of occupied Palestine play out on the ground in Hebron. See Make Hummus, Not Walls.

Marco Ferrarese, author of Nazi Goreng brings us a story on hard cheese and hard horse riding on a Mongolia steppes adventure. See Cutting the Cheese, Mongolian Style.

David Lee Drotar returns with another tale from Canada, this time exploring Quebec in the dead of winter for some outdoor activities of snowmobiling, dogsledding, and skiing. But with a twist… See The Blade Runners of Quebec.

Quebec winter adventure

William Caverlee reviews a few new and notable travel books: Ukraine before the conflict, overland Morocco by motorcycle, and travelers writers’ food experience around the globe. Graham Reid spins a few mash-up world music albums, but also the aptly named collection The Rough Guide to the Best African Music You’ve Never Heard. Perceptive Travel newsletter winner

Each month one of our loyal (and attentive) readers scores something useful for their travels for free. Here’s a picture of our March winner Jack with his Granite Gear pack. In April, reader Jen from New York state scored a nice pair of $90 water sneakers from Sperry.

A month from now somebody is going to have that old Timbuk3 song in their head when their future starts looking brighter. They’ll be sporting a new pair of Vibe sunglasses from Bolle with polarized lenses—a $100 value. If you want it to be you, get on the newsletter list or at least follow Perceptive Travel on Facebook.

travel sunglasses

arctic hiking story

After a hiatus publishing our first most popular travel stories issue, we’re back with a batch of new travel stories from Panama, western China, and Arctic Canada. Plus reviews of new travel books and world music.

This issue marks the debut of Canadian writer Jerry Kobalenko, a many who thinks its fun to hike across snow-blown plains in sub-zero weather with an expedition partner he just recently met. See his story here: Crossing Labrador by Foot with Noah.

western China travelLuke Armstrong is back with a tale of getting roped into hiking Panama’s highest mountain at sunrise and seeing a killer with a knife at the top. Then having no ride when he got to the bottom. See The Horror Movie Atop Panama’s Volcán Barú

Can travelers make a positive difference in the local cultural attitudes? James Dorsey and his traveling partner find a way to do their small part with one ancient vendor in an Ughur area of China. See Giving Face in China.

Susan Griffith is back with a batch of interesting new travel books, including the latest on Africa from Paul Theroux. Laurence Mitchell reviews new world music albums that are all a mash-up of one culture and another.

Perceptive Travel newsletter subscribers get a shot every month at scoring a new travel gear item. Last month reader Kim from Pennsylvania won a cool Bluetooth portable speaker from NYNE. This time someone will get a pair of great $130 shoes from Vasque that are so new they’re not even out yet. Here’s where you can get on the list. You’ll get an e-mail only once a month when we put out a new issue.

New England

Please come inside…

Perceptive Travel Webzine launched on January 1, 2006, which means we have been cranking out great travel stories for eight years now. Just saying that makes me tired, so this month instead of putting out a batch of new material, we’re looking back, highlighting the most popular articles and some of the notable award winners.

off-kilter

Always a bit off-kilter…

For the first few issues eight years ago I basically called or e-mailed travel authors I knew and said, “Will you help me launch?” Thankfully I knew some people with a following—before there was much of anything called social media. The first few issues included authors like Rolf Potts, Bruce Northam, Jen Leo, David Farley, Peter Moore, and Jeff Greenwald.

On the issue page I’ve highlighted the most popular stories since we launched way back then, after some 2/3 of a million readers have checked in to check us out. Not surprisingly, the top two articles have the word “sex” in the title, including a story from that very first issue in 2006: Rolf Potts’ Tantric Sex for Dilettantes. The other, from 2009, had that word and Burning Man, which is apparently an irresistible combination for many web searchers. (Unfortunately, some didn’t stick around to read the articles as they were not quite what the searchers had in mind…)

The other 8 most popular Perceptive Travel stories run the gamut by geography and subject matter though, from a burning devil effigy in Guatemala to a musing on whether Sedona is a big hoax to Burma’s purpose-built capital city of Naypyidaw. Others are from Mexico City, Thailand, Jordan, New England, and Hawaii.

We’ve won dozens of “best travel writing” awards since we started and gotten a bunch of stories into anthologies of great writing. So I also highlighted a few of the most decorated articles. Maybe not the most clicks, but the most kudos from the judges. These are from Benin, Mexico, France, El Salvador, and the USA. See them all here.

Are you on the list?

nullIf you’re on the Perceptive Travel e-mail newsletter list, you only bugged by us once a month, but you have a good-odds shot at winning something cool to take along on your journeys.

This month one winner will snag a portable null. It even comes with clips to secure it to a bike, a stroller, or a pole. Watch your inbox for how to enter, or if you’ve missed the boat on signing up in time, you can follow Perceptive Travel on Facebook and watch for the contest announcement.

Thanks to all of you interested in more than shallow top-10 lists and best beaches slideshows who have supported good narrative writing over the years. Tell a friend!



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