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The Human

I’m Emily, a 28-year-old American originally from Minneapolis. In 2010, I booked a one-way ticket to New Zealand on a 12-month working holiday scheme. Through a combination of different work visas (and frankly, dumb luck), I’ve lived overseas ever since.

After four years in New Zealand and Australia, I moved to the Netherlands in September 2014. These days, I live in a small town in the east with 12,000 people and a lot of cows. When I’m not writing or taking photos, I’m probably mangling the Dutch language or falling off a bicycle somewhere.

For a longer version of my story, click here.


The Blog

At the most basic level, Em Dashed is about traveling, living abroad, and everything in between.

Many of the posts focus on my life here in the Netherlands; I talk about things like renting an apartment, experiencing Dutch traditions, and stuffing my face with stroopwafels. As someone who lives in the countryside and not Amsterdam, I have a rather different experience than most other expats.

You’ll also find stories about backpacking in New Zealand, road tripping around Australia, weekend getaways to Germany, and more. For a full list of places I’ve written about, click here.

I consider current events, historical context, and social justice to be inextricably linked to how we move around this world, and I don’t shy away from posting about relevant or important issues. If you’re the kind of person who thinks travel and “politics” are two completely separate spheres, this might not be the blog for you. (But if you’re open to the idea, maybe I can change your mind.)

Curious about the name? It’s a riff on my name, the verb “to dash,” and the punctuation mark called the “em dash.” In other words: it’s me, movement, and wordplay, all rolled into two little monosyllabic words.


The Mission

I aim to craft stories and guides that are helpful and informative, but also funny and human. I want this blog to be a relaxed, judgment-free space that promotes a more nuanced approach to travel and acknowledges a wide range of experiences.

That being said, I do not consider all opinions to be equal and will not tolerate disrespect, hate, or discrimination. There are wrong ways to travel, just like there are wrong ways to live. We can all do better, and we must.

Thank you for visiting! I hope you find inspiration, useful tips, or at the very least, a laugh or two.

Questions? Comments? Dinner suggestions?

You can find my contact details here.