Losing Bourdain

documentary, Florida, food, geek, italy, mexico, musings, new mexico, Scotland, Travel

I started watching Anthony Bourdain in No Reservations when I was a teenager. He had a wit about him, and an elegant but no nonsense means of writing about the world. He sucked me into his journeys in Ireland or Kenya and he did everything from drinking cow’s blood in Kenya to vegetarian dishes in India with humor, grace, and intelligence.

Bourdain moved through the world as something of an enigma. He was fully engaged with his location, yet he had a distance, a perspective, an observer’s mind as he met people and filmed a story. He existed in and out of the scene all at once, which made for a compelling look into his mind and craft.

Sure, he condemned vegetarians and Colorado, both which are near to my heart, but I forgave the grumpy uncle figure that could WRITE.

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He could WRITE. Bourdain pieced together vignettes that made the viewer stop and think, or day dream, or question their perspective on the world. He spun tales and myths and legend on his own that no one dared question. They were eloquent and smart, thick with descriptors and layers of thought and depth that many of his peers could never match.

I loved watching Bourdain in his element, elbows deep in meat and alcohol, talking with a local chef about the importance of animal innards to make distinct flavors and dishes. Bourdain was a compelling force, a person that could not be tamed or cut down, he just existed, and he shared with the world what that looked like.

“Travel changes you. As you move through this life and this world you change things slightly, you leave marks behind, however small. And in return, life—and travel—leaves marks on you.” 

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Travel Inspiration Shows 2018

documentary, food, geek, Travel

While having down time, I often seek out some great travel inspiration (travelspiration) via shows. Often Netflix is my new favorite land of travel shows that offer an intense, personal, and inspiring reflection on the world.

Here is my list of what you should watch to learn more on the world around you.

For Foodie Travelers

It should be a given, but chef’s table is an awesome way to see what the top restaurants in the world offer. I am quite fond of what I consider the more obscure places that reflect a deep and rich cultural identity such as Central and Gaggan.

Weird Food Lovers

The travel channel loves cornering the market on this, but between Anthony Bourdain and Andrew Zimmern, there are dozens of shows to watch on the oddities and snacks that exist in the world.

Hotel Lovers

My absolute favorite one from the last few years, and one I binged in 24 hours was Amazing Hotels: Life Beyond the Lobby. This fantastic show did more than just show where you can stay and what is up for offer. This well-planned, and elegantly executed show delved deep into what it takes to make a hotel work. It also questioned the ethics, social, and economic impact of these global locations. This paired with fantastic shots, enjoyable and informed hosts, created a wonderful show for information and inspiration.

For Those that Love Cultural Reflection

Even if Bourdain is an old fart that complains about vegetarians, I do love his writing style. This amazing writing and ability of this chef turned travel journalist offers an enjoyable look at the world. In Parts Unknown, I especially enjoy the episodes that visit places that have been forgotten or are only now being discovered. 

For the Spiritual Travelers

Believer was a phenomenal look at religions around the globe. Regardless of the politics of Reza Aslan, he’s a great researcher and writer. As a researcher and professor of theology, his books and media works show a truly in depth glance at the systems of belief around us. See the few episodes that were released, because they are really great. 

Travelers that Love to Laugh

My house is one that loves to laugh, so An Idiot Abroad is the best option for my husband and I to sit, and just die laughing at. The show matches wit, with the goofiness of a candid camera show, and just attempts to torture the said “idiot”. Ricky Gervais is one of the mad men behind the scenes, so you know it was a level of humor that can’t be beat.

Happy Travels, even from the couch 😉

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