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Ten of the World’s Cheapest Countries to Travel In



  1. Vietnam

Vying with India as the cheapest of them all, alluring Vietnam goes for a snip. Delicious street food, vibrant emerald paddy fields, smiling locals and the stunning Halong Bay are just a few reasons to pack your bag and head for this enchanting country.

A luxury hotel suite in historical Hue goes for twenty bucks. A guided tour to My Son temple ruins, complete with lunch and a boat trip? That will put you back five dollars! There are bargains galore to be had.

Halong Bay in Vietnam

  1. India

Although not quite the rock bottom bargain that it used to be, India is still up there in the ‘cheapest countries to visit’ list.

Travelling in India is akin to being in a psychedelic dream. You won’t believe some of the sights you will see, both ravishingly beautiful and deeply shocking. From the Himalayas to the beaches of Kerala, every day in India is an assault on the senses.

Travel, accommodation, and food costs are all low and budget travelers will get by comfortably for twenty dollars a day. If you are spiritually inclined, many ashrams are free to stay in.

Listen to some cool tunes for a few rupees – Dharamsala in India

  1. Nepal

Nepal is still recovering from the earthquake it suffered in 2015, but it is open for business and is a worthy destination to put your dollars into.

The country is not only one of the most affordable places in the world to travel in, it is also one of the most stunning. Eight of the top ten highest mountains on the planet are located in the country. Kathmandu is a fascinating city full of medieval temples, mischievous monkeys, and ancient alleyways.

The district of Thamel is the backpackers stomping the ground, offering cheap eats and hotel rooms aplenty.

  1. Thailand

There is a reason that Thailand is a consistently popular destination for budget travelers. Apart from the beautiful beaches, fabulous temples, lively night-life and a captivating culture, it is easy to explore. From the backpacker’s mecca of Kho San Road, buses run visitors all over the country to the most popular spots.

Sure, it is a well-beaten path, but it is also the perfect destination for rookie backpackers who are in the process of finding their traveling feet. It is cheap, cheerful and colorful and a few baht will take you far.

A temple on the island of Ko Chang in Thailand

  1. Nicaragua

Nicaragua has pretty much everything Costa Rica has (and sometimes more!) for about a third of the price! Colonial cities, volcanoes, beaches, jungles and even sloths are all part of the Nicaragua experience.

If you are traveling on an ultra-tight budget, you could get by on fifteen dollars a day. Pitch a tent or string up a hammock for a couple of bucks, live off tasty street food, travel by chicken bus and you will be winging it. Even the entrance fees to the National Parks are only two or three dollars. Viva Nicaragua!

A cathedral in the city of Leon, Nicaragua

  1. Cambodia

Despite the fact that Cambodia now caters to top end tourists, it is still light on the wallet for backpackers and budget travelers. Many hotels and restaurants charge in US dollars, sometimes adding to the cost, but generally speaking Cambodia is still one of the great bargains of the travel world.

Angkor Wat, the country’s crowning glory is high on the hit list for most travelers, and rightly so. There are, however, many delights beyond the iconic ruins.

  1. Turkey

Although not so cheap as many Asian and Latin American countries, Turkey offers a reasonable alternative when traveling in Europe.

Istanbul is an enthralling city full of history and culture. Visiting the major attractions will set you back a bit financially as entrance fees can be high. It is, therefore, best to pick and choose and save yourself a few dollars. Just wandering the streets and visiting the Grand Bazaar is a fascinating experience.

Street food, such as a simit (similar to a bagel) is very cheap and accommodation and travel are all good value. If you are going to the incredible Cappadocia, you can enjoy several days exploring the natural wonders on foot for free, only paying for accommodation (a cave hotel or hostel?) and food.

  1. Guatemala

Another Central American country offering some amazing travel experiences at cool low prices. Guatemala has a reputation of being one of the cheapest places in the world to learn Spanish. There are some reputable schools that run value for money courses.

Known for its colorful markets, you may be enticed to part with more cash than intended! However, with its monkey infested jungles, ancient temples, and enchanting towns, Guatemala remains a favorite destination for many backpackers.

There are bargains galore to be had in the markets of Guatemala

  1. Bolivia

Without a doubt, Bolivia is the best value South American destination for shoestring travelers. If you can live, eat and travel as the locals do, you can survive on a few bucks a day. Tours can potentially add to the cost, as some of the attractions are places that are not easily accessible e.g. the Uyuni Salt Flats and Valle de la Luna. Even taking this into account, it is still an inexpensive country to explore.

Colorful markets, spectacular deserts, fascinating mining towns, mountains, and jungles await in the bargain basement of South America.

  1. Mexico

Mexico is easy on the pocket in addition to being a fabulously fun and bewitching country to explore. Follow the usual rules regarding eating delicious street food, buying groceries and staying in basic hotel rooms or hostels and travel by bus and you will happily get by on less than thirty dollars a day.

The Mexico City metro is excellent and is one of the cheapest in the world. A trip to Mexico wouldn’t break the bank and it is a wonderful place to visit.

Margaritas are one of the delights of traveling in Mexico!


Originally posted 2017-08-20 12:36:33.


The Life and Legacy of Edith Windsor



As many of you may know, Edith Windsor, the pioneer for marriage equality in the United States tragically passed away on Tuesday, September 12th. Because many are upset about her passing (I know I am), it is important to look back and remember all that she had accomplished in her 88 years of life.

Edith Windsor, born Edith Schlain on June 20th, 1929 in Philadelphia to James and Celia Schlain, was a Russian Jewish immigrant and, because of the time in which she was born, her family suffered from the Great Depression. However, Windsor persevered and earned a master’s in mathematics from NYU and eventually joined IBM, where she worked for sixteen years. While in college, Edith met Saul Windsor. Their relationship ended once when Saul discovered that Edith had fallen in love with a female classmate. Edith, however, said that she did not wish to be a lesbian and proceeded to marry Saul. This marriage did not last very long as after a year of her tying the knot, Edith told him that she longed to be with women and they divorced. She then moved from Philadelphia to New York City.  

While in New York, Edith met Thea Spyer. Both in relationships of their own, they had to keep their relationship a secret. While Windsor was working for IBM, she received multiple phone calls from Thea Spyer. In order to conceal her sexual orientation, she told her colleagues that she was speaking to Thea’s brother, a fictitious person named Willy who, comically, was the name of Windsor’s childhood doll.  

“Like countless other same-sex couples, we engaged in a constant struggle to balance our love for one another and our desire to live openly and with dignity, on the one hand, with our fear of disapproval and discrimination from others on the other.”

In 1967, Spyer asked Windsor to marry her. Windsor was again afraid that her sexuality would be discovered, so Spyer proposed to her with a diamond brooch. Unfortunately, Spyer was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 1977. Fearing that she would not be alive to see same-sex marriage legalized, they got legally married in Canada in 2007.

Tragically, Thea Spyer passed away in 2009, which left Edith with a large tax bill that heterosexual couples would not have after the death of a spouse because the legal definition of marriage in the US did not include same-sex couples. Sensing the inequality, Edith decided to sue the federal government. In 2013, the Supreme Court ruled that same-sex couples were entitled to the same benefits as heterosexual couples. This milestone of equality was one of the catalysts that led to the Obergefell vs. Hodges case in 2015 that deemed the ban on same-sex marriage unconstitutional.

In addition to her pivotal role in achieving marriage equality, Windsor also volunteered with the Gay and Lesbian and Defenders (GLAD), the East End Gay Organization, the LGBT Community Center, and more. Edith Windsor is considered a pioneer for marriage equality and she certainly deserves the title. Thanks to Windsor, same-sex couples across the US can now marry the person they love with the full benefits that heterosexual couples enjoy today. It is my hope that Windsor can inspire others to fight for the rights of the LGBTQ community and help fight bigotry around the world. Edith Windsor is unfortunately gone but she will never be forgotten. She will continue to inspire the LGBTQ community to be proud and to fight for the rights they justly deserve.

Originally posted 2017-09-18 18:03:58.

Also published on Medium.

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LGBTQ Fashion Revolutionaries: Steal Their Looks, Steal Their IDGAF Attitudes



Hearing that a member of the fashion world is also a member of the LGBTQ+ community comes as no surprise – after all, the point of fashion is to bend the rules, be anything but normal, and to accept the extraordinary. It is fashion’s job to shake things up, so it’s no wonder that queer people are the movers and shakers at the helm of this industry.

We’re showcasing the best of the best in queer fashion – those who have broken the mold, stepped outside their comfort zones, and dominated the mainstream.

Alexander McQueen

Known as the “beloved bad boy of fashion,” Alexander McQueen was openly gay, extremely extra, and didn’t care to follow the rules – in fact, one might say he lived to break them. Coming from London ’s East End Givenchy house and moving on to his own label, McQueen was essentially the Mick Jagger of fashion. Known for shaking up the conservative label, McQueen sparked outrage when he moved to the French couture house, following John Galliano as Chief Designer. Once he had his own label, McQueen continued to push boundaries – even liberal ones. His shows were often controversial, and he was famous for creating “bumster” trousers, which essentially displayed a model’s butt cleavage, for lack of a better term. The bumsters were supposed to be a parody of construction workers, an interesting attitude toward class structure. McQueen often drew inspiration from tragedies, obscene events, and people who you would not see at any of his fashion shows.

One of the most memorable traits of McQueen was his I-don’t-give-a-f*ck attitude. Karl Lagerfeld of Chanel said of the late McQueen, “he was always interesting, never banal” – high compliments from another gay fashion rebel whose cat has its own Wikipedia page.

Andrej Pejić

An Australian trans model who has referred to herself as “living between genders,” Andreja Pejić is known as the “first completely androgynous trans model.” Starting her career as a male model photographed for Paris Vogue in womenswear, an idea brought forth by yet another fashion phenom, Carine Roitfeld, Pejić is not only taking the modeling world by storm, she’s also venturing into film and walking in the Prabal Gurung show at New York Fashion Week this year.

Pejić has noted that gender dysphoria is not easy to live with, and is an outspoken role model for trans youth around the world.

Tim Gunn

Honestly, do we even need to elaborate on Tim Gunn? Okay, we will, because he’s worth it – the Project Runway mentor is really everyone’s mentor, isn’t he? He’s like the impeccably dressed, kind-hearted, gay dad you never had but always knew you wanted.

Gunn had his beginnings, as many of us now know, as a high school teacher. He taught a design course at Corcoran School of Art in Washington D.C. and from there, went on to eventually teaching at Parsons and becoming an associate dean. Even before Gunn became a teacher, he had to overcome a debilitating stutter and admits that there were quite a few points in his life where he didn’t feel like he could “make it work” – but he did regardless. Gunn is a true inspiration.

Cara Delevingne

Cara Delevingne is one of the hottest models – and now-actresses – in Hollywood now. A stint as Enchantress in Suicide Squad and as Margo in Paper Towns has turned her into a bona fide movie star. Her career is on fire, but don’t ask her about her sexuality, unless you want to get a clap back. The blunt star has said, in regards to her bisexuality: “My sexuality is not a phase…I am who I am. I think that being in love with my girlfriend is a big part of why I’m feeling so happy with who I am these days.” We’re happy for her, and can’t wait to see what she does next.

Alexander Wang

Alexander Wang is an openly gay designer with a following- the likes of Rihanna, Chloe Sevigny, Azealia Banks, Gisele Bundchen, Nicki Minaj, and Lady Gaga, to name but a few. While recently making headlines as being oblivious to fans and viewers at his New York Fashion Week 2017 show, Wang is nonetheless an incredible fashion force to be reckoned with. The former Creative Director of Balenciaga, Wang has since gone on to start his own line and collaborate with H&M.

While some of the aforementioned icons are just beginning their careers, some are right in the middle, and some have tragically had their lives cut short, none seem to be without controversy (except for maybe our angel baby Tim Gunn). Whether good or bad, these revolutionaries have changed the fashion industry; time will tell what their ultimate thumbprint on the runway will be.

Originally posted 2017-09-18 16:54:51.

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These Are the Gays of Our Lives: Life Advice from a Big Ol’ Mo: Coming Out, Fitting In, Quote of the Week



Welcome to ‘These Are the Gays of Our Lives: Life Advice from a Big Ol’ Mo!’ where we’ll talk about life issues, answer some of your questions, and work through some of the challenges facing the gay community. So, feel free to ask anything you’d like using the form below. Let’s jump right in with the first two questions!

Dear Gays of Our Lives,

I’m unhappy. I’m unhappy with my relationship, I’m unhappy with my job, I’m unhappy with my family. I know it all stems from not being comfortable enough with myself and my sexuality to come out of the closet, but there are a lot of issues surrounding me coming out. My family would have problems with it, my colleagues would, and I don’t think I’m really ready to make that kind of leap for my boyfriend. He’s not pressuring me to come out or anything, but it certainly puts a strain on our relationship. What should I do?


It’s Dark in this Closet…

My Dear Dark In This Closet,

I understand your pains. I, too, felt that I could not come out to my friends and family. My dad was always so manly, my mom was always worried about what others would think, and I worked in a religious environment. But I found peace with deciding to tell my friends and family, but that’s something that can only be done on your own time. There’s no gay timeline that says you have to come out by a certain age, or for anyone. Coming out is a big decision, and you can’t be forced into it. Take your time. If your boyfriend loves you and isn’t pressuring you, then don’t worry about it. Sure, it’ll make things easier if you come out, but that’s on you to decide when the timing is right. Until then, hug your man extra tight and thank him for not pressuring you and for loving you just the way you are. 

Wishing you the very best, 

The Big Ol’ Mo

Dear Big Ol’ Mo,

I’m having trouble finding a place where I “fit in” and a group of friends with whom I feel comfortable. What should I do?


New Here

Dear New Here,

I wish I could tell you that feeling goes away with age, but we all feel a little out of place, or like we don’t fit in from time to time, especially in the gay community. With all the different labels we put on ourselves, like Twink, Otter, Bear, Chaser, Chub, Kink, Boy, Sir, etc it can be difficult to figure out where you belong. My advice, try to find people of like-minded interests. is especially great for this. There are Meet-Ups for every gay sub-culture and every activity under the sun. Twink who likes to play volleyball? There’s one of those. Bear who likes to play video games? Yep. That, too. There’s something for everyone! 

Also, don’t be afraid to get out there and try new bars and clubs. Most of them have different themes and crowds, so experiment a little bit. Try talking to people, making friends, etc. Even if it’s just for the night, it’s better than sitting at home alone! 

I wish you the best of luck at finding your place. You’ve got this!


The Big Ol’ Mo


“I never felt I had anything to hide. I never felt being gay was anything to be ashamed of, so I never felt apologetic. I didn’t have issues with it, didn’t grow up with any religion, so I didn’t have any religious, you know, issues to deal with as far as homosexuality is concerned. So, I accepted it very easily. For me, it wasn’t that big a deal.” -Martina Navratilova

Do you have a question for the Big Ol’ Mo? Fill out the form below!


Originally posted 2017-09-16 12:21:48.

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