Travel Blog of the Week: If Lost, Return to Sender

Riding Out The Economy was spent documenting the misadventures we had touring and working in South East Asia (with a bit of riding motorbikes) and couldn’t help but share one of our new favorite bloggers as he goes about doing just that. Enter Morgan of If Lost, Return to Sender. His blog reminds us a bit of how this all started and we encourage you head over to his blog and read through his adventures.

Tell me about yourself and this project you’ve started.

Well to start, I’m kind of lazy and tempted to copy my OkCupid/Online Dating “about you” section for this but because you, writers of “Riding Out the Economy,” asked I’ll devote a little extra time for you all.

I am a 25 year old Right Brained Left Brained nomad. I toggle the line… not so gracefully at times… between Corporate Yuppie and ADHD Creative. This fall I will be returning to school to pursue my MBA at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University outside of Chicago. Prior to school I am taking two months to travel through SE Asia by myself to expand my perspective and collect my thoughts.

To document the experience abroad for my friends and family back home….and for myself….I created “If Lost, Return to Sender.” It is a blog focused on showcasing Stories and Confessions from my travels. Do not expect to find advice or tips for any particular city, I like to focus on illustrating the personal development that travelers undergo.

What motivates you to do this?

…The blog’s traffic count… lol.

In all seriousness, it’s the idea that those back home enjoy hearing my stories and thoughts from my time abroad. Before I left for the trip, I started reading a book called Story. It is essentially is a guide to how to craft compelling tales. I can’t say that I got too far into reading it but what I loved at the start of it was how it described the importance of a narrative. Storytelling is an art form and the most compelling tool you can use in your day to day. Stories have the power to help us build empathy, broaden our perspective and find solace in the fact that everyone has their own shit that they are dealing with.

The idea that my stories on the blog may awaken some type of feeling in the readers of “Return to Sender” is absolutely amazing. I hope my recounting of the days and nights with fellow travelers inspire the readers to get lost, question what you know and  commit to living THIS life.

What got you into blogging?

My Mom is kind of a pain in the ass when I travel to be honest. Love her but she’s a pain. She wants to know every detail and to avoid the interrogation upon arriving home from the airport groggy and jetlagged. That may sound bad but seriously my dad and her could be described as professional interrogators. So when I studied abroad in Barcelona I decided to blog in order to document every detail so that I could minimize the interrogation and allow for more of a conversation once I was back. It failed. But what I did discover was that I loved writing down the stories from my times abroad. There was something fun in figuring out how to characterize in writing everyone I had met. It was a creative outlet. I’m kind of addicted to it.

We see you’re in Bangkok. Why did you choose Thailand?

I chose Thailand because I had already done an extended “Backpacking” trip through Europe. I figured I needed to do something  a little farther out of my comfort zone. I also needed some where that the US dollar would go along way. That narrowed it down to SE Asia and South America. SE Asia wasn’t in winter and so I had my selection made. There really wasn’t much thought in the decision.

Where is the one place you want to go and who would you go with?

There really isn’t one place I want to go but there is one thing that I would like to do. I’d like to hand my credit card over to a travel agent, friend or flight attendant and have them send me some where.

What advice would you give to someone getting on an international flight?

I would tell them to consciously own every decision for what they will do with their time and ultimately talk to people. We live in a bubble in our towns at home. Travel offers the unique time for people to interact with so many different cultures outside the context of their own culture. The rules to friendship and meeting people are different, take advantage of this.

What is the best things to happen to you so far?

The best thing to happen so far in this trip has been meeting so many brilliant people. I desperately needed a change up from my day to day at home. The stresses from family, work and life had taken their toll. Hearing the personal back stories and shared experiences from my fellow travelers has been therapeutic. I am so happy I encountered them and am excited for you to meet them in Return to Sender.

What is the worst thing that has happened to you on the road?

Nothing bad has really happened yet to be honest. There was a brief hiccup with a scuba diving course I had planned on taking but it all worked out for the best. I don’t really have any expectations for this trip so it’s hard to have any let downs.

Steven Seagal, Chuck Norris, Sean Connery, Jean Claude Van Damme, or Bruce Willis?

Sean Connery hands down. Can’t beat the Scottish accent.

What are your plans for the not so distant future?

I think I’m going to Vietnam on the 24th, then to Cambodia and then back to Vietnam. No clue really though.