It’s time to meet one JuanderTraveler who brings backpacking to a different level. Not every 23 year old, fresh out of university, gets to travel around the world for 183 days. Now meet Richard Young who is on an exciting journey around the globe to experience what the world has to offer. His prime motivation for embarking on this sojourn: learn every nation’s culture.
In college, Richard caught the political bug and majored in political science from the Ohio State University. His memorable experience was working on healthcare reform in the U.S. House of Representatives. He has also interned at the US Senate, Ohio House of Representatives, The Ohio State University Medical Center, and the Prince of Wales Hospital.
Richard is obviously now on a much-deserved break before he goes back to schooling again later this year. He will study healthcare management at the University of Southern California as a Dean’s Merit Scholar.
He practically saved up for this six-month round-the-world trip since he got into college and spent a year planning everything: from where to stay and what food to eat to learning some basic foreign language that would bring him far. 183 days may not be enough to cover the world, but expect the young (no pun intended) Richard to make the most out of his adventure.
Richard chronicles his backpacking journey on his blog site http://www.borntobackpack.net and you can also follow him on Twitter @borntobackpack. Know more about Richard’s traveling self. 🙂
What do you remember most of your first trip abroad? Eating delicious, authentic cuisines.
What won’t you leave home without? My hybrid spork (a foon is a hybrid form of cutlery taking the form of a spoon-like shallow scoop with three or four fork tines, says Wikipedia).
How do you pass time at airports? Talk with random people about life in general.
Who is your ideal traveling companion? A spontaneous companion who enjoys life even during messy situations.
Describe your most memorable trip? I was sun burnt, itchy, hungry, tired and lacked enough local money to pay for a hotel near the airport and both credit and debit cards stopped working, so I slept outside on the compounds of the airport. But benevolent Filipinos who owned the airport canteen offered me to stay inside the restaurant’s bungalow and served me hot coffee and authentic Filipino breakfast the next morning before my flight back to Manila. I took a picture with my “Angel” before I left.
What is the best travel advice you were ever given? Drink plenty of water.
What is the best advice you would give to a traveler now? Drink plenty of water and eat an abundant of food rich in fiber.
What is the strangest thing you have done on a trip? Showering with lizards in my hostel in Siem Reap, Cambodia.
Name an event anywhere in the world you would like to participate in? Holi in India (a religious spring festival among Hindus).
What is the worst souvenir you have ever brought back from a trip? Traditional wooden figure from Beijing.
Name a city you have never visited but would like to someday. Antananarivo (the capital city of Madagascar).
Name a country you wish to explore. Not really a country, but it would have to be Antarctica.
What would you say is the best part of travel? Danger.
What would you say then is the worst part of travel? Relaxing.
If you could reside anywhere in the world aside from your country where would it be? Singapore.
- The Q & A part was inspired by The Philippine Star’s interview with Mr. Jaime Laya, culture champ, traveler extraordinaire. Mr. Laya was once a Governor of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas and is one of the board of trustees of the Cultural Center of the Philippines.
- All photographs courtesy of Richard Young.