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Ben Allen

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Maybe Accepting Guests

58% response rate · Last login about 1 month ago

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Overview

  • 75 Positive References
  • Fluent in English; learning Arabic, Armenian, German
  • 29, Male
  • Member since 2008
  • Fun Seeker/Writer
  • MA in Career-avoidance
  • From a place where growing up is overrated!
  • Profile 65% complete

About Me

CURRENT MISSION

Have fun, help, love, live, laugh

ABOUT ME

I'm originally from England, but I haven't lived there for many years.

I love meeting great people from across the world and generally having a fun time with them. And I love coffee, tea, hitchhiking, food, animals, more animals, hiking, more coffee, wine, cheese, seafood, animals, snowboarding, wine, hummus, hitchhiking, cycling, coffee, urbex, and coffee - Aaaalll that stuff... and not necessarily in any particular order.

My permanent home is Vancouver, BC, Canada. It's a pretty great place to come back to after extended times away. I love the outdoors and exploration. It's perfect for that. Over the past couple of years I've been splitting my time between Canada, Armenia, and Lebanon. I'm struggling to figure out where "home" really is these days...

I spend way too much time sleeping on peoples floors, couches, futons, roofs, balconies in tents.

I love bicycle touring. In spring 2012 my brother and I cycled the west coast of North America from Canada to Mexico. After that I lost the bike and went hitchhiking around Baja instead :)

I used to manage a bar in Beirut, Lebanon. Far too much whisky was drunk, and hummus eaten there.

The only place I've ever had a three day hangover was in Iran.

I hitchhike a lot. It's a great means of crossing countries/continents. I know the road between Yerevan and Istanbul way too well now...

I once got paid $75 and a burrito to spend a whole day riding a rollercoaster. It was worth it.

I met Victoria, my wife, through Couchsurfing whilst we were both in Armenia in 2012. She's Syrian, from Aleppo. Now we hobo around the world together. We've seen a lot during our time together, raised money and delivered aid for Syrian refugees in Lebanon's Bekaa Valley, slept in cow fields, on roof tops, watched artillery fly through the sky above us at night, shared everything, and hosted many many amazing Couchsurfers together. Eventually, we'll go and live in Canada permanently - once the government finishes with our paperwork! One day, Insha'Allah, we'll return to Syria!

I've always have an eye on the next adventure - so generally I try to save my $$$ towards that. Buying stuff? Not usually, unless it's something that can come with me in my backpack. I'd much prefer to buy a decent coffee or some shawarma. Most of my clothes come from the second hand store. Experiencing life is more important for me!

If you ever watch a Coca Cola commercial on the TV in the Middle East/North Africa, there's a chance you may see me, dancing like a maniac.

I'm always down for some fun times with CSers. hitchhiking trip? Cool. Going for a few drinks at the local dive bar? Totally. Jumping off something into the freezing cold ocean? Sure. Hiking in the mountains, camping some place beautiful, or generally hanging out? Let's do it. Explore some abandoned, Soviet era factory? Yaaahhhh. Or we can just chill at home. That's also great.

I'm a writer and photographer by trade. I'm a regular contributor to a few media outlets, generally travel related stuff, and a few other things thrown in.

It's always great to hang out with those folks who are in the midst of journeys across the planet. It makes me look forward to my next big adventure - wherever that may be. All in all I do my best to make lots of friends and provide positive energy for everyone around :D

I love love love ancient history and culture. I fell in love with the Middle East - a place so steeped in history it's breathtaking. One day, we'll go back there to live, but for now things can wait.

PHILOSOPHY

Who the hell said a 9-to-5 job was how things had to be? Live life - you only live once!

Why I'm on Couchsurfing

HOW I PARTICIPATE IN COUCHSURFING

Random adventuring, sharing stories, cooking together, just generally having great times with people doing whatever seems best at the time. When I have a place to live I host - and when I don't have a place I can be found asleep on another CSers floor quite often! Hazzah!

COUCHSURFING EXPERIENCE

Great times, love to make new interesting friends, introduce others and have fun. Always positive experiences across the board!

Interests

Travel
Dogs
Cats
Sleeping on rooftops
Goats
Connecting people
Hitchhiking
Useful/useless knowledge
Taking Photos
Hiking
Kayaking
Jumping off stuff into the sea
Snowboarding
Cycling
Reading
Writing
Music
Languages
Video
Swimming in the ocean
Swimming in rivers
Being spontaneous
Eating cheese
Eating ghormehsabzi
Eating pizza
Eating moutabel
Eating chocolate
Eating falafel
Eating hummus
Eating baklava
Eating fesenjan
Eating fruit

Music, Movies & Books

Spy Game
Into The Wild
Slumdog Millionaire
The Kite Runner
Harry Potter
Janapar

Ryan Bingham
Led Zepplin
Rolling Stones
Bob Dylan
Cinematic Orchestra
Gilles Peterson
Alexi Murdoch
Beirut
Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears
Bon Iver
The Clash
Joe Strummer & The Mescalaros
CCR
Dan Mangan
Mumford & Sons
Neil Young
Norah Jones
Sam Roberts
The Raconteurs
The White Stripes
Pink Floyd

Flight of the Patriot - Yadi Sharifirad
The Next Moon - Andre Hue
Horned Pigeon/Maquis - George Millar
Band of Brothers - Stephen E Ambrose
Parachute Infantry - David Webster
The Alchemist - Paulo Coelho
Harry Potter!
Baghdad Bulletin - David Enders
The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
Mood of Future Joys/Thunder & Sunshine - Al Humphreys

One Amazing Thing I've Done

I got bored one day and applied for a one-year Canadian visa. It worked out rather well - seven years later it's still home.

Going to Syria in 2014. A place I thought my chance of going to was gone, because of the war. But we made it anyway. A magical country enduring a difficult time. Damascus = amazing!

Cycling the west coast.

Long distance hitchhiking.

Lebanon. Live, love, Beirut :D

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I realise that this is totally not "One Thing"... but hey!

Teach, Learn, Share

I can teach you how to talk with a British accent, snowboard, open a bottle of wine with a pen, make coffee, write, take photographs, ride a bike, go hitchhiking, or show you around whatever place in which I'm currently residing.

What I Can Share With Hosts

A love of life, cooking various meals, hitchhiking, stories from life and travels, help you deal with immigration paperwork (!), smiles, guided tours of Yerevan/Vancouver, cycling, anything really!

Countries I've Visited

Armenia, Austria, Barbados, Belgium, Cyprus, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Iran, Italy, Lebanon, Mexico, Monaco, Morocco, Netherlands, Slovenia, Spain, Syrian Arab Republic, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States, Vatican City State

Countries I've Lived In

Armenia, Canada, Lebanon, United Kingdom

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