What to Expect & Who to Follow in 2016

2016 has been off to a great start so far. This term, my courses consist of anthropology, linguistics, second language learning (Deutsch), and First Nations and endangered language studies, so I am finding all of them quite well. Vancouver is cold and wet, but I have lived in a climate similar to this before. I will survive. When spring does come, Expat-terns will be going ahead with its big yearly initiatives. However, in the meantime, we here at Expat-terns still have a lot in store for y’all when it comes to travel, photography, and language in 2016:

Exploring Canada

Despite having been in Canada for a few months, I still have not ventured through Vancouver or the interior of British Columbia as I much as I would have wanted to this last fall. I will be staying in Canada for, perhaps, the whole year, so I am beginning to plan on travels outside the metropolitan Vancouver area.

A friend has recommended visiting Vancouver Island, and I am excited to possibly take a sea plane when the occasion arises. The natural scenery and quaint atmosphere of the island’s main city, Victoria, may be a nice break from dynamic UBC and Vancouver; though, neither of these places are that large relatively speaking.

Reading week (spring break) is in mid February, and my aforementioned friend also hinted on a desire to go to Whistler in the near future. I have not skied or snowboarded in awhile, so there is a high chance I would make a fool of myself if I were to attempt to do either winter sport. However, seeing that the potential crew to go up to the mountains would mostly be from the tropics, I would still be the most experienced on the slopes from our group.

I will also be in Vancouver for most of the summer, which translates to concerts, hiking and more outside living, and of course, attending Vancouver Pride. Woo. We have a bunch in store for the Great White North!

Rwanda & Israel

I will be getting more details about both trips, but what I can tell you is that where I am going to specifically in Rwanda and the happenings that will take place there will not be shared as easily and publicly as I thought.

As a result of liability waivers and discretionary agreements, I will need to go through a process to write openly about the location to maintain integrity and privacy for its residents. For this reason, photography will be limited if not impossible. I can say the group at least will be heading into the capital, Kigali. So for now, let’s just be excited! My first steps in Africa! Rwanda, here we come!

In Israel, I believe the group will be going north. However, I would not be surprised if we at least visit Jerusalem for a day as well. More information will come soon, and I will forward what I learn most likely via Twitter. Either way, I hope to really get to understand the issues surrounding these nations’ respective struggles with race, bias, and genocide in their historic pasts and in the present day.

In short, I do not want to be another “voluntourist”. I plan to be simply present in each country to learn as much as I can without false motives nor inflated perceptions of my position in the communities we plan to visit.

Of course, I cannot go if I do not get the proper vaccination I have neglected to receive. Damn various colored fevers … However, this will be soon reprimanded. More news will follow shortly.

Guest Writers

Expat-terns is always trying to improve on itself. Our Twitter base is growing, and I am slowly learning to Instagram. It will get better; trust me.

Recently, Expat-terns has been in the process of acquiring some guest writers. We want additional voices to add to the conversations on student life and working abroad in places Expat-terns’ core has not yet traveled to like Scotland and Nepal.

Blogging can be an extremely egotistical activity. New perspectives and writing styles will be much appreciated and broaden the interests and topics for you all and myself included as well. Also, if any readers are interested in a little collaboration too, do not hesitate to comment below, tweet, or email me at expatterns@gmail.com. All news is good news here!

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Once again, I am also highlighting a few travel bloggers and their blogs (in no particular order) who have caught my interest for this coming year. Creative, comical, and even at times, casual too, these individuals’ websites and journeys give me travel envy for days. I am looking forward keeping up with their respective itineraries this 2016, and you should too!

No Money, Will Travel

She is Canadian, we are the same age, but her work is leagues more professional. Simply amazing, Andrea. Our travels have taken us to similar places recently: Croatia, Hungary, and the Czech Republic to name a few. Nevertheless, her blog is far more sophisticated than my own; some of this does has to do with blog templates and websites. However, it is her little choices that make the biggest differences for her readers; elegant title images and simple, clean formatting are a girl’s best friend, not to mention her insightful suggestions.

With sections on her own travel introspection, solo female adventurer tips (because travel is incredibly intersectional), and all with a healthy amount of traveler community collaboration and promotion, this student blogger is at a great place, proving age does not equate to experience or travel savvy.

Keep yourself informed with her happenings too on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

Planet and Go

First off, solid pun. Planet and Go = Plan-It and Go. Hilarious. I assume this was intentional wordplay, and even if it wasn’t, I still thoroughly enjoy Rory’s work. A true professional, he has had some incredible experiences and has used them to create a visual masterpiece of a website with tips, photography, and my favorite section of all from his blog, “Lost in Translation”: cute, funny ways language can trip all of us up. I also appreciate anyone who features quotes as well and provides ways to improve travel planning.

Moreover, I find his archival tendencies wonderfully informative; I wish I had kept track of all my methods of transport, times I’ve been lost, and the craziest foods I have eaten. Genius.This guy has honestly gone everywhere — I do not know what to expect next, but I am excited!

Plan it and go with Planet and Go by staying updated to his latest adventures on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, Instagram, and Youtube.

Travels of Adam

A travel hipster of sorts, the titular Adam is an American expat in Germany with a blog that sings to me on so many levels. It has no real niche, featuring a spectrum of theme like politics, food, music, and even gay travel! I always approve of bloggers and websites who focus or at least delve into LGBT+ travel narratives and tips. It can be a different experience traveling while gay, both interest and safety-wise.

His blog also has a feature that allows one to read it in German too, and as a student of the language, I find this incredibly useful and appropriate; he is in Germany. As a result of living in this central, travel-easy European country, he is able to supply extensive information about varying parts of his new continent, focusing on the trendiest bohemian places imaginable. His coolness transcends his articles into his blog design as well, making it both a fun and informative website to navigate. Sein Blog ist echt toll! Besuchen Sie ihn!

Stay informed with his most recent tips and photos on Instagram, Foursquare, Youtube, Twitter, and Facebook.

So, that’s that. I cannot wait to see how 2016 turns out. Everything is flexible, but these are the hopes. It should be a good year. I am still learning/attempting Hebrew, and the semester is already taking off. Nevertheless, Expat-terns is still standing strong. We are continuing to go farther and learn more. Please, join us — it is going to be a bumpy, but wild ride. More to come about Vancouver, British Columbia, and Israel!

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