And itsabrewtifulworld.com takes a new direction….
The last few months have seen my Eurocentric brewtifulworld completely turned over on its head as I have spent a fair share of time visiting cities around Asia. I have been to Asia plenty of times before and have had many wonderful experiences there, but in the past, I never approached Asia with the same open-minded brewtiful spirit that I give to Europe. I have walked on the Great Wall, had a birthday dinner at the top of the KL Tower, watched a sunset on the beaches of Bali, but I never gave myself completely to these journeys. I saw them as fringe, colorful, cross-off-the-list-only experiences, but I never connected with them on the level of Prague, Munich, Bruges, Salzburg, and all of my favorite places in Europe.
Sometimes it takes certain circumstances in your life to free your mind of the boundaries that you place there in your day-to-day life. A passport and an unrelenting dose of wanderlust are wonderful things. They take you places. But it’s the people you meet along the way that really open up the world. Over the next few posts, I will talk about a lot of great beer bars and breweries among other things in some great cities in Asia that I have visited these last few months. But for me personally, these posts will represent something far more than that. Behind the words are stories and lessons that have impacted my life forever. With every picture that will be posted, there is unseen reflection, hope, love, pain, appreciation, discovery and wonder. To the reader, they may just be travel pictures from some American dude who lives in Belgium. For me, they are life. They are inspiration for the future. It is never about the beer, and anyone thinking that by glancing at the content would be forgiven. It is about being alive, appreciating life, and being grateful. I wish for that to pour out onto the screen with every post I make. I am sure I have achieved varying degrees of success, though sometimes losing sight of the real meaning of my blog. It can be a bear to reach down deep all the time and find the words that adequately describe a travel experience. I hope I am able to give these latest experiences the justice they deserve.
As I write this post, I am planning my final few hours in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam before flying home to Belgium. This brings an end to a journey that includes Cambodia’s Phnom Penh and Siem Reap and Bangkok, Thailand. While my heart will always be planted in Europe, there is a lure here, something magical that reaches out around the world maybe even more so than Europe. Something in the smiles of the people, the food, the hospitality, the spirituality. It would be suboptimal to not leave my heart open to the wonders here, to the connections that I felt on this journey and to the new outlook it has given me. Therefore, I will always give these memories and lessons a copious amount of reflection while seeking to build on them. Asia is now firmly planted in my soul and shall remain there for all time.
For those who dare to read my posts, I take this opportunity to thank you from the bottom of my heart.