Florence, Italy

After a long overnight drive, we finally made it to Florence, Italy. It is the city of art and culture!

My first impression of the city was that there were a lot of naked bodies. The Italians really like the human body at its purest form. It was just awkward having a minor with you and they are asking, “what’s that horn hanging between his legs?” The only real response you can say is, “It’s nothing important child, let’s keep it moving.”

There was tons of art, as art is everywhere in this city. I am not passionate about the arts; however, there was someone with us who was and he pretty much informed us on everything.

Our volunteer tour guide told us that Florence was one of the centers of the Enlightenment movement in Europe. The art made during that time was mainly focused on religion and the human body.

When in Florence, make sure to check out the Florence cathedral. It’s hard to miss. It’s the building with the red dome. It’s truly a beautiful place inside and out.

Another site is the town hall. Our volunteer tour guide told us something about the flag on the building being amazing. Truth be told, everything he saw in Italy was amazing to him.

(All photos were taken by Hugo Morel)

Thanks for reading, next time we will be in Assisi, Italy.

Just wanted to say thank you

Hello everyone! Just wanted to say thank you for your support! We reached over 1340 followers!! Another awesome milestone accomplished! We have so much more context for you all that we can’t wait to share!! Places like Europe, Asia and Africa! Have a great weekend and stay safe!

Welcome to Jamrock!

How can it be Caribbean week without a post about Jamaica?

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(Photo taken by Hugo morel)

It all started with my friend telling me that he was going to celebrate his birthday in Jamaica. Of course, how can anybody say no to being invited to Jamaica?

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(Photo taken by Hugo morel)

The flight to Jamaica was so boring. It’s hard to let time pass when you are so excited. It was a four to five hour flight from NYC; however, it felt like 24 hours. I was sitting in my seat like a kid waiting to ask, “Are we there yet?”

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(Photo taken by Hugo morel)

Once I arrived in Jamaica, I was surprised by all the smiles on the locals’ faces.  Be careful when finding a taxi driver. Luckily, the taxis driver I got was honest. He told me the tips and inside information on the taxi system in Kingston.  If you see a red license plate, that car has been registered by the government to be a taxi driver. Knowing this will help you from getting into unnecessary trouble.

(Photos taken by Hugo Morel)

I was truly blown away from the white sands and crystal blue waters. Jamaica was extremely hot. Taking a quick dip in the ocean was really the only way to refresh. There were no complaints here though.

Next time, we will visit the Bob Marley museum!

Dallas, English training and Korean culture

Walking down the halls of my university, my curiosity got the best of me. As I was walking to my class, there was a poster on the wall. This poster was an advertisement for an English camp in Monterrey, Mexico. Who knew this poster would lead me into an exciting experience.

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outside view of my hotel, Hugo Morel

It was the last three weeks of 2012. It was a cold day in New York City and going to Mexico to teach English seemed so simple. Since, I speak the language and grew up in California majority of my childhood. Going to Mexico in December, I didn’t have much to think twice about it. After a week of workshops in Manhattan, it was time for us to take a bus to Dallas for more lovely(sarcastic tone)workshops. The drive was crazy and I was not sure, if I would be able to sit again.

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middle of nowhere USA, Hugo Morel

Once we got to Dallas, we went to our hotel.Our group stayed at the Marriott Hotel. The hotel had a very welcoming vibe. As you enter, you are greeted by the front desk. Going up to the hotel rooms,you see all the beautiful lights and carpet decorations.  We spent most of our time here, while in Dallas. This was where the English workshops were held at.

After settling down and resting, we started our English teaching crash-courses. The whole event was being held by IYF. IYF was created in South Korea. Many Korean friends were made.  Also, learned a lot about the Korean culture. How South Korea was really poor not too long ago. The technology boom, helped South Korea become a global economical force. They performed Korean dramas and plays. Our Korean friends, also gave us some of their food to eat. This was the first time I tried Kimchi and it was a great experience. It was spicy and went well with rice.  This made me feel bad for not checking out Koreatown in Los Angles.

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Dallas downtown with the Texas state flag, Hugo Morel

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Another shot of Downtown Dallas, Hugo Morel

After our workshops, we had time to explore Dallas. Unfortunately, it was raining by the time we were able to go out and about.That still did not stop us from exploring this city. Once we were done with our Tex Mex food, we found out how slow paced this city is compared to New York City. This city also has deep cowboy roots that are not hard to spot, when wondering this metropolitan. With all the exploring done, we went back to our crash-courses to get ready for Monterrey, Mexico.

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Thank you for taking your time to read this post. Also, wanted to thank you all for the growth of this blog. Last week, we just reached a little over 100 followers and now we have just over 200!!! All this in one week!! We also just reached over 1000 views this month. Once again, thank you guys so much for this. This such a humbling experience. Check up on us next week, we will be in Monterrey, Mexico. Much Love!!! Stay safe!!

Checking Out Little Haiti

Little Haiti, a place of real culture and down to earth people. Going to Little Haiti was a very eventful time in my life. I made friendships that would open many doors and eventually this blog.

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Little Haiti Cultural Center, Hugo Morel

Going to Little Haiti, I do recommend going by car. Public transportation to Little Haiti is not always the best. Once you are there, most of the corner stores are Haitian owned. Make  sure to check them out, when you get the chance. You can get a lot of Haitian products from fruits to candy bars.

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Haitian Flag street art, Hugo Morel

While in Little Haiti, you must eat at a local restaurant. No fast-food or Mcdonald’s! Eating from those types of restaurants, will ruin your experience in this cultural paradise. If you want some real cultural food, always ask the locals.

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A nice family owned restaurant,Hugo Morel

After asking around, I was told about a restaurant called The New Piman Bouk restaurant. It was a great place to go. It gives you the feels of being in Haiti. The restaurant is owned by a Haitian-American family. This is authentic as it gets for Haitian Creole food in America. One plate of food can feed two people. It is a great place for food at a great price.

Little Haiti has many cultural activities. While in Little Haiti, make sure to check out the Cultural Center. The Cultural Center has many events throughout the year. From movies to social groups, Little Haiti’s Cultural Center is place to visit for anybody looking to experience the local culture.
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Just want to say thank you to you all for reading and liking my posts. We reached over 100 followers. I met the person who pushed me into starting this blog in Little Haiti. Drop a like and a follow. Next week we will be going to Dallas for some workshops to teach English in mexico. Much Love!!

A walk through Little Havana

Little Havana, the soul of Miami’s Cuban culture. Where you can find questionably legal Cuban cigars and Cuban flags on almost every block. Little Havana was a blast to visit. My friends just arrived to Miami and we were in for a treat.

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Street Art on Calle Ocho of Latin America , Hugo Morel

Memorial day weekend in Miami is very hectic. When traveling to Miami, try to avoid this weekend. You will not be able to fully experience the city because of the bumper to bumper traffic. Luckily for us, Little Havana and Little Haiti were unaffected.

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Cuban and American Flags, Hugo Morel

After finally meeting up with friends, we tour little Havana. Little Havana has many choices of Cuban restaurants. For more authentic Cuban, the best restaurants are on Calle Ocho (8th street). Most restaurants would serve you a huge platter of food for about ten dollars. Some are buffet style, if you want to pig out or want the most bang for your buck, these are the best spots. The only problem with buffet style restaurants, there is a lost of authenticity to the food.

Something you must do in Little Havana is to walk down Calle Ocho. Walking down Calle Ocho, you get to see more of the Cuban culture. From the Cuban movie theaters to the Cuban liquor. On Calle Ocho, there is a Latin Walk of Fame. Similar to Hollywood’s, The Latin Walk of Fame honors Latinos of celebrity status.  This is why, Miami is called, “The Capital of Latin America.”

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The Latino Walk of Fame, Hugo Morel

The deeper you go along Calle Ocho, the more influences of Latin America you will encounter. Although, Little Havana will always have Cuban roots, many Latinos from all over have moved in.  Specifically, many Central Americans have made Little Havana their home. Little Havana will most likely forever be a center for the Latino community in Miami.

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My Mojito(a cocktail with origins in Havana,Cuba) Hugo Morel

Thanks for taking your time to read this post! Drop a like and a follow. Next week we will be in Little Haiti. Much Love!!

Sleeping on the beach, seeing the pope

After exploring the city, the time came for us to crash on the beach. Seriously, we slept on the beach like bums. It was a very interesting experience.  This event led up to the real reason as to why we were in Rio, to see Pope Francis.

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published by Hugo Morel

It was a nice 2013 winter day in Rio. The sun came and went at times. When the sun came out, it was extremely hot for the winter time. The type of hot that would give you a headache. Like the picture above, many of us found something to shield our heads from the sun.

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skyscrapers in Rio by Hugo Morel

Once lunch time came, we had to stay in line for about 2 hours to get our meal and our meal cards. The meal cards would give us two free meals per day. The pictures below were taken during us waiting in line.

Once night time came, we found our spots on the beach to sleep. We decided to explore a little around the city. Going with the flow of the crowd, we got dragged into a march from people all over the world. It was very interesting meeting and talking to them.

After a rough night of trying to go to sleep, the pope came. The crowd was extremely cheerful. With 64.6% of Brazil being the pope’s follower (not on twitter), the beaches of Copacabana were never this filled. It was amazing to be apart of history.

After seeing the pope, the crew packed up and headed towards the airport. Unfortunately, we missed our flight. We had to negotiate a deal with the airlines. Long story short, we had to drive from Rio to Buenos Aires. Trust me, it was a butt-numbing experience.

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the stink-eye, Hugo Morel

Thanks for taking your time to read this post. Don’t be like the guy in the picture above, drop a like and a follow. Much Love! Next week we go to Miami!