These are from San Juan, Puerto Rico. Puerto Rico is a special place to me, for a lot of reasons, and San Juan is a gorgeous city I fall in love with all over again every time I visit.

The thing about PR is that it's calm. Something about Puerto Rico fills me with a sense that the world has slowed down just a little, and the sun is shining a little brighter. The ocean isn't just in your ears-- it's in the taste of mofongo and rice, and heavy in the air, and so shimmering when you look down on it from the high walls. You'll burn up in a minutes lying on the sand, and even faster in the mango groves. 

These pictures are from just the city, though, since a lot of the pictures from el Yunque have my sister's face in them and i have a no-reveal policy on her bc of her work haha.

And these are a little older, from Nicaragua. I'm an avid outdoorswoman and hiker. My friend Haruru once took me hiking in Shenandoah and I went even though my ankle was fractured (without telling her) because I couldn't say no to a new sunrise hike.

So as a hiker, Nicaragua was perfect for me. I did volunteer work as an interpreter, living in Santo Tomás, up in the mountains. No cars, no electricity, no refrigeration. Felt like home, haha, I did a lot of terrific writing, a lot of mule riding, and a lot of swimming naked in mountain lakes. The original inception of one of my current projects happened out here, sitting between two vaqueros smoking cigarettes as the sky went rain-dark. This is another place I love.

I have fewer of these without my face in them somewhere, haha.


And these next photos are from a hike in Busan to a shrine up in mountains. (and bonus late afternoon beach walking)

This was a gorgeous day. I had a lot of studying to do but it's always fun to visit another shrine. i've always been obsessed with them. During high school, when i lived in yokohama, i discovered hiking-- I took a million hikes, and now i choose where i'll go by how good the hiking is. but honestly, nothing can beat the korean mountains! they're fun hikes. all over the peninsula there are amazing hikes, and gosh, don't get me started on jeju.

anyway, busan's a great, great hiking spot, and i've never lived in busan so it counts for this picspam.

Lastly some photos from Namhansanseong. This was less of a hike and more of a walk, but it was a really great day. I was with Mijin and Sujin and Pak-seonsaengnim, and we drank coffee with honey at a picnic veranda, and it looked like sunset all day. i loved it.