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Aug 25, 2008

Step Around the World


Above, the earth as imaged by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.  I like geographic images that don't include political borders.  They let me perceive and notice different things, undistracted by ideas of country or boundary.

That said, I usually make my travel plans on the basis of nationalities, culture, and history.  Here is my list of places-I'm-currently-motivated to see, as an American of Philippine and Indonesian descent.  (Note that countries may belong in multiple categories but are listed only once in which ever category they show up first.  Italics where I've been so far):

For family heritage:

  • Philippines
  • Indonesia
  • China (because you can't find many Indonesians or Filipinos who aren't fractionally Chinese. I think I'm ~1/8th).

Western intellectual and political heritage:

  • Greece
  • Italy
  • Great Britain
  • France
  • Spain
  • Netherlands

Judeo-Christian heritage:

  • Israel
  • Palestine
  • Egypt

Non-western intellectual and spiritual heritage:

  • India
  • Japan
  • Tibet

Relevance to daily US culture and commerce:

  • Canada
  • Mexico
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Venezuela
  • Nigeria

US political and cultural history (war, immigration, other not already listed):

  • Germany
  • Vietnam
  • Russia
  • Ireland
  • West African countries such as Mali, Mauritania, Senegal, Guinea, Sierra Leone, and Ghana
  • S. Korea and N. Korea
  • Iraq
  • Iran
  • Afghanistan
  • Cuba

To see how things could be slightly or very different:

  • Brazil (as my friend Art says, "the US in an alternate history")
  • Ethiopia
  • Papua New Guinea
  • (this list very inexact)

Just because I got interested in them somehow:

  • Georgia
  • Easter Island, Chile

So that's my list so far (minus anything I've forgotten).  I doubt I'll try to reach all of them before my end of days, but a good few and many others not on the list.  Because why not?

I would love to see any of your lists, particularly those of Chap, Barry C., Doc and Claire.


Note: some places that aren't on my priority list, but that I enjoyed visiting anyway (even if so briefly): Denmark, Singapore, Thailand, Honduras, Belgium, Taiwan, Bahamas. 

06:15 PM in Traveling | Permalink


I'm impressed that you've been to Cuba. I remember seeing some old flick on AMC when I was younger, where the dapper fellow whisks away the lovely lady for an evening in Cuba. Though the film was certainly filmed in Hollywood, I've wanted to visit Cuba ever since.

Posted by: ACW | Aug 25, 2008 9:48:38 PM


Posted by: Barry Campbell | Aug 25, 2008 10:23:44 PM

you need to add China to this list --> Relevance to daily US culture and commerce

[Ed. note -- I would have, but it was already included in the "family heritage" category, up top! BTW, my pal Lisa recently introduced me to the expression "HIPS -- hidden in plain sight." :-)]

Posted by: Tim | Aug 28, 2008 11:30:58 PM

wacky that I had Papua New Guinea when I wrote this last month. Last week I met an American who moved there ten years ago. They apparently have next to zero internet.

Posted by: Phil | Sep 6, 2008 11:10:17 PM