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I confess I hate Las Vegas. It is not the town for the pragmatic or the vegetarian, so there are two strikes against me right there. However, after recently seeking out Veggie House, I now have a reason to look forward to refueling in the (cultural) desert.
In the ancient tradition of vegetarian Chinese cooking, Veggie House serves some of the best mock meat for miles. Veggie House offers an extensive menu of cruelty-free seafood, beef, and chicken. Enjoy the crispy “beef” and save the sweetfaced cow.
Veggie House is truly a vegetarian oasis in one of the world’s most unrelentingly carnivorous cities. Located in Chinatown, it will also get your uncultured ass off that gawd awful soul-less strip.
Even with humidifiers cranking in almost every room, I still struggle to keep my skin adequately hydrated in the winter. I’m always on the lookout for an amazing moisturizer and this year Atopalm Intensive Moisturizing Cream is my all-around favorite. Sufficiently rich but not overly so, Atopalm Intensive Moisturizing Cream is neutral enough for the face or chapped ballsacks. This versatile product truly heals dry, inflamed areas. I also enjoy that Atopalm is intelligently packaged to pass rigid TSA carry-on regulations, and it isn’t too pricey either.
Wanna know my airplane prayer?
Cradle this plane in your palm. Guide us gently to our destination. Place us down gently. Thank you.
Pathetic, right? Nobody is an Atheist on an airplane.
…Narrate everything. Really, you have to pee, yeah bitch we are standing in the bathroom line. I know. I don’t give a fuck. Hurry up and pee then. I don’t need a narrative of your experience in the restroom. Furthermore, I don’t need a description of the waterfall or the valley. Just shut up and enjoy the moment in silence. …Act like they have never stepped foot in a grocery store. I know the Wal-Mart ain’t all that different where you are from. Stop wandering around mystified taking up the whole fucking aisle contemplating your frozen pizza choice. G-sus.…Let their kids go buck ass wild. Look, I know everybody is on vacation here, but I will whoop your annoying kids’ asses. They are not cute, and I do not give a fuck.…Drive like assholes. It’s one of two things: 1) either you think because you flew in yesterday you own the place and are somehow entitled to ignore traffic laws and common decency; or 2) you are so overwhelmed by the experience you do dumbass shit like come to a DEAD STOP in the middle of the highway to look at whales surfacing off shore. The same rules apply to walking down the sidewalk: stick to the right lane bitch. …Smoke cigarettes everywhere. Like almost every red blooded American teenager, I used to smoke. Then I graduated. Are you really still fucking smoking nasty-ass cigarettes? Not a good look. Just so you know, you look like ignorant fucking trash standing there with your pleated shorts and a Camel dangling from your wrinkly mouth. You are in paradise. Put the cigarettes away.
…Lose their shit. My travel companion loves to throw his shawl around in every new hotel room. When it is time to pack up and go, it takes about a fucking month because his shit is everywhere. I spent at least twenty minutes listening to some dopey Canadians fret about their misplaced passports. We all occasionally lose shit, but if you pack light and keep your possessions close and organized, a lost item is a much less likely probability.…Dress like dorks. Seriously, if I see one more unironic Hawaiian shirt paired with unironic Hawaiian print shorts, I am going to chunder. Some tourists dress like they are trekking Everest when they hardly plan to deviate from a paved path. I understand comfort is king when traveling, but that is no excuse to look like shit. Don’t forget to pack your style. Chances are these outfits will be captured on film.…Complain constantly. On the way over to Hawaii, one of the most geographically isolated land masses in the entire world, the lady next to me was wigging out because the guy in the seat in front of her reclined his chair. This grown-ass woman (in her sixties) fussed, pushed, and kicked this poor guy’s chair until he finally reluctantly returned his seatback to the upright position. If you want to be a raging cunt about leg room then spring for first class bitch. Regardless, I could give a fuck about listening to your spoiled, entitled, whining for an entire pan-oceanic flight.…Ask stupid fucking questions. One summer, I ran a gondola in the mountains and people asked me the dumbest fucking questions you could ever imagine. “Where does this go?” It goes to heaven, asshole. You are in a new place, no one expects you to know everything, but there is this invention called the internet which makes basic information gathering rather simple. Do your research to avoid looking like a complete fucking moron.…Get fucking wasted. I love to party and I can throw down, but I never ever get sloppy. My first night on Kauai, three tequila-soaked dudes got so wasted they were sloshing all around the lobby in a herd of hot mess. One walked right into a sign and smacked his head. One got into a loud argument with the ATM (the ATM totally won). The third loudly slurred at me from across the lobby, “Can you get online?” Not only is this type of behavior pathetic and unattractive, you make a target of yourself for theft, robbery, rape or worse. Don’t leave your dignity or common sense on the mainland.
Each winter, humpback whales come to the warm waters off the coast of Hawaii to breed, birth, and nurture their calves. At one time, perhaps only a thousand thrived, but recent conservation efforts have resulted in a population boom. Now more than twenty thousand whales are thought to take the long journey down from their Alaskan feeding waters to enjoy the Hawaiian channels. There is not really any food for the adult whales in the crystal clear blue waters, so their time in Hawaii is a bit like whale Ramadan.They are literally everywhere this time of year, especially off the coast of Maui. If you want a relatively close look, a boat is best, but you can see them easily from shore. I was practicing yoga on the beach and a few friendly humpbacks came over and waved good morning.With whale watching comes whale tales. Folks just LOVE to talk about their super-close whale encounters. Some of those stories are true, but most are wildly exaggerated. I personally don’t need to ride a whale to feel as if I’ve had the experience. Maintain a respectful distance.
So you’ve heard it before, but it bears repeating, traveling on the Hawaiian Islands is fucking astronomically expensive. Know what else is surprising? The food is consistently mediocre and totally overpriced (You were so RIGHT Annabella!), even for vegetarians.After navigating three different islands over the last 9 days, I’ve picked up a few strategies for cutting culinary costs. In preparing for this trip, I came across a lot of advice. Most of it was useless. My aim here is to offer up some helpful non-obvious information.For instance, one of the most common recommendations I read on the internet before coming to Hawaii is to hit up the COSTCO. If you are rolling a week deep with a family of four, perhaps that is a smart move for you. However, think about whether or not you can really get through COSTCO-size servings before you return home. The tendency is to overbuy and end up wasting. Not a good look. Buy only the essentials in quantities you can use during your trip. You aren’t really saving money if you throw half of it away.Remember as a general rule, in Hawaii nothing comes with anything. Order a veggie burger for $8; don’t expect fries. Realistically expect to pay another $5 for fries. First, decided if you MUST have fries. If the answer is yes, then decide if you need a whole order to yourself. If not, share. Sharing is caring.They also really love “wraps” here, so expect a lot of burrito-shaped foods. Grab a wrap and then buy extras like chips and a drink at a convenience store to avoid the deli-style markup.Make this a vegetarian vacation. You’ll pay more for vegetarian food here than on the mainland – which by the way makes no fucking sense since many of the veggies are grown locally – but vegetarian dishes are still less expensive than anything else on the menu. (Why not try some taro?) Plus, sticking with veggies will keep you looking good in your swimwear and ward off pesky travel constipation. Don’t act like you don’t get backed up bitch.Generally speaking, the exploitative resorts have pretty crappy food served in the least interesting environment. What you are essentially paying for here is a premium on convenience. If the timing or circumstances of your travel require a meal on the property, skirt the ridiculous up-charge on room service by walking your lazy ass down and picking up carry-out from the bar. Skip the “fanciest” restaurant on the property and just stick to the bar and cafe – almost always the food is all coming out of the same kitchen anyway.Let me caution you on the hyperbole-laced shaved ice. I was standing in the grocery store in Waimea looking at postcards when I heard the check-out girl exclaim “Oh No!” A customer passed the fuck out in the check out line. I pulled her up on my lap, got her some water, called her friends, and waited with her until the paramedics arrived. What took her down? Shaved Ice. Poor girl had too much sugar, too much heat, and not enough quality nutrition. After that bad churro took me down at Coachella, I learned my lesson about the overly sweet snacking, especially in the heat. While that $5 shaved ice looks tempting, skip it for a low-glycemic, substantive option.By the way, don’t ever be the dork at the luau. So Fucking Lame. I’m sorry, but I don’t think we can be friends if you attend a rude pig-sacrificing luau.
Mai e `ai
When packing, lay out all the clothes and money you plan to take. Take half the clothes and all the money.
Don’t wear white. Tourists wear white.Learn the local customs or risk looking like a dick. Insure the rental car.
Just because you are on vacation does not mean you’re invincible. Keep your ass out of the riptide.
Make eye contact. Cultivate patience. Don’t pay to park.
If you have a complaint, rather than demand a certain response, empower the person to whom you are complaining to solve the problem. They will often offer you more than you would have asked for in compensation, especially if you learn to complain with kindness.
Frequent hygienically-sound food trucks.
Understand you are a target for crime when traveling. Be prepared to shank a bitch if need be.
Like many of these Demeter Clarc Manners Moments, some of you will be like, “duh”, and some of you will claim you’ve never heard of the custom before. Let’s talk about tipping housekeeping when you stay at a hotel. We all know that for the most part, cleaning up after others is a boring, thankless, and often disgusting job. Why not express gratitude for your housekeeper’s service with a tip?
There are different schools of thought on the best way to tip your housekeeper. I like a daily tip rather than a lump sum offering at the end of the stay. Tipping daily ensures that even if different folks clean my room, each will get a little thank you gratuity. Also, a daily tip ensures no shortage of fresh towels and sample size toiletries, while encouraging staff to sniff the other way if clouds of cannabis start wafting from my room.So how much is right? Well it is all up to what you feel comfortable with, but I would say certainly no less than $1-2 per day and no more than $5 a day, unless the service is nothing short of spectacular and then the sky is the limit. Frankly, in this age of dismally mediocre service, exemplary conduct should be profusely rewarded. What wouldn’t I tip to avoid an encounter with a dubious pube? Don’t even start with the “I don’t have cash” bullshit. It is your OBLIGATION to carry cash while traveling for this very purpose. It is just as important as your ID and suitcase.
For those cheap motherfuckers who never tip, I’m just going to say it straight up – you are showing your ass. Not a good look. Take care of your housekeeper and they will take care of you. Mahalo bitches!