[Photo Journal] Springtime in NYC! A trip to the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens and High Line Park

Spring might be the best season in New York City, but it might also be the shortest. Spring in New York is all about taking advantage of the moment. New Yorkers joke that it lasts about 2 weeks before summer takes over, with the humidity and heat that comes with the harsher season.

But New Yorkers know that this time is precious, so it’s a happy time for all. We get to shed our winter layers, and enjoy some sunshine. Even when the sun isn’t shining, it’s still quite pleasant in the city. I went to see the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens cherry blossoms in bloom. I also ventured a bit along the High Line Park!

High Line Park in spring Standard Hotel

Spring at the High Line Park

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Day trips from NYC: Kaaterskill Falls hike

I have a confession to make. I don’t do many outdoorsy things in New York. Besides playing ultimate, I spend most of my leisure time doing things indoors. Sometimes I’ll go to the park, especially if it is with my niece, but for the most part I stay inside.

That means I haven’t even begun to do much hiking in my home state. But luckily, my sister’s friend drove us up to the Catskills a few weekends ago and we did a short hike to the tallest two tiered waterfall in the area. This is the Kaaterskill Falls hike!

Kaaterskill Falls upper tier

That’s my sister gazing up at the waterfall

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[Photo Journal] A must visit place of history: the Lion Rock Fortress of Sigiriya, Sri Lanka

The cultural triangle is one of the must tour areas of Sri Lanka. Within that, the Lion Rock Fortress in Sigiriya is the must see place of all must see places.

A large rock jutting out in the landscape, there was an old palace at the top where the king lived in ages past. It makes you think about what kinds of secrets must lay hidden in the rock. This is the “Eighth wonder of the world.”

The Lion Rock from the front

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Pre-tryout nerves and how travel has made me feel (almost) invincible!

This weekend marks the start of the tryout season for club teams in my sport of ultimate. Commonly known as ultimate Frisbee (but for trademark reasons officially “ultimate”), this is a pretty intense sport that has dreams of someday being a part of the Olympics.

Featuring full field 7 on 7 gameplay, this is the sport I’ve played for nearly 16 years now. Time and experience doesn’t mean I’m spared from nerves and butterflies, but if I can travel the world solo, then I can do this!

At the top of Lion Rock Fortress in Sigiriya Sri Lanka

Me at the top of Lion Rock Fortress in Sigiriya, Sri Lanka

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Lessons from living in 3 of the most expensive cities in the world

Sometimes where you live determines the standard of living you can afford. It can be a harsh reality, or something you deal with and plan for.

Over the last 5 years, I’ve lived in 3 of the most expensive cities in the world: New York, Singapore and London. Although salaries are generally higher in these cities to match the cost of living, if you are a poor student like me then you still need to be a bit careful with your money. Here’s what I learned from living in some of the most notoriously money-sucking cities of the world.

Snow covered Riverside Park in New York City

Snow covered Riverside Park in New York City

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On living at home into my thirties

I’ve been home in New York City for about three full weeks now. Home as in the hometown I grew up in, but also home as in with my parents in the apartment I grew up in. Although I’m living at home and in my thirties now, I can’t think of anywhere else I’d rather be. I haven’t gone completely insane yet, but I might be reaching my limit. There are some cons, but the pros outweigh them by far!

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I got home in time for a few snow storms in New York!

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I’m bringing peanut butter next time. How I ate low FODMAPs on the road!

Eating while on the road can be tricky if you want to try to eat healthily. It might be even harder to stick to some dietary restrictions. I started low FODMAPs in early 2016, and it has helped me with anxiety, bloating, and other related health problems. I knew that traveling while avoiding certain foods would be difficult, but I had a general plan going into it.

My gut issues started in 2012, after have a few incidents where I needed to take antibiotics (one of which may have been Lyme disease). I didn’t really understand what was happening to my body, or what the other symptoms were such as fatigue and brain fog. Eventually, I stumbled upon the nutritional research on FODMAPs.

Fish meal in Mirissa Beach, Sri Lanka

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