Reporting from Rila

Today, November second, marks three years to the day from my first and most recent trip to Bulgaria’s Rila Monastery. It so happens I will be returning to the monastery today.

To refresh my mind about the intrigue and the significance of the place, I watched the video I filmed inside the monastery on Nov. 2, 2014.

The Video

For me, it’s a little painful to watch. My face looks frozen, and it seems like I am speaking without any expression or emotion. Early in the video, I randomly start speaking in Bulgarian, and I botch the name of the monastery. Toward the end, I veer off into subtle political commentary.


At A Crossroads

Reviewing the footage reminds me of where I was journalistically three years ago — at a crossroads. In particular, the political commentary refreshed my mind about how I did not know where I was headed.

I did not know whether I was going to give up a more balanced, traditional style of journalism in favor of becoming a libertarian activist-journalist. I did not know whether I would give up news in favor of travel writing. I did not even know whether I would continue with journalism or give it up altogether.

I certainly did not envision being based in Bulgaria for the long-term or garnering work as a roving international correspondent.

But I did know one thing. I had to pick up the camera and film a video.

I have no idea whether it was God, the spiritual energy of the monastery, my past experience, my passions or any other force that was instructing me to do so. I did not ask. I did not introspect.

I just hopped over a rope, walked into a section of the monastery that was off-limits to tourists and shot the video.

Looking Back And Looking Foward

Looking back, I am satisfied merely with the fact that I have this interactive memory of my trip to Rila, a true palace of culture.

It so happens, though, the urge to keep exploring the world and keep pressing recording kept rising up inside me over and over again over the past three years.

My on-camera presence and delivery have improved — and are still improving — and I am finding more and more opportunities to film video reports on travel and news that excite me. I am still based in Bulgaria, I am still a journalist and now I get to travel the world on top of that.

I am sure I will continue to hit crossroads on my career and business paths, and I will certainly veer off in new directions. I am okay with that uncertainty. I even embrace it.

To you aspiring nomadic journalists, when that urge to press record starts bubbling up inside you, do not suppress it. Just start filming.

If you would like to learn more about my nomadic journalism journey and how you, too, can travel the world and report on what most excites you, visit and sign up for my email list.

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