Motorbike malfunctions and mishaps

After India I swore I would never be that idiot Westerner who shows up in some random tropical country, hops on a motorbike and finds myself three days later on crutches in an internet cafe arguing with with the British Airways call centre about why my flight simply must be changed to accommodate my broken…

Budget breakdown for one month in Cambodia

“But how do you afford to travel?” is one of the most frequent questions not only from people at home, but also from others on the road. Most people I meet are on some sort of an extended holiday – usually 3-6 months, but sometimes stretching out as far as a year. Occasionally I’ll meet…

Eat like a local: street food in Cambodia

Fried crickets, skewered snakes and curried arachnids were on my radar well before I even set food in Cambodia. But in reality how does Cambodian street food stack up against my pre-trip Google results? Well, let’s tick off what I have actually seen roadside: Fried crickets? Yes. Curried arachnids? No. Skewered snakes? Yes. But it…

What’s in a name: from vagabond to digital nomad

The labels we self-impose define us to others, but also to ourselves. Before I was a scientist, a biologist, a student, an expat, a bit of a nut and a total geek. I was a rock-climber, a forest cat-owner, a La Pavoni coffee-drinker… I could go on, but suddenly the tune to Ben Harper’s Joker…

The Kampot Junket

The bad part first: we rented motorbikes. I had never driven one before, but was quickly taught by a guy who didn’t even have his license. Then we drove them all day, and after dark. Without lights. I dropped mine. And then drove it into a barbed wire fence. Sorry, mom. But then there is…

Sailing Koh Rong, the Monkey Island

Last week I channelled my inner Andy Samberg for my very own “I’m on a boat!” experience with some Cambodian flair. No nautical theme pashmina afghan, but I did have my flippy-floppies! Koh Rong is, quite frankly, enormous. The tiny stretch of beach that hosts the vast majority of the island’s food & accommodation abuts steep…

First impressions of Koh Rong: Cambodia’s island paradise (maybe?)

You know that never-ending white sand beach with palm trees and brightly coloured local boats that you have seen 1000 times associated with South-East Asia? Well, if it wasn’t taken in Thailand (and it probably was) then it was most likely an image of Long Beach on Koh Rong, Cambodia. To be honest, I didn’t…

S-21: The genocide museum in Phnom Penh

The first few days here in Phnom Penh have been slow, a combination of jet-lag, passionfruit mojitos and Angkor beer. But now I have finally forced myself out of the hostel for my second excursion: a visit to Tuol Seng, or Security Office 21 (S-21 for short), a military prison under the Khmer Rouge that now…

2015: twelve in twelve

I’ve never been especially proficient at planning. I have three more nights in my hostel here in Phnom Penh, but don’t really know if I’ll go north or south after that, though at the moment my money is on south. I’m usually on the take it as it comes plan. However, that is not to say…

shirting . . . !

Fashion model is not high on my list of aspirations, but when my designer friend Ivan Rocco asked if I would participate in his latest social-media campaign called ‘shirting . . .’ I could hardly say no! Ivan, along with eight other rising stars (including four designers from his store – SQUAT – in Ljubljana), all…

Last day of ‘normal’ life

This time tomorrow I will be just leaving German airspace, on my way to Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam. The sun goes down in Sweden in about an hour, and I’ll take off before it comes up again. The last weeks have gone alternately fast and slow, and now time is both flying and crawling.  I…

Every tart in town: French edition

Across the street from my French abode is the hamlet’s boulagarie-patissarie. It is run by two men, one older, one younger, and they are open six days a week. I am sure the bakers are working 60 hour weeks and I can’t figure out how they are breaking even, let alone turning a profit. Even with lines…