Friends and vagabonders,

Greetings from Kansas, of all places — and thanks to everyone who wrote me after last month’s update with recipes and anecdotes about eating human placenta. Nobody actually volunteered to scarf down afterbirth on television, but I did learn a lot about this bizarre culinary art. One reader, who used to work at a birthing center, told me that eating human placenta is not as rare as people would believe it to be. “A good majority of the birthing families took their placentas home with them,” she wrote. “Most used them to plant a tree or other symbolic gesture. But it is also recommended that you whirl it up in a blender with other goodies, to give the protein and nutrients back to the mom. And many mothers did.”

Placentas aside, plenty has been brewing for me here in Thailand. For starters, I’m happy to announce that I’ve finished writing my first travel book, which will be released this winter by Random House/Villard. More details on that in future updates.

As for my current stint in the United States (my first in two years), I hope to enjoy a stay in my homeland through July. In addition to Kansas, I hope to hit both coasts — as well as Paris (which I realize is not in the United States), where I’ll be teaching a travel-writing seminar at the American Academy in July.

In other news, this month’s writer’s page features a conversation with Judy Wylie, a travel writer, editor and teacher, whose guidebook on California’s central coast will be released this month by Sasquatch Books. In June, be sure to check back for my interview with foreign correspondent Patrick Symmes, who writes for Outside and Harper’s. And, on a related note, I recently interviewed travel writer Jeff Greenwald for, regarding his decision to self-publish his latest book, Scratching the Surface.

That’s all the news for this month! Be sure to check back this July, when I hope to give you more information on my soon-to-be-published book, as well as my upcoming appearance in National Geographic Traveler.

Till then, cheers — and happy vagabonding!