Recommend Reads: July Edition

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With three weeks remaining in my time as an ESL teacher here in Nanjing, there’s more than a little navel gazing and daydreaming going on between classes. While I could be out soaking up what little time remains here in China, I’m instead content to piss time away on video games, re-reading Stephen King’s The Dark Tower, watching new TV shows (I just finished Homeland and have started Ray Donovan), and sleeping as much as possible.

I’m also setting myself a pair of Aussie on the Road related travels:

  • Blog every two days for the next 30 days.
  • Read at least five blog posts a day.

In an effort to kill two birds with one stone, I’ve done some reading and thought I’d share my favourite posts with you!

Recommended Reads: July

For your reading pleasure, here are ten of the best for the month of July! Links are in the titles.

#10 – The Most Beautiful Landscapes From Around the WorldJust Chuckin’ It

Maryland lad, Ryan has assembled some travel inspiration to get you through the working week in the form of some gorgeous shots from his recent round the world jaunting. With shots from Haiti to Thailand and New Zealand to Italy, there’s something in this pretty little post for everybody.

He also asks the question: Where is your favourite landscape?

My favourite landscape in China: Jiuzhaigou.
My favourite landscape in China: Jiuzhaigou.

That’s a tough one for me. Jiuzhaigou in China, Angkor Wat in Cambodia, the pine forests and lakes of Northern Idaho, and stormy skies over Australia’s red centre are all contenders in my book.

#9 – My Big Australian Bucket ListA Dangerous Business

Amanda had my attention when she mentioned her bucket list. If there’s one thing I’ve become obsessed with since starting this whole travel blogging lark, it’s been checking items off a bucket list that seems to grow faster than I can check items off it. With my return to Australia imminent, I found this list particularly interesting as I contemplated which Aussie bucket list items I could check off.

I’m pleased to say I’ve checked off a few of Amanda’s Aussie items, but there are a few here for me to consider. It also got me thinking that maybe my own bucket list needs a few more Aussie items.

What would you want to do in Australia?

=#8 – 5 Time Management Tips to Improve Your Life TodayOneStep4Ward

This one’s not so much about travel as it is about self improvement, and that’s a topic very close to my heart. I’ve shared my own stories about dealing with depression before, and one of the key symptoms/causes (it’s a confusing bastard, is the ol’ black dog) is that I find that I procrastinate because I’m depressed, and get more depressed because I’ve not been productive enough.

Johnny Ward is one of the most well traveled and active guys in the blogging community, so when he talks time management, I’m all ears.

I won’t spoil the list for you by discussing it further here, but suffice to say there are some words of wisdom in here I’ll be abiding by both in the next few weeks (where my time is very limited) and when I get back to Australia (where I’ll have an over-abundance of time).

=#8 – 9 Step Plan for Getting Shit DoneyTravel

I’m cheating a bit here by including a second post at #8, but the themes were so similar and both posts were so good that I couldn’t just leave one out!

Much like Johnny, Craig & Kaz of yTravel blog are my travel blogging heroes of mine. These two Aussies manage to juggle constant travel, raising a young family, and being hugely successful bloggers with such ease that it makes me feel bad every time I put off updating the site for another day.

With typical laid back Aussie charm, Caz sums it all up in this post that should inspire even the most die hard procrastinator to get some shit done, as she so eloquently puts it.

#7 – A Prohibition Bar Crawl Through NYCNomadic Matt

The prolific Nomadic Matt hardly needs the link love from my end, but I found this pub crawl post to be one that caught my attention immediately. Like Matt, I’ve got a bit of a fascination with the 1920s and texts such as HBO’s Boardwalk Empire or Australia’s Underbelly: Razor. There’s something glamorous about the suit and hat wearing gangsters, the shady speakeasies, and the entire era for me.

Matt is perhaps best known for blogging about budget travel, but this post is definitely not for those looking to stick to a tight budget. Still, when I’m next in New York City, I’d love to suit up and swing by a few (or all) of the venues he’s listed. It sounds like a helluva night out.

On an entirely less classy pub crawl in Sydney in 2010.
On an entirely less classy pub crawl in Sydney in 2010.

#6 – 20 Things I Love About Chiang MaiD Travels Round

While I’m sad to say our paths didn’t cross while I was in Chiang Mai last year, I’m a big fan of Diana’s site and her tireless work with the elephants she loves so dearly. Couple that with my love of the city she chooses to call home, and I couldn’t resist reading through her list and nodding my head in agreement.

Chiang Mai (which I’ve somehow yet to write about here) is one of my favourite cities in the world, and one I’d sorely love to call home someday. Take a look at her list and tell me you’re not tempted yourself!

#5 – 24 Hours in Portland in PhotosSeattle’s Travels

From a city I’d love to call home someday to a city that feels like home every time I visit; Seattle pays tribute to the Pacific Northwest’s other awesome city with this photolicious post from her day in Portland.

Beer, Voodoo Donuts, and iconic Portland sights are all featured with Seattle’s usual flair for photographic brilliance. This post made me homesick for a city I’ve yet to actually call home!

#4 – Who Are You Writing For? – The Gonzo Traveler

Perhaps better known for being one of the travel blogging world’s more flamboyant and proudly odd denizens, Will writes this wonderfully profound and engaging piece about who it is we – as travel bloggers- are writing for. What is it that drives us to share our lives and experiences on the internet?

This one is probably of more interests to travel bloggers and writers than it is to those contemplating round the world travel, but I believe you can apply a lot of the reasoning from this post to anything you’re passionate about in your life. Go read and tell me what you think.

This picture has nothing to do with the post.
This picture has nothing to do with the post.

#3 – Should You Get Offbeat In Your Travels?One Weird Globe

I first came across Chris as a blogger back when he was one of the most well known travel bloggers in Korea courtesy of Chris in South Korea. His site was a fantastic resource for expats living and teaching in South Korea, and his new site about world travel is no different.

Like Chris (it must be the name), I’m a sucker for getting off the beaten path and avoiding the crowded tourist traps, so this post highlighting the benefits and drawbacks of being a bit adventurous really spoke to me.

#2 – The Unbearable Sadness of TravelingRaising Miro on the Road of Life

Short, sweet, and beautifully poetic in its description – Lainie sums up what she calls the unbearable sadness of traveling wonderfully in this post.

There’s not a one of us who hasn’t experienced what is described in this post at some point in our travels, and I like to think I wouldn’t be living life right if I didn’t experience it again in the future.

#1 – Stop Allowing People’s Negative Behavior in Your LifeReclaiming Your Future

If you haven’t discovered Toni of Reclaiming My Future’s amazing and inspiring new blog about self improvement and being a happier person, consider this your wake up call. Toni is sharing some truly wonderful stories and tips for greater happiness on her new site, and this is one of my favourite posts.

Many of us doubtlessly have negative people in our lives who try to force us to fit into their negative view of the world and of themselves, and I know what a drag it can be to have somebody question your lifestyle because they’re too afraid to live it themselves.

Toni’s post focuses more on day to day negativity than my own specific gripe, but her post has inspired me to address the causes for negativity in my own life.

This #1 spot is more about sharing her entire blog than any one post though, so take the time to browse and get inspired!

Your Say

What have been your favourite posts in the last few weeks? I’d love for you to share a few of the best so I can read them and hopefully share them with others too!

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