About the Trippers

Hello! We are (from left to right) Flo and Elena, and we do a lot of tripping.

Traveling is serious business to us. We tend to avoid the "typical" vanilla vacations - cruises, resorts, umbrella drinks - and usually find ourselves in some pretty amazing places as a result. Imagine a night time bike ride through Bangkok, a border-town market in Burma, sleeping in an oasis in the middle of the Sahara desert in Tunisia - those are the kinds of experiences we chase and cherish. That's not to say we don't go on an occasional beach vacation out of principle, because we have, and loved it... just that we prefer more authentic, slightly gritty experiences as a general rule. You won't find us in Disney World under any circumstances, for example.

The very first trip we took together was to France and Russia, in the summer of 2007, a few months after we got (back) together, to meet each other's families. Since then, we've been merrily crisscrossing the globe at a pretty good clip, checking things off the old bucket list any time we have a chance. Of course, it helps that both of us have had chronic cases of wanderlust long before we joined forces, and our past certainly has something to do with that.

Born in Russia, I (Elena) was brought to the US at age 11, much against my will I might add! That trip was my first time on a plane; first time being more than 200 miles away from home for that matter. The initial bewilderment of such total culture shock lasted for several years; it certainly influenced and shaped me in many ways. It laid the foundation for an intense interest in exploring other cultures; discovering new places, foods, and points of view, even when (or maybe especially when) they differ from my own. As a result of my early life experience, I don't believe in absolutes, and abhor fundamentalist ways of thinking regardless of subject. Nothing is black and white, the world is beautifully nuanced, and it would serve all of its citizens well to experience its multi-faceted beauty.

Flo grew up in a provincial part of France, where he never felt quite at home, nor fit in with the local small town mentality. He spent his college and early working years between England and Ireland, where he worked on perfecting the art of beer drinking, then lived for a year in post-apartheid Johannesburg, South Africa, which supplied him with a terrifically long list of stories to regale friends with. Fate eventually brought him to the US in 1999, where he's been ever since.

We currently live in Austin, Texas, but, as much as we love this overpriced cosmopolitan little city, we do our best to escape it several times a year in search of new adventures. And in 2011, we finally got ourselves set up with a blog, to share our stories with you. Aren't you lucky?

Happy tripping,

Elena & Flo