The Chaos and Richness of India: On Assignment with USAID

by Al Hirshen It is a testament to the unique visual and emotional richness of India that twenty-nine years after working there, everything is still vivid in my mind. The sheer number of people and the extreme poverty magnify each experience. Every type of person is found in India. They cover the full-color range from […]

Working in the Land of Brown and Dank: An American USAID Consultant in Ukraine

by Al Hirshen In December 1995, when the Dayton Accord ended the war in the former Yugoslavia (Bosnia, Serbia and Croatia), USAID was instructed by the Bush Administration to render aid to these new countries. In its usual infinite wisdom, Congress did not appropriate additional funds for the task. USAID had to cobble together the […]

Racism on the Road: 3 Friends Drive Across America in the 1960’s

by Al Hirshen In September 1961, two college friends and I picked up a yellow and green Ford taxicab in New York City, to be delivered to its new owner in Kennewick, Washington. Anyone who wanted to purchase a new or second-hand car in NYC, without having to pick it up in person, used a […]

Stories from a Lifetime of Travel: East Nusa Tenggara

Stories from a Lifetime of Travel is a series that contains excerpts from a book which documents the lifetime travel of my friend and fellow wanderer, Al Hirshen. Each story offers a glimpse into Al’s experience living, working, and traveling in different destinations during varying time periods, from the 1960s until present day. This series revolves around a sense of […]

Stories from a Lifetime of Travel: Jamaica

Stories from a Lifetime of Travel is a series that contains excerpts from a book which documents the lifetime travel of my friend and fellow wanderer, Al Hirshen. Each story offers a glimpse into Al’s experience living, working, and traveling in different destinations during varying time periods, from the 1960s until present day. This series revolves around a sense of […]

Stories from a Lifetime of Travel: Indonesia

Stories from a Lifetime of Travel is a series that contains excerpts from a book which documents the lifetime travel of my friend and fellow wanderer, Al Hirshen. Each story offers a glimpse into Al’s experience living, working, and traveling in different destinations during varying time periods, from the 1960s until present day. This series revolves around a sense of […]

Stories from a Lifetime of Travel: Albania

Stories from a Lifetime of Travel is a series that contains excerpts from a book which documents the lifetime travel of my friend and fellow wanderer, Al Hirshen. Each story offers a glimpse into Al’s experience living, working, and traveling in different destinations during varying time periods, from the 1960s until present day. This series revolves around a sense of […]

Stories from a Lifetime of Travel: Morocco

  Stories from a Lifetime of Travel is a series that contains excerpts from a book which documents the lifetime travel of my friend and fellow wanderer, Al Hirshen. Each story offers a glimpse into Al’s experience living, working, and traveling in different destinations during varying time periods, from the 1960s until present day. This series revolves around a sense […]

Above and Beyond Alaska: Arctic Adventure Travel

A short film by Connor Callaghan about extreme adventuring through Alaska. Experience ice climbing, glacier treks, cave spelunking, arctic kayaking, beer and whale watching with ABAK wilderness trips and a small group of dedicated adventurers. Fill Each Day with Adventure Here’s a list of some day trips the group took and some information from ABAK […]

Al Hirshen Comes of Age in The Catskills

As a young boy I would run home from school every day to turn on the TV and drink in whatever show or movie was playing. It turned out all my favorite performers were veterans of the Catskills, Borscht Belt comedians, mostly Eastern European Ashkenazi Jews, who cut their teeth in the Catskills at resorts […]