In the vast world of blogging, the Liebster Blog Award is a gentle, virtual hug from a fellow blogger. I’ve been nominated by the 2trvlrs, a wonderful couple (Theresia and Dave) who galavant around the world together and post gorgeous pics like this:


Thank you 2trvlrs!

As per the rules of this blogging chain-of-love, I will now answer the 11 questions they asked me and then I’ll pass on my own 11 questions to bloggers that deserve a virtual hug too.

Feel the love yet?

Imagine you are on a lonely island, which three things would be the most important to you?

Oh eazzy:

1) a camera,
2) a telescope,
3) unlimited pretzel M&Ms (because, why not?).

If you had one wish, what would you want for yourself or someone else?

World peace? Or is that too stereotypical?

This is really sentimental, but I would want a student I tutored a few years ago in Newark, NJ to achieve her goal of studying art abroad in Spain (and going to London for a One Direction concert). She deserves it.

Why are you blogging?

My reason for blogging really boils down to the simple fact that I love to write about a wide range of different topics, and until I can do so full-time (professionally), I just decided to build my own platform.

What do you consider “home”?

This is actually a question that inspired my first blog a few years ago, and this blog today. Since I was a child, I moved around almost every 2 years. Leaving the US for Saudi Arabia when I was young, and eventually moving to Canada 2 years ago. Home for me, as strange as it sounds, still feels like Saudi Arabia even though that home is now just a mere memory and I haven’t been back for almost 6 years.

I guess I’m still figuring this one out. Like I said in a past post called Daughter to Father,

“– she is a part of a generation that he will struggle to understand. A generation of wanderers, migrants, and global citizens – souls that feel home isn’t in an American suburb, but a corner of the world that they may never actually discover.”

Have you ever lived abroad and if yes, how did it change you?

Oops, I may have already answered this above! I’ve actually lived in Canada and Saudi Arabia (as well as a few months in Kenya). All three of these countries changed me in different ways.

I was young when I moved to Saudi Arabia so I’m not sure it changed me as much as made me who I am today. As a fellow third-culture-kid said in my piece, What it’s like growing up as a third-culture-kid in Saudi Arabia: “Living there didn’t change me. It formed me. It’s not that I accept other cultures; it’s that I never question their validity in the first place.”

Living in Kenya for a few months on a research trip in 2012 completely changed my career interests and outlook on several different issues. Working at the Kakuma Refugee Camp was, as cliche as it sounds, an eye-opening experience because I learned more about the global yet very personal implications of conflict, poverty and international aid. As well as the insane durability of the human spirit. (Which you can read more about here.)


Finally, Canada. What a great place, eh? Other than indoctrinating me with propaganda about hockey, Tim Hortons, what really happened during the War of 1812 and the importance of saying “sorry,” Canada has been a great place to watch what’s unfolding in the US. Especially from a vantage point that is completely impacted by American actions, but almost entirely powerless to influence them.

Could you imagine giving up your everyday life and becoming a digital nomad; working while travelling and changing your place constantly?

100%. Although eventually I may have a mid-life crisis and wonder how nice it would be to own a house, a library and a car.

Have you had any bad experiences while traveling? If yes, what happened?

A few! One that was incredibly embarrassing then, but pretty hilarious now, was when my dad’s love for chocolate-covered ice cream got us kicked out of a gelato shop in Italy. Lesson: Don’t act super American and open up an ice cream before you’ve paid for it. Unless you want an Italian zia screaming, “Ahh, e stupido americano!”

What are your goals for 2017, personal and regarding your blog?

The biggest goal I have for my blog is to simply maintain it. I’m the type of person who takes on many different projects, over works myself and then has to abandon things because I simply can’t keep it up anymore. My second goal is to interview more travellers, expats and third-culture-kids than I was able to in 2016 (at least 50% more).

Personally, I aim to continue building my media portfolio and honing in my skills in content development (specifically video). So that by this time next year, I’ll be working on a really awesome, interesting, and impactful documentary (tbd).

How would you dress for carnival, if you came to celebrate with us in Cologne in February?

Well, I hate to be that person but I strongly dislike clowns (I shouldn’t have watched IT when I was 7) so I may skip the carnival because clowns seem to be crawling all over Cologne during that time, but I would definitely come visit Cologne on February 29th!


Whew, I think I learned about myself answering those questions! So, now it’s my turn.

My nominees are:

And my questions are:

  1. If you could grab a coffee with any politician, who would it be and what would you ask?
  2. What question do you hate to answer?
  3. If the time came, and you were chosen to form the first human colony on Mars — would you go? Why or why not?
  4. What’s your spirit animal and why?
  5. Leo Tolstoy once said, “If you want to be happy, be.” What does that mean to you?
  6. If you could go back and re-live any moment of your life, when would it be?
  7. What show (or shows) are you binge-watching right now?
  8. If you had to spend a year (24/7, 365) with a comedian, who would you choose?
  9. What historical event would you have liked to witness?
  10. Are you a glass half-full, or a glass half-empty type person?
  11. What do you think the world will be like in 2050?