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.
But I also contributed to a local beer magazine and Lindsay conjured up a business idea—both activities that center around sustenance.
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?
Travel the world and eat your salad, too!
Good to see you back at it! Hope things are going great for you in Portland. We’ll actually be coming back for a few months to see family and recoup some money into the bank account so perhaps we can get together over a beer and talk food and future travel plans?
Thanks, Rhonda. Holler when you’re back in town, it would be great to catch up.
Can’t wait to see what’s in store with Where Is Your Toothbrush – It sounds like such an interesting concept!
Thanks, Erin. You’re definitely going to be seeing more of us in the Portland Bloggers Group.
Congrats on the rebranding! Looking forward to your content.
Thanks, Brianne. Looking forward to sharing.
Welcome back, and congratulations on landing on a new focus! Looking forward to imaginary tastings all over the world with you.
Also, I LOVE that there are so many 7-11s in Thailand. There was always one in Bangkok right when I needed it!
Thanks, Catherine. We’ll do our best to convey flavor through words.
Oh the Magnum ice cream bars we ate at 7Elevens, in both Thailand and Malaysia. They’re also great for exploring the strange (looking) snacks and fast food items.
That’s where we ate breakfast most mornings… a yogurt cup and a tiny box of corn flakes provides a surprising amount of sustenance!
Awesome! Welcome back. Looking forward to reading more from you!
Thanks, Mary. We look forward to writing more!
I am so excited about this! I especially love that after you eat delicious food, you have to brush your teeth, so your connection totally works on several levels.
I’ve been wondering the same thing about our travel blog – do we keep it now that we’re sedentary? I’m slowly (haha) finding reasons to reinvent it here in Oregon… Thanks for continuing to inspire!
Yay, I’m so excited you’re excited.
Thankfully we didn’t have to twist the original idea too much to fit the new focus. Though the reinvention came only when we started to put in place the plan for our next trip. It takes more than we had to keep up a travel blog from one place, to maintain that traveling spirit of, we’re here just temporarily.
Good luck! We sure will follow your adventures, too.
Food is a very important part of travels. We love to discover new dishes, beers and wines too. It’s great that you are back and looking forward to reading your new posts.
Thanks, Cindy, we look forward to writing and sharing.
congrats on rebranding. cant wait to read more of your content
Woah! Haha great read! Food is one of the important aspect of understanding culture of another country or community. Totally in love with the cuisines. Btw I loved reading this post.. Thanks for writing this! ??
Thanks for stopping by, Tanvi.
This is a great website! I LOVE food and especially trying new food from different countries! I have been to Thailand and yes, i agree the food is out of this world! I am going to Malaysia next year so im excited to try the food there! Argentina is also high on my bucketlist to visit!
Thanks, Natasha. Enjoy Malaysia, where we actually loved the food even more than in Thailand.
Malaysia is one of my absolute favourite food destinations! I love the mix of Indian, Chinese, and Malay food, and the fact that you can find street food at any time of day or night. I think that food is one of the most enriching and comforting parts of travel. I have had many a bad travel day that has been improved by a delicious meal.
They call it “comfort food” for a reason…
The name of the website sounds lovely: Where is Your Toothbrush? Travel Blogs I love are those that have sections dedicated to FOOD. And all I see here is Eat, Drink…….haha. Welcome back to blogging.
Thanks, Lydia. Beer is food, just ask this Slovak, and wine is food too, just ask the French.
I think I remember you guys way back from 2013-14. Ok, not you personally (though, we might cross paths somewhere in the world without knowing it), but your blog ;). Honestly, there are too many travel blogs popping up, hanging there for a while just to be replaced with a dozen of others. Good to see that you are back. It would be interesting to check your tastes and preferences in food and drink. Cheers!
Thanks, Elena. It’s good to be remembered. You’re right, so many blogs we followed on our travels in 13-14 are defunct now, and so many more are live. When I re-discover a blog that’s been around for more than three years, it’s like finding a pearl. We love being back!
I love your new concept! It will be great to see the history of the foods you eat as opposed to just drool-worthy photos – although those are great too!
Thanks, Francesca. Drooling is totally underrated.