My mission is to be curious, to witness, document, tell stories, capture the essence of the Balkan region, (in particular ex-Yu nations) as I continue to assimilate and learn from it and the people here.
This is not just another tourist blog about what attractions to see. Since I live here, I want to include more than just pretty photos.. but a dose of real, everyday life here. The usual good, bad, and ugly, with a dash of weird, perplexing, amusing, irritating, inspiring, and mundane.
This blog is for everyone, but mostly long-term travellers, expats, and nomads who may need honest, no bullshit information from someone who isn’t getting paid to sugarcoat.
I also do like to help local economies and business owners, but only the ones that “get it” and are interested in building long-term relationships with people that visit here longer term (and who respect their temporary home) ..not in making short-term cash at their expense.
Please also go to the Soundtrack page and listen to some of my favorite tracks that I’ve heard in various cafes, on the radio, or shared to me from friends.
Listen as you browse through photos!
This is not a typical travel blog
Does the world REALLY need another travel blogger ? Who knows. There are some great travel blogs out there, and also a lot of junk.
I could care less what the top 10 things to do in Split are.. not because I don’t like Split, but creating a life, creating a story, or even simply just hanging out in a place.. often has very little to do with what restaurants or tourist attractions you visit.
It’s about creating more interesting memories, no matter where you are at, or becoming a real resident and part of a community.
It can also be very, very challenging to build a business from scratch while on the road, while assimilating into a culture that is sometimes very open to new ideas and people, but also sometimes quite the opposite.
Some local residents don’t want to believe that a foreigner without a lot of money.. who still has to manage quite a bit of bureaucracy, can find a way and actually be happy.
And many more have gone out of their way to help. For this reason, I want to give back and provide a platform for locals, who I think are also a vital part of a nomad’s journey. You don’t hear their voice on the vast majority of travel blogs.
I had a flash of insight recently, and decided that I wanted to create more of a space for locals to tell THEIR story about living in this region. I think this will help convey the most vivid and real perspective.
I’ll still keep telling the story of my personal journey, because my story ALSO counts, as the foreigner attempting to assimilate.
I also want to add that in many places, tourism is starting to become more of a liability than an asset. I think that we all have to begin to look at and embrace new concepts that will be more sustainable not only for tourism, but for the beautiful places in this region.
I’m approaching this project with deep respect as I move into the next phase in my own journey. I’ve come a long way since I left the U.S., but I still have a long way to go. I’m not trying to solve the world’s problems but I can’t help but think of ways I can give back using the skills and experience I have.
My hope is that this is all some combination of entertaining, educational, and for some, even useful.
Keeping it FUN..
I take my work seriously, but I don’t take myself too seriously. I want this to be about YOU, a fellow nomad or slow traveller in this region, or a local who is interested in building bridges, blurring borders, or even becoming a nomad or working remotely yourself!
Expect more surprises along the way.. not just my stories, but cool things like guides, courses, and likely a book, and contributions from people just like you.
In the meantime, to start…
I invite you to engage all of your senses, and have included not only pretty pictures and stories, but videos, usually unedited, music, a soundtrack list, as well as some film and book recommendations.
SO put on the headphones, browse, and if you are feeling particularly ambitious, make some Turkish coffee and transport yourself here.
There will be more coming, of course, as the concept develops. This is the version 2.0.
If you find that you too want to be a Balkan Nomad.. I would LOVE to hear from you! I will have more tips and practical info coming soon.
Not a local. Not a tourist. Not exactly an expat. Not even a typical “digital nomad.”
Recently, hile crossing the border from Croatia into Montenegro, I met a man on the bus who noticed my speaking the “language” He asked how I knew Serbian, and I think he was impressed, which amused me.
I replied that I live in Split, Zagreb, Belgrade, Mostar, Sarajevo, and now possibly Kotor.
He then said: “Ah, ti si Balkanka!”
Which means: “Woman of the Balkans.”
This is interesting, I thought. Me? OK. I just smiled, paused, nodded my head slowly and said: “Da.” I’ll go with that for now and see where it takes me.
I call 5 countries my home.