Sunday, February 6, 2011

Montage Monday: Friends Around the World

Friends are some of the greatest things in this wonderful world. Unfortunately, I haven't seen some of my best friends in over two years since I started traveling around the world. Luckily for me, I've been able to run into a few random friends in the most unexpected places. This Montage Monday, I celebrate my friends and the ease in which travel has allowed me to maintain my far-off friendships!

Andi and I shopping for bangle bracelets in Jaipur, India

Andi (yes, THAT Andi of My Beautiful Adventures) and I met each other in New York City. Every meeting was always too brief, every conversation just a bit too short. Nonetheless, we had a lot in common and grew our friendship through email even after we both moved away from New York. Fast forward two years and we both just happened to be traveling in India at the same time. Andi and I planned to meet for an afternoon in Jaipur, and just like old times, spent not enough time walking around the fabulous "Pink City", drinking Indian chai and shopping for bangle bracelets.

Matteo and I enjoying the view in Copenhagen
Matteo and I met in New York City for an AMAZING summer of fun in 2007. Honestly, that summer was one of the best summers of my life and a big part of that was the great friendship I had with dear, silly, heavy-Italian accented Matteo. After his work project took Matteo back to Italy, we kept in touch with hand-written, snail-mail letters for two years. I had the opportunity to travel for a week to Copenhagen and Stockholm in 2009 and invited Matteo to come along. He agreed and we had a fun week of catching up in person, sight-seeing in two fabulous cities neither one of us had ever been to before and just laughing our silly heads off.

Shoko and I enjoying Turkish çay at the "secret" cafe in Istanbul
Shoko, another good friend that I met in New York City, was just wrapping up her own European trip and stopped into Istanbul literally days after I moved there in 2009 for a few days of discovering the city with me. We got lost in Beyoğlu, ate fresh fish in Sariyer Fish Market, took a ferry up the Bosphorus and shared many a cup of strong Turkish çay in a "secret" rooftop restaurant that offered a stunning panorama of Istanbul. I'm so glad I got to discover so much of Istanbul with Shoko because a lot of our discoveries became some of my favorite places to go during the seven months I lived there!

Delirious from slight altitude sickness in Cuzco, Peru with Joe
Joe and I were friends in New York City and basically saw each other in a crowded bar every Thursday night. We had great chats but that was pretty much the extent of our friendship until realized that we had both independently booked a trip to Peru for the same time! I met with Joe in Cuzco for a couple of days of sight-seeing, one horrific dinner where we tried cuy, which is roasted guinea pig, and one drunken afternoon that resulted in me nearly breaking my own nose. Honestly, it's always an adventure every time I'm with Joe and I wonder when the next time I'll run into Joe will be and where in the world it will take place!

Exploring Bangkok's Royal Palace with Judith
Judith couchsurfed with me back in 2008 when I was still living in New York City. We became immediate friends, keep in touch regularly and travel together every year. In 2010, Judith came out to Thailand and Cambodia to travel with me for a month of sunshine, sweat, long and bumpy bus rides, ancient ruins, motorcycle accidents, royal palaces, leech-infested hikes and delicious street food. In 2011, Judith is planning to make a stop in Hong Kong to visit me while she's on her own RTW trip. Exciting!

Have you ever had the chance to meet a friend while traveling? Where did you meet and what did you do?

© Connie Hum 2011


  1. Great topic! I've met some friends on my travels too... I met one in Montevideo we went to have a lovely dinner and maybe too many pisco sawers. It was a great night.
    Also met in HK - we both started working at the same company (and we didn't knew!)
    The last one I met was a friend I had known for a couple of years, from when we both did an internship in Zurich. We had lost contact, but run into each other at London's Borough Market !!! We obviously had a pint and some meat to celebrate reunion :)

  2. @Katherina I love when you run into the most random people at the least expected places! It's hard to spot someone in Burrough Market so good for you two that you did and got to catch up over a pint!

  3. I love this post! Such heartwarming stories that put a smile to my face! I have had my share of meeting up friends abroad too, namely in Melbourne and Shanghai, and both of the times, we always left with heavy hearts!

  4. @iamthewitch Thanks! Some of my best travel memories are the ones where I met up with friends. And I agree, it sure is hard to say bye to friends!

  5. One of the best parts of being in India was seeing you, just wish we would have had more time together AND found bracelets. I love how you said THAT Andi hahahaha. Too cute! Miss you love. :)

  6. @Andi of My Beautiful Adventures Girl, you get around in the blog world! Of course I had to say THAT Andi! And yes, Jaipur was a good afternoon for me too!

  7. No, not yet. But we can't wait! :) There are some peeps I've 'met' through the blog that I'd like to meet in persons and we just might be able to arrange it in South America.

  8. hey what happened to grenada?? i was living there at the time, not really traveling but you did come to visit me! ;)

  9. Every trip! That's what I miss the most about CouchSurfing (I don't do it anymore, as 90% of my travel is for work; the other 10% to visit friends or family): the ability to make instant new friends from different countries and cultures.

  10. So nice, you're right, the people you meet are the best part of traveling. I just got back from Jaipur, I loved it there, I just wish I had more time to spend hanging around the city!

  11. @Jack and Jill Travel The World Isn't it a wonder how much better life can be through the advances of technology? I hope you get to meet some bloggers on the road!

    @milania dela cruz, md. I know, I know! My laptop crashed awhile back and my photos from Grenada were lost with it! Thank goodness I saved it on an external drive!

    @Camels & Chocolate It's true, another great thing about travel is the new friends you make along the way. In fact, my next Montage Monday is going to feature the friends I've made abroad!

    @AngelaCorrias I find that my most memorable travel experiences are the ones that I shared with others. Jaipur is lovely!

  12. We love meeting other travelers abroad. So far, our count is that we've met 5 other travel bloggers abroad . . . but hopefully, we'll meet many more in the next few years.

  13. @Akila Five is a pretty impressive number!

  14. Lovely post! We've 'met' quite a few people through doing the blog - a side of it we just didn't expect and it's been great. We've met Anil (author of Foxnomad) in person as he's staying in Fethiye for a few months. We're going to miss him and his wife when they move on later this year!!
    Hoping to meet more people soon. :)
    Facebook has been my lifeline for keeping in touch with friends back in the UK.

  15. @Julia Honestly, technology has made friendship such an easier thing to maintain! I Skype with friends and family at least every 2 weeks, email and Facebook keep me connected with everyone everywhere and Twitter's helping me make new connections everyday! I love technology!!!

  16. I was lucky enough to meet up with a bunch of my friends that I met in Australia in Amsterdam for New Year 2010 and my Scottish friend for a week in Barcelona! I hope that on my next set of travels I can meet up with lots of other friends!

    BTW, how did you break your own nose?! OUCH!

  17. How wonderful to meet up with dear friends on your travels! I love doing that. :-) I've met up with folks in the Balkans and Italy, Germany and Holland, Australia and New Zealand. Each person made that place extra special for me. :-)

  18. @Annie Those are some pretty random but awesome connections you made while traveling! The breaking my own nose story will have to wait...Perhaps a future post!

    @RamblingTart You've had a lot of friend around the world meet-ups! That's fantastic!

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