2013 Recap – A Year of Discovery

It’s kinda cool to see my friends looking back at the end of the year and seeing how much stuff they actually did! They’ve inspired me to do the same.

It’s been a wild and fun year, and I’m stronger, wiser, more compassionate, and more loving than I was one year ago. The people I’ve met around the world have left me hopeful and optimistic for this world’s future, and am eagerly looking forward to collecting a lifetime of adventures in the company of such amazing individuals.

The highlights listed below only barely scratch the surface of all the amazing things that happened this past year. I’ve been fortunate to enjoy so many unique and happy moments together with so many people, and to include it all would make this long post 10x longer than it is. All I can say is, “thank you” to everyone who’s shared in this adventure called life with me.

Just looked over my calendar and here’s a quick 2013 Recap:

1. Made many incredible new friends all across the globe. ‘THANK YOU’ because you guys inspire and amaze me every day. I’ve learned the differences between people are shallow and surface-level only and we’re more alike then we are different.

CouchSurfing in Hanoi

2. Hosted several great dinner parties, including one at the Long Table in Bangkok for AWESOME location-independent entrepreneurs (need to do many more of these)

Dinner at Long Table Bangkok with entrepreneur friends

3. Met a girl on the other side of the world that I adored and we shared some special times together, even though it didn’t last she and I are still close (equally important)

4. Watched the sun set over the Angkor temples in Siem Reap

Bayon, Cambodia.

5. Got lost exploring Ta Prohm, the labyrinth where Tomb Raider was filmed, and shook hands with a monkey

Monkeys in Siem Reap, Cambodia.

6. Crossed all of Vietnam on a motorbike (about 2,500 km), then sold the motorbike recouping 90% of my investment

Central Vietnam, north of Da Nang.

7. Jammed out with blind musicians at Hoan Kiem lake in Ha Noi

Playing music at Hoan Kiem lake in Ha Noi

8. Chartered a boat through Ha Long bay, a surreal paradise of tens of thousands of limestone cliff islands

Ha Long Bay boat cruise, Vietnam.

9. Sailed the South China Sea, hopping between islands


10. Trained for two months as a Muay Thai boxer in Thailand, 6 intense training sessions a week

11. Climbed to the top of an abandoned skyscraper in Bangkok

Climbing the Sathorn Building in Bangkok

12. Celebrated Songkran in Bangkok, where the streets erupt in a several-day long water fight involving millions of people! perhaps my favorite holiday ever.


13. Hiked to the top of Bukit Bendara

Bukit Bendara, Penang Hill in Malaysia

14. Parasailed above Malaysian islands on the Andaman coast

Parasailing Batu Ferringhi, Penang, Malaysia

15. Became an anime character in Tokyo, and watched the Nihon Grand Sumo tournament


16. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon and back up in a day (a feat not for wimps!), and partied in Lake Havasu for the first time

Colorado river, at the foot of the Grand Canyon.

17. Hiked to the top of the red rock cliffs of Sedona, an incredible place!


18. Partook in the “Pride Parade” in Vancouver

Pride parade in Vancouver!

19. Climbed to the top of the “Grouse Grind” north of Vancouver (also not for wimps!)

Grouse Grind in Vancouver

20. Almost got arrested by Canadian border patrol agents for being “suspicious”

21. Explored the HUGE Washington Park in Portland, perhaps my favorite city park in the world

Washington Park in Portland.

22. Celebrated life with homeless people in San Francisco and homeless musicians in Portland, and drank many brews at summer beer festivals in Portland


23. Rode to the top of the Space Needle in Seattle, “caught” a fish at Pike’s Place market, drank a coffee at the original Starbucks, explored the islands of the Puget Sound

Catching a fish at Pike's Place Market, Seattle!

24. Cycled/Hitchhiked across the state of Northern Baja, California


25. Slept in an abandoned rancho in Mexico in the middle of nowhere (I was scared shitless, but it was a powerful experience)

26. Rock climbed in Mexico’s Catavina desert, a goal I’ve had FOR YEARS but finally got to experience – and it was worth it

Rock climbing in Catavina desert, Baja California, Mexico.

27. CouchSurfed for the first time (thank you to everyone who’s hosted me! Wow, you guys are amazing!), and hosted my first CSers in San Diego

28. Started writing a book, which is 70% finished and getting some great reviews already

29. Learned how to turn defeat into victory – http://on.fb.me/1d7ysMs

30. Picked up several great mentors, including national best-selling author, a rockstar literary agent, the world’s most traveled man, and many more

31. Met my friend and mentor Jared for the first time in SF


32. Raged with some really remarkable friends in San Francisco

33. Completed my first border-to-border cross-country road trip across the US, and drove down the entire coastal route down the California coast for the first time


34. Got featured (and more importantly, my upcoming book) in my first media interview, and been invited to do several more – http://www.delmartimes.net/2013/10/30/del-mar-resident’s-unique-travel-experiences-basis-for-book-on-how-to-‘push-past-your-fears’/

35. All but retired my first business, which turned 4 this year. Starting a business is like entering a marriage and while I’m so thankful for the experience I’ve moved on to start a new business more aligned with my passion and purpose. The prototype of our product is nearing launch, which I’m beyond thrilled for!

36. Spent holidays among family and loved ones


37. Watched the Red Bull air racers and the Thailand national fireworks team light up the night skies over Vancouver, Canada (they had these cool fireworks with smiley faces in them)

Fireworks above Vancouver.

38. Speaking of which, I’ve learned to smile like a Thai this year

39. Strengthened my spiritual practice and found a new life direction

40. Found peace over the death of my father

So, what’s next? Well, only time can tell! I see 2014 as being a big “transitioning” year for me. I’ve really “woken” up these past couple of years and learned much about the true value of each day. And now, I’m just following my heart. We shall see where that leads 🙂

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