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Mount Royal University
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Ashley

Hey, I’m Ashley!

Calgary, Alberta, Canada · Member since January 2013
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I'm from Calgary, Alberta, and I'm a true Canadian through and through. I am a university student and also work for a medical clinic. My passions are travel, photography, writing/reading, and live music. I am a quiet, clean, private and respectful person, which is why I prefer to stay in a hotel or a private apartment rather than a hostel. I have couch-surfed before, but I really like the Airbnb-style of travelling. (What can I say, I like sleeping in a bed!)

I have been to many countries, and love experiencing new cultures, people and cities. I'm working towards a degree in Journalism, so I love asking questions, exploring and meeting new people.

A few of my favourite cities that I've visited before are:
1) New York; because they just don't have skyscrapers like that in Calgary. I love architecture and history, and both abound in NYC.
2) Sydney, Australia; because the people are so friendly, the pace of the city is intoxicating, and really, what city offers buildings like the Opera House while also having the beautiful bridge, the tower, and all that gorgeous water?
3) New Delhi, India; because this city has challenged me more than any other. The sheer masses of people is an adjustment in and of itself, then the smells, the traffic, the language barrier, and even the showers take some getting used to. I love being challenged when I travel to new places, and this city definitely did it.
4) Belize City, Belize; because the city is vibrant and and the water is beautiful. I love the fish markets, the scuba diving and snorkeling, and talking to the locals.
5) Washington D.C.; because there is SO much to do, and so much of it is free. The museums and monuments are a pleasure now matter how many times you visit, and it is so much greener than I anticipated.

Some of my hobbies are scuba diving, fishkeeping (I love live planted tanks and bettas), photographing architecture, and reading. I'm also a huge fan of the show Frasier, which is my go-to show if I need a laugh.

Five of my favourite experiences so far in life:
1) While travelling around India, I was up in McLeod Ganj, where the Dalai Lama's temple is. I planned the trip up there because he happened to be there that week, and he was giving an introductory lesson on Buddhism over a couple of days. Seeing the Dalai Lama in person was incredible, and just sitting in his presence and listening to him speak (though I didn't understand a word he said) was really uplifting. To understand what he was saying, I got a radio and tuned it into the live translation that was going on. It was translated into a lot of languages, English was one of them!
2) I was on a live aboard catamaran for diving through the Whitsundays in Australia, which was absolutely incredible. One night, I chose to sleep on the part of the catamaran that was like a trampoline (sorry, I don't know boat lingo and have no idea what the actual name for this part of the boat this is) and when I woke up, I was enveloped in an ocean of stars. There was no man-made light source for miles around, so it was just me and the stars. I've never had a more breathtaking experience.
3) When I was in Maui, I did a tour that took the group to the top of a volcano early in the morning, so you were at the top when the sun rose. The volcano was huge, so when the sun rose above it, it was like being on a different planet. Then we all biked down the volcano, through a little village and eucalyptus farms. It was a really unique experience.
4) I love live music, so I've been to the Sasquatch Music Festival in Washington a couple of times. There is something special about camping with thousands of people, and being part of that huge group who are all there to see the bands, listen to music, and have an incredible experience.
5) When I was in Nova Scotia, I took a trip out to Peggy's Cove to see the lighthouse. As I was leaving, the captain of a little tour ship asked me if I wanted to go out on his boat and see the lighthouse and surrounding area. I was going to decline, but I was trying to force myself to say yes to more invitations, so I agreed. It ended up being a really neat little boat ride, but the best part is that he asked me back to his family's place for a real East Coast dinner, which included fresh mussels and fresh-caught lobster. We chatted about his experiences living in such a small town (comparatively), my experiences living in a big city, and conversed like old friends. I love meeting new people and discovering things about them, and the captain was a really interesting guy.

I'm pretty open, so I'd love to have a chat with you the host while I stay at your place, if you're around :)