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The Poet: A Soleful Shoemaker

In Europe by Mallory3 Comments

My bare feet tapped in anticipation. The rich scent of leather filled my lungs. The stone floor beneath my toes was cold and littered with scraps of leather. I was at Melissinos Art, a colorful Athenian sandal shop tucked in an alley near the famous Monastiraki Square. The world-famous shop is run by Pantelis Melissinos, “The Poet,” a third generation …

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A Week in Crete, Greece

In Europe by Mallory12 Comments

After a week in Amsterdam with my dad, I caught a plane to the island Crete, which is on the complete opposite side of the continent. I can’t help but laugh at my travel route, which is starting to resemble a toddler scribbling on a map of Europe. Random and unpredictable, I love it. I landed in Crete at about …

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A Visit to Amsterdam (The Motherland) with Dad

In Europe by Mallory13 Comments

I just finished a week in Amsterdam with my dad. After two months of traveling solo it was great to see a familiar face, especially the face of a man I love to pieces! My dad was born in Eindhoven and still has a lot of family and friends in Amsterdam that I got the chance to meet. It made …

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In Bruges

In Europe by Mallory13 Comments

Bruges, a small city just a day trip from Brussels, is well known for two rather conflicting images: Image #1: Bruges is a beautiful fairytale city sometimes called Venice of the north. Image #2: Bruges was made famous when Colin Farrell called it a shithole in the movie In Bruges. Since I was only an hour away in Brussels, I …

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Tour of the Old Town of Brussels

In Europe by Mallory4 Comments

Brussels doesn’t set out to make you fall in love with it. The ongoing joke is that most people, especially the ‘eurocrats,’ hate Brussels when they arrive, but learn to love it the longer they stay. Cry when you get here, cry when you go.  In just three days, it’s uniquely muddled characteristics – from the cobblestoned streets with a small-town …

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Getting Schooled by the Germans

In Europe by Mallory14 Comments

My two days in Cologne turned into five after meeting a really fabulous group of Germans. Bjarne (who was an exchange student at my high school) and his roommates hosted me for three days, so I got to eat with the locals, hang with the locals, not pay for the metro like the locals, but mostly just look confused when …

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City Under a City

In Europe by Mallory4 Comments

After learning about the Cold War at Checkpoint Charlie, I was itching for more history. On my last day in Berlin, I did a Berliner Unterwelton Tour, which follows the traces of the Cold War in the underground. After the building of the Berlin Wall, the West German government invested millions in civil defense shelters in preparation for possible nuclear …

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Eau de Cologne, Picasso & an Unexpected Surprise

In Europe by Mallory2 Comments

I arrived in Cologne, Germany after a long and stuffy bus ride from Berlin. Considering the stench I had to endure for seven hours, I was relieved to finally arrive in the city where Eau de Cologne originated. Cologne is best known for the Cathedral Cologne, a beautiful example of Gothic and Neo-Gothic architecture. Outside, the cathedral is a bit …

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Is Travel a “Break” from Life?

In Europe, Thoughts from the Bus by Mallory13 Comments

When I first started telling people about my journey, I heard a lot of this: “Good for you to take a break from life!” “So you’re off to go find yourself, eh?” There is a stereotype that long-term travelers are all wanderers on a journey of self-discovery. Although self-discovery may be a thrilling bi-product, there are many travelers (myself included) …