Tag

vagabond

A Postcard from Lastovo

A

  Lastovo: isolated Adriatic island of jagged hills clad in holm oak and aleppo pine, where the sea laps sunbleached stones with tongue translucent blue. Settled by Illyrians and later controlled by Rome, over the centuries it was destroyed by Venice for harboring pirates, joined the Dubrovnik Republic, and passed through the hands of Napoleonic France, Austria, Italy, Yugoslavia, to finally...

Jostled By The Motion

J

I’m alone in my compartment as the train leaves Slovenia and enters the broad rolling fields of Hungary. The dark blue seat upholstery smells of dust, and the nautical gloss of the walls have faded to matte. I see “Magyar” go past on a rusted sign, and I’m reminded of a stamp collecting album someone gave me as a child. It was filled with names like “GDR” and...

Vagabond Dreams Outtakes #17—Journey’s End

V

  Vagabond Dreams Outtakes are “deleted scenes” from my book. Think of them as a “Special Features” disc of outtakes and curios. This incident took place in Belize… Belize City was a bit like Bluefields on the Mosquito Coast of Nicaragua: a seedy place with an aura of decay. But it didn’t feel like Central America. The musical lilt of Caribbean English had...

Jasper Evans

J

  I first read about Jasper Evans in a book by the explorer John Hare called Shadows Across the Sahara. Hare set out to retrace an ancient trade route from Lake Chad to Tripoli, a three month south-to-north crossing of the Sahara — 1,462 miles of barren desert known in the days of slavery as a place strewn with the carcasses of men and camels. The route was last crossed by Hanns...

Road Wisdom Top 10 Travel Books

R

  No one likes a well thought out reading list more than I do. They obsess me, it’s true. But they also serve to focus my efforts, reveal themes and dialogues that pass from author to author, and expose me to new writers I might not otherwise have read. I’m just a few books away from completing the Modern Library’s Top 100 Books of the 20th Century—a project I’ve been...

Under Prehistoric Skies

U

  I was digging through my files the other day, looking for the seeds of a new blog story, when I came across my first magazine assignment. I had just sold a major feature to Outpost on an expedition I’d done in the Taklamakan Desert. The story was getting good feedback, and when an opening came they asked me to travel on assignment to South Dakota with photographer Jason George. I was...

Contaminated Alibis

C

  Vagabond Dreams Outtakes are “deleted scenes” from my book. Think of them as a “Special Features” disc for a DVD yet to be invented. This incident took place in Bluefields, Nicaragua, on the Mosquito Coast, exactly 10 years ago…   I walked to the Enitel building to place a call before dinner. I hadn’t sent a message home in weeks. I expected end-of...

The Tools of My Trade

T

As a professional travel writer, people often ask me about the tools of my trade. I’d like to take this opportunity to tell you about my notebook. “Your notebook?” you might ask. “What the hell for? Isn’t one piece of paper as good as the next?” Au contraire, mon ami. Ask a craftsman who works with wood if one hammer or chisel is as good as another. Ask an...

Words That Piss Me Off

W

  As a writer it’s easy to rant about the decline of the English language, the erosion of literature, and the dumbing down of pop culture. Some embrace what they see as the “changing, dynamic nature” of the language. They adopt it and try to harness its supposed vibrancy, but this usually comes off as overly topical and is completely dated by the time next season’s TV...

Vagabond Dreams Outtakes #16—And I Was Just a Stranger There

V

Vagabond Dreams Outtakes are “deleted scenes” from my book. Think of them as a “Special Features” disc of outtakes and curios. This incident took place in Panama’s Darien Gap…   Banana trees and low bushy plants lined the dirt path that led beyond the village’s last tambo. Jungle pathways were never entirely clear, no matter how recently someone had...

Ryan Murdock

Author of Vagabond Dreams: Road Wisdom from Central America. Host of Personal Landscapes podcast. Editor-at-Large (Europe) for Canada's Outpost magazine. Writer at The Shift. Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.

NEWSLETTER

Sign up for my entertaining email newsletter


Get in Touch

Donate

Support the Personal Landscapes podcast with a donation

Recent Posts

Archives

WP AutoTerms Legal Pages