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002 : travel : places I have been, plus some food

plane wing at sunrise by A.E. Graves

When I donate blood or platelets, I need to list the countries I've visited during the last twelve months.

This has been complicated in recent years.

In 2013, I began a "ten month rotation" on a special, global project for my employer. The project required visiting my employer's headquarters in Switzerland, and various regional offices around Europe. Ultimately, my peculiar professional skill set allowed me to continue taking on new roles during the rotation, which ultimately lasted FIVE YEARS. I went from being the sort of person who had a passport with two countries' stamps, to one where I began to run out of pages. Each time I've donated blood or platelets, I've had to look up my most recent list on my phone. My intake coordinators have been pleased that I wasn't at risk for malaria or ebola, but it was novel to even NEED to keep a list.

My life hasn't historically been like this. I love to travel, but have always paid for my own travel, and the combination of savings to travel and time off have rarely aligned well for me. And then.... THIS. While I first just hurried from meetings at my local office to meetings in CH, I eventually realized that I could take weekend (or longer) trips coming or going, if I planned correctly (and could persuade my colleagues to stop assuming I could run workshops immediately after international meetings!). Also, I accrued miles to travel on my own in my imaginary time off! :)

I'm still processing these remarkable travel experiences...

Countries I have visited

(excluding the U.S., since I live there; recent additions are indicated by year in parenthesis; links to selected photo albums are provided here and there):

Austria (2015) (pleasure travel)

I took a bus to Vienna from Budapest, after all the train tickets sold out. A few hours of driving through lush Hungarian fields was relaxing, though it was strange later to recognize that road during the refugee crisis, where thousands of people walked that same route.

2015.07 Vienna, Austria

65 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

Belgium (2014) (pleasure travel)

I decided to stop just flying over Belgium, and actually land there for a cloudy, and sometimes rainy, weekend.

2014.07 Brussels, Belgium

58 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

Belize (pleasure travel)

This was a pre-digital trip. I'll post something when the photos resurface. (Of course there were photos! With my Nikon F film camera.)

Canada (2003ish for pleasure, 2018 for business)

I visited Vancouver and its surrounding areas for fun, and visited Mississauga for business, with evenings and a stray afternoon in Toronto for fun.

2018.04 Toronto, Canada

33 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

Czechia / Czech Republic (2017)(pleasure travel)

A weekend with my delightful friend CM brightened up a long business trip filled with meetings elsewhere in Europe.

2017.08 Prague, Czech Republic

57 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

Denmark (2016) (pleasure travel)

I had wanted to visit for so long, and finally took a proper vacation to do so, as part of a three country tour. I'm so glad I did!

2016.10 Copenhagen, Denmark

79 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

France (multiple years) (both business and pleasure travel)

This most recent trip included a delightful weekend eating at many wonderful vegan/vegetarian restaurants with my friend CM, plus a week of additional adventures at the end of a business trip, and the beginning of a sabbatical.

2018.08 Paris and Versaille, France

63 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

Germany (multiple years) (both business and pleasure travel)

Business travel took me to Mannheim and Grenzach; I visited Berlin, Heidelberg (with fun coworkers!), and Frankfurt (with CM) for fun. (CM objected to Frankfurt, but it was directly between the two of us, so it was CONVENIENT.)

2016.10 Berlin, Germany

57 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

2018.03 Frankfurt, Germany

42 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

2016.03 Heidelberg, Germany

18 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

2016.03 Mannheim, Germany

21 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves


This was also very pre-digital, and part of the trip to Belize.

Hungary (3x) (business travel)

The farthest east I've traveled from home (excluding Asia, because I travel WEST from home to get there!) A spectacular city which charmed me completely. I can see why some of my colleagues immediately wanted to move there! The Hungarian language is a challenge, however.

2015.04-05 Budapest, Hungary

54 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

2015.07 Budapest, Hungary

41 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

2016.12 Budapest, Hungary

23 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

Iceland (2016) (pleasure travel)

YEARS after planning to go, and having a friend follow my plan and tease me about it, I finally went as a side trip from Germany. It was the dramatic landscape I had dreamed of! I just wish I'd had a better winter coat.

2016.03 Iceland

70 new photos · Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

Japan (1992 and 2008) (employment-themed)

I 1992 I went to Japan with a plan to teach English (and a vaguely worded job offer), and then I went in 2008 to translate and manage logistics for someone else for their work, but my direct employers didn't pay for it, so it is hard to categorize. Both trips were visually stunning and arduous.

1992 Japan Travelogue

In 1992, I took my first ever trip out of the United States, to visit a country I had become obsessed with: Japan. I had high hopes for the visit: I planned to teach English in Japan, learn Japanese, and live there for a year or more.

Under Autumn Clouds

In 2008, I visited Kyoto again after a 16 year absence. Kyoto is a remarkably beautiful city, filled with both modern and ancient places. This is a collection of my favorite details from the ancient side.

Call Me volume 3

Volume 3 of "Call Me" continues AEG's collection of EVERY unedited iPhone photo taken, photo-diary style. Set entirely in Japan, it includes photographs of fellow tourists taking photos, meal sets, train stations, hotel rooms, and other images that are concerned more with the experience of traveling in Japan than with the Japanese traditional design elements that dominated "Under Autumn Clouds" (a larger format book also available at Blurb by the author).

Luxembourg (2014) (travel-travel)

I had no sightseeing, but my train broke there, so I did some unplanned walking.


I wrote an entire on-line book about this.

South Korea (2018) (pleasure travel)

I've loved Korean contemporary art and design for years, so it has been calling to me! These are photos from a weekend in Seoul, part of my first trip to Korea.

2018.11 Seoul, Korea

77 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

Sweden (2013, 2014, 2016) (pleasure travel)

I have wonderful photographer/artist friends living in Stockholm!

2013.06 Stockholm and Utö, Sweden

76 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

2014.05 Uppsala, Sweden

28 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

2014.05 Stockholm, Sweden

36 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

2016.10-11 Stockholm, Sweden

55 photos added to shared album

Switzerland (14x) (business travel)

I worked in Basel, but was able to get out of town by train during or after my multi-week business trips. (I've written about the experience of being there elsewhere within the "yes" collection of posts - check those out!)

2013.08 Basel, Switzerland

96 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

2013.08 Bern, Switzerland

38 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

2013.09 Basel, Switzerland (buildings)

33 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

2013.09 Z¨rich, Switzerland

33 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

2013.10 Hiking in Grindelwald, Switzerland

23 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

2017.09 Lugano (and Gandria), Switzerland

76 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

Taiwan (2018) (pleasure travel)

Everyone I knew who has been to Taipei, for work or pleasure, have LOVED it. They got me excited enough to go!

2018.11 Taipei, Taiwan

80 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves


This is pre-digital (associated with the Nepal trip), and I'll need to find the prints.

United Kingdom (England) (2015, 2017, 2018) (business travel)

My employer had an office up in Welwyn Garden City, and I visited four times. After staying in Hatfield and being unable to book hotels in Welwyn at all, I gave up and commuted in from London, which turned out to be a VERY good idea.

2018.03 London, UK

45 photos - Album by A. Elizabeth Graves

US States I have visited:

US Cities I have lived in and had a fixed mailing address in

(shown in order of preference):

Country/Culture favorite dishes, a list likely to influence my future travel plans

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images and original text Copyright © 2012 - 2019 A. E. Graves

(posted November 29, 2014, refreshed February 2019)

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