We started Where Is Your Toothbrush? in Spring 2013 with the idea that we can be home anywhere in the world. We re-imagined the idea of home to travel around the globe, making a home wherever we were.
“Home is where your toothbrush is,” went the motto, providing us with a writing anchor, a way to indulge our tendency to be homebodies, and to alleviate the stress of travel.
Even more so, the tongue-in-cheek rule expressed our belief that home is a collection of meanings, rather than a set of tangibles like a house or possessions. Whether it was routines, places we frequented regularly, or parks, on our travels we found ways to make ourselves feel at home (almost) everywhere we went.
There was one other way each place became a home, but we did not discover it until long after we returned.
Home Is Where Your Fork Is
Upon our return, people would ask us, “What was your favorite country?” As difficult as it was to pick, we ended up mentioning a few we remembered with the most fondness. Greece. Malaysia. Thailand. Argentina.
Wondering why these countries and not others, we realized they had one thing in common. What that was became increasingly apparent as time went by, the trip receded into memory, and we settled back into our lives in the U.S.
Our warmest memories were all of food.
Whether it was the Christmas dinner on a beach in Koh Samui, Thailand, steaks and microbrews in Bariloche, Argentina, or snacks in George Town, Malaysia, the most memorable experiences we brought back home with us were of experiencing places through eating.
Wherever we liked the food, we felt at home. We experienced places most viscerally and learned about the host culture most tangibly through the one sense we never suspected of such power.
The chapter in the “Home Is” series we never wrote was “Food”. It took us a long time to realize this.
The right food forward
After we returned, we both started day jobs again. Paid work took up most of our time and sapped our travel spirit. The permanent traveler mindset I set out to maintain evaporated into the dullness of the everyday.
We also never gave up on Where Is Your Toothbrush? because we continued dreaming about traveling long-term again. And once we started implementing what we’d termed The Location Independence Plan in order to travel again in a few years, it was time to revive this website.
The debate how to restart our dormant travel blog was pretty short. We kept returning to our love of good food and gastronomical food adventures on the first trip. The conclusion came naturally: like our next travels, Where Is Your Toothbrush? will focus on food and drink.
Where Is Your Toothbrush?: A travel website focusing on food and drink
While our new, photo-centric look reflects this new focus visually, concentrating on epicurean content follows our experience of traveling and making ourselves feel at home through food. Though it may be a slow blog at first, with articles published once per week at the most, we will write about places through the lenses of cuisine, exploring local dishes and beverages on the backdrop of food culture.
Why are there so many 7Eleven corner shops in Southeast Asia? Why did the craft beer industry arise in Bariloche, Argentina? Why is coffee in Cuba so sweet?
As we eat our way through the world, we’ll look at the historic and cultural reasons behind the food and beverages we consume. Each restaurant review or a description of a dish will come with background information to provide some context.
We aspire to become the guides to food and drink in various places around the globe. Because of our own backgrounds, we will start with Portland, Oregon, a weird little town where we live; Slovakia, where I’m from, and Northern California, where Lindsay traces her roots.
Welcome to the new Where Is Your Toothbrush?