What is Microfinance: A View from the Field

They were village women in braids, highland hats and tiny pumps. Some even had babies slung to their backs. But they all made their way about the makeshift soccer pitch at pace, kicking around a half-deflated ball. We -- of hiking shoes, branded outdoor clothing and little to weigh us down – were getting our butts kicked.We had just come from a mountaintop … [Read more...]

Curiosity Begins At Home

People travel to faraway places to watch, in fascination, the kind of people they ignore at home. -- Dagobert D. RunesWhy is it that so many people reserve their curiosity for new and enlightening experiences on the road while they take for granted similar opportunities just because they happen at home? … [Read more...]

TBEX ’10: Where Travel Blogging Meets Speed Dating

This weekend, Audrey and I will be shaking hands and kissing babies, schmoozing and pressing flesh at a meet-and-greet with the well-traveled. Those of you in the circle know it as TBEX. To those of you outside the world of travel blogging -- yes, Virginia, there really is such a thing -- it's the Travel Blog Exchange conference.As we dropped in on PREBEX, an ad … [Read more...]

Living Outside Your Comfort Zone

outside comfort zone

Go beyond what makes you comfortable. Open yourself to ideas, events, relationships that make you uncomfortable. Travel places where you know no one. Learn another language. Create art, even though you're not an artist. Argue with people. Fall down. Get up. Read books, all sorts of books. -- Juan Williams of NPR during his commencement speech at Whitman … [Read more...]

Gross Eats, Fearless Leaps and Lemonade Stands: Kids Being Kids [Audio Slideshow]

Ah, kids these days. The list runs long of their digital addictions: texting, gadgets, Facebook, internet, and video games. But during our visit to the U.S., we bore witness to a few fleeting moments that reaffirmed that kids are still kids.That is to say, kids as we knew them: little girls leveraging the lemonade-stand model to raise money for an afternoon … [Read more...]