Who Am I?
My name is Aena. I was born in a small town in Southern Philippines, an hour away by car from General Santos City. I lived among pineapples, seasonal grasshoppers, butterflies, star spiders, and trees – norfolk, acacia, flame, macadamia. When I was 13, my dad’s job brought the family to Davao City. 3 years later, I moved to Manila for my undergraduate studies. I stayed in Quezon City for 5 years and then moved to Caloocan with my entire family because it was closer to my sister’s university (and cheaper!), and then moved back to Quezon City for my masters. In 2010, I moved to Hawai’i to do my PhD. I finished in 2015 and moved to Copenhagen for work. I have been living in Copenhagen since August 2015.
I can’t stop moving. I’m a chronic wanderer, with an unquenchable thirst for new adventures. I have traveled to over 30 countries (most of which I did not pay for! *yippee*). I have a PhD in Economics, I am a certified NAUI open sea diver and an amateur photographer, and I have recently taken an interest in Kung Fu, acrylic painting classes, and indoor gardening. According to the Myers-Briggs Personality Test, I am a Mastermind Planner (INTJ). I enjoy masterminding my travel plans, making detailed travel itineraries, and sharing them online using this blog. I love sharing my travel adventures. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I enjoy writing them.
Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime. – Mark Twain
This is precisely why I travel: to learn and grow and progress as a person. I enjoy cultural exchanges and history lessons. I like seeing the sights, hearing the sounds, tasting the food, and taking part in the culture. I love how travel has shaped and changed me. This is why I travel.
How Do I Travel?
I am a huge fan of budget travel and do-it-yourself trips. I believe that travel should not be expensive and that everyone should be able to afford it. I like that I can set my own pace when I DIY my trips. Being the mastermind planner that I am, I also like that planning trips forces me to get to know a place a better than most superficial tour packages. I enjoy talking with locals, eating local cuisine, and trying out local activities.
Although I consider myself a citizen of the world, I was born and raised a Filipino. This is something that no amount of traveling and cultural immersion can ever take away for me. My tastebuds are “eastern” and my likes and dislikes are benchmarked against what I have experienced the first few years of my life. The things I want to see and do are influenced by what I have not seen and done when growing up.
Traveling for me does not necessarily mean traveling to a different country. It could be traveling to a place within the neighborhood or to a neighboring city. I believe that as long as I keep an open mind and an adventurous spirit, traveling (even to a place I’ve traveled to so many times before) will bring forth something new for me. Traveling does not need to cost time or break the bank. It can be cheap, fun and near.
I travel in all sorts of ways: alone, with family, with friends, DIY, with a tour company, to the city, to the country, backpacking style, posh with designated drivers, for fun, for business, to get lost, to find myself. I am not choosey. I have learned that each traveling style comes with its own advantages and disadvantages. When traveling, I like to dress comfortably (as opposed to fashionably). I always carry with me a bottled water, a portable charger with charging cable, a cellphone with a data plan, and a lip balm; all of which are inside a slash-proof water-resistant bag.
I always travel with a camera on hand. I usually shoot with my iPhone, Canon T3i, a Go Pro, or a waterproof Canon camera, depending on terrain and weather. I loooove taking pictures. If any of my photos are of interest and you would like to use them, please send me a message and link back appropriately. You can use the contact form here.
What Is This Blog?
This blog is my travel blog. It is a venue for me to talk about and share my travel experiences (with photos!). I have divided the blog in two ways. Places and Spaces contains a list of countries and cities I have traveled to while Travel Activities categorizes topics into lessons and advices on how to and where to, cultural reflections, yearly roundups, historical accounts, food and drinks, lists, and DIY travel itineraries. If the navigation is confusing, or if there’s something you can’t find, feel free to send me message here.
The reading of all information in this blog is of your own free will. If you do not accept my terms and conditions, you should cease the use of this website immediately. Even though I work very hard to provide you with well-researched and up-to-date information, I make no representations or warranties of any kind about the completeness, accuracy, reliability, suitability or availability of any information, products, services or related graphics contained in this blog for any purpose. All information provided in this blog is for general information and entertainment purposes only. Under no circumstances will I be liable for any loss or damage arising from loss of data or profits arising our of or in connection with the use of this website. I reserve the right to change the focus of my blog.