I rented a chalet with two friends in the Swiss Alps for the winter. Veysonnaz was optimal for our price point as a small resort, less posh and pricey than other locations like St. Anton, St. Moritz, Verbier or Zermatt while providing access to the other resorts of the four valles with our season pass, linked by lifts, gondolas and T-bars. In retrospect we picked the perfect location — and house! Being eight hours ahead of my Colorado workplace timezone allowed plenty of time to ski in the morning before returning to Chalet Adele to work the rest of the day; somewhat surprisingly, Chalet Adele turned out to be our favorite part of our Swiss winter – a hot tub, a sauna and a spare bunk room for friends to come visit — ski in and ski out, adjacent to the slopes — and a picturesque, unrivaled view of the surrounding mountains making for truly epic sunrises and sunsets. Great wifi too. So when the snow wasn’t great (and it wasn’t great a lot of January and March) we were quite comfortable working hard and then relaxing in our chalet. My chalet-mate Chris is an accomplished cook and most nights he and Trevor would prepare a […]
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In 1997 I spent the fall semester of my sophomore year of high school attending an American school in Zermatt, Switzerland. Zermatt is the home of the Matterhorn, 29+ 4000 meter+ peaks and beautiful scenery. No cars or trucks are allowed within the town limits and we needed to take a 15 minute train ride from adjacent Täsch to visit, parking our car there for the entirity of our four day visit. With four distinct, active seasons, Zermatt is what I claim to be the prototypical Swiss mountain paradise At the time my semester spent in the Swiss alps was the coolest thing I had done.* Transitioning back to my home in Kansas City afterwards was heart-breaking. I missed waking up beneath the Matterhorn and taking four hour ski breaks in between classes. No sooner had I started up my old life than my old nemesis, Routine, came back with a vengeance. I was being driven to and from school, doing my homework, playing sports, sleeping and repeating. As a teenager it felt like I had few resources with which to direct my own life. I was waiting, forbearing frustration as much as I could, for the tomorrow to arrive when I would have the abilities to do with my […]
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I’ve been terrible at Spanish for an entire year now, starting back in Buenos Aires. Since then I’ve lived in other Spanish-speaking countries: Uruguay, Chile, Colombia, Bolivia, Ecuador — each with distinct dialects, idioms, accents and slang. In an attempt to describe the style of Spanish I speak currently — imagine a three-year-old child speaking broken English utilizing a haphazard, incongruous assortment of accents: Scottish, southern, Boston, and cockney. The child can tell you what he wants or needs and ask simple questions effectively but if asked a question containing a word he hasn’t learned yet (his vocabulary is around 100) he’ll just look at you with cow-eyes and a blank stare of confusion. That’s pretty much where I’m at. While in Spain I added a new verbal weapon with which to assault native Spanish speakers — the fabled Spanish “lisp”. In Barcelona (and apparently much of Spain to my surprise) some consonants, such as “c” are softly pronounced as a “th” turning “gracias” into an audible “grathias”. Let me tell you right now that depending on your level of aggravation, it could drive you nuts. It drove me nuts. Madrid impressed me on account of what I would refer to as its […]
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Brussels, Belgium

by Reid Peryam· February 20, 2017· in Europe, Travel· 0 comments
2017 started out with a quick, 3-day, early-January stop over in Brussels, Belgium. In between work and jet-lag I had enough time to explore and and do recon on a new city and country I had never visited. Brussels struck me as a very walkable, easy-to-navigate and livable city. It’s quite small, quite beautiful and quite expensive, but like the rest of western Europe you get what you pay for — good food, safety, photogenic streets and old architecture. The narrow, curving streets in the city center are lined with all sorts of small, independent restaurants, cafes and boutiques selling anything from artisan goods to comic books. Even the graffiti and street art are of a high order — I spotted a scene depicting TinTin covering an entire building wall, another scene elsewhere was a murder mystery thriller in comic book style. The effect on me, in winter, was a cozy, traditional charm. Belgium is proud of its beer which is served cold, rich, high-alcohol and malty. Delerium Tremens is often rated as one of the best beers in the world in various competitions (the name references the “rapid onset of confusion usually as a result of withdrawal from alcohol”). Unfortunately I have a […]
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South Africa has captured my imagination for almost 15 years. After spending a month in New Zealand South Africa seemed a natural follow up as an English-speaking, far away destination with natural intrigue and not too many people. Much like New Zealand, South Africa seemed mysterious for its reclusive nature which keeps it out of the limelight most of the time; naturally I had some questions. How did there come to be white people in Africa? How is it that black people speak this weird version of Dutch? People surf alongside sharks? Is everyone racist and/or angry about that apartheid thing? I arrived with a huge blank slate upon which to color recolor my conceptualization. And I’m happy to say I have. I’ve answered these questions for myself along with more; I learned my three Bs: what biltong is, who my bruhs (pronounced “broos”) are and what a braai is. Additionally I’m happy to report that I can distinguishing which accent belongs to a Johannesburger (51% success rate!) and why I never want to be in Cape Town during the summer. I’m pretty much an expert in everything. There is an exhausting amount to do around Cape Town, and I did a lot of things during […]
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I broke off from Cape Town, South Africa for nine days to head to Tanzania to climb the highest mountain in Africa, Mt. Kilimanjaro. Thanksgiving afforded a great opportunity for the adventure on account of two contiguous holidays free from work (the only time all year!) and these days abut a weekend. My friend Pete flew over from the states to join me for the climb. I chose the Lemosho route for us — 65 kilometers to the summit and down. After it was over my watch said we had walked over 136,000 steps over the 6 days – ascending from 2,100 meters to 5,895 meters (19,341 feet) at Uhuru peak and then down to 1,800 meters for departure. I had planned to do it in 8 days in order to have the best chance of assuring a successful summit – as many people are afflicted with altitude sickness on account of being unable to acclimate to the high altitude in short time frames (the classic and most popular Kilimanjaro trek route, Marangu,  is 4 days by comparison). Peter ended up being unable to accommodate eight days with his schedule so we decided to do it in seven. By the time it was over we […]
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Casablanca, Morocco

by Reid Peryam· October 19, 2016· in Africa, Travel· 0 comments
After Croatia, Germany, the United States, Ecuador and Colombia I was getting a little uncomfortable being so comfortable. Comfort (and europe) is a dangerous thing — before long I risk being content being content. But really I prefer to be a little uncomfortable especially within the context of travel. So it was time to get a little dirty in Morocco and remind myself what it’s like to visit a place that is famous for being dirty. It was just a short, three day visit to Casablanca and thank god I didn’t stay any longer. This was just a reconnaissance trip to scout out the vibe ans determine if I want to return for a more thorough exploration of other cities (Fez, Rabat, Marrakesh, Chefchaouen); admittedly three days in Casablanca do a disservice to these others, more tourist-friendly cities. That being said I think Morocco will be best done during a vacation where freedom to explore and wander isn’t reigned by obligations for accessible internet (Skype and many online messaging services are blocked by many ISPs) or food. I met multiple tourists who shared stories of wonderful vacations and excursions throughout the country that I’m sure I would really love. The issue with […]
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Split, Croatia

by Reid Peryam· October 15, 2016· in Europe, Travel· 0 comments
Fourteen months ago I was in Cavtat, Croatia for a month and it was pretty good; smooth, 72 degree Adriatic sea water for morning swims, grilled octopus lunches sunsets the color of the Rosé I was drinking. My excuse time was that I needed to flee the Schengan zone in order to return this winter to Switzerland (stay tuned); Split was perfect because my friends recently opened a co-working space there and I wanted to go work from it. So I booked a flight from Munich and an AirBnb just north of Old Town for six nights. Split is a old town on the shore of the Adriatic sea. It’s much larger and busier than Cavtat – but during the Autumn most of us tourists aren’t around because the weather isn’t as beachy. For me this was ideal– as a travel hipster I enjoy visiting places in off-peak season and it was easier to get work done in the cooler, cloudier weather. I was still able to explore and even meet a lot of new friends at WIP, the co-working space I worked from. Highlights included learning to play spike ball – a sport my friend Travis taught me, showing new friends […]
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Munich, Germany

by Reid Peryam· October 08, 2016· in Europe, Travel· 0 comments
Last year I was in Munich for 10 days during Oktoberfest and absolutely loved it. I wanted to come back this year to experience more of Bavaria. When I was in Santiago I reserved an AirBnb across the street from the wiesn (the Oktoberfest fairgrounds) and rented it for 5 weeks. Bayern (what Germans call Bavaria) drives the auto industry which in a large part drives the German economy. BMW is based in Munich (I visited the BMW museum), Audi is headquartered in Ingolstadt and Mercedes is based in Stuttgart (while technically not within Bavaria is directly adjacent to it). Hundreds of years ago Bavarians were considered sort of country-bumpkins and even thieving knaves within the Nibelungenlied. These days those – people from Munich have adopted the persona of being sort of rich and snobby. This is not *my* description of Munichers, but instead their own! This year, October 3rd was the German unification holiday – celebrating in 1989 the unification of West and East Germany; a time I was told, ‘East Germany became much richer and west Germany much poorer.’ This gives you some insight into the local perspectives within a country which is still quite internally diverse. And while personally I prefer Munich […]
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I met my brother and dad in Cody, Wyoming for a three day road trip, fishing three rivers through central Wyoming. We fished the Shoshone, Yellowstone and Greybull – with the intent of catching Yellowstone Cutthroat – one of the four native species of Cutthroat trout native to Wyoming. My father was in the midst of completing the CuttSlam and needed a Yellowstone Cutthroat to complete the #cuttslam challenge. It was easier than we anticipated and I had a lot of fun practicing my low light picture taking at dusk. We continued on to our family ranch in Carbon County, in the family for 150 years, where I remained and spent some time working and enjoying my favorite place in the world. Though my official mailing address, apartment and cars reside in Denver, this part of Wyoming has always been my home. Though no family permanently resides here (we use it as a vacation residence in the summer) through my young years within a divorced family split across cities and states, two high schools, and college back east, for me it has always invoked that emotion that people ascribe to home. Re-entry to the comfortable can be dangerous when you are in the midst of exploring the world. Why re-introduce discomforts […]
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