Hi there, I’m Jona!

This blog is problematically named. My affairs with the world and words started with a book. No, I do not travel as cheap as possible.

What you see and read is not a lifestyle. It is a life well-lived and well-loved

BWAB is my attempt to document and write down my ways of living this one precious life through travel, food, and books.

For real-time stories, puns, self-deprecating awkwardness, find me somewhere else.



June 22, 2022
where to shop on state street santa barbara

Experience All the Best Things on State Street, Santa Barbara

State Street is a great place to explore on foot, and with 10 blocks of car-free space (yes, it is a pedestrian-only!), you can really take your time to enjoy all the sights and sounds. There are plenty of shops and restaurants to browse, so you can easily spend a […]
June 22, 2022
thrift store los angeles

Shop at These 20 Amazing Thrift Stores in Los Angeles

For sure, it is not only me who love going to the thrift shops on their trips. There is something about thrift shops that just beckons me— it is a window of the city’s past consumption and it gives me the chance to get unique gifts and souvenirs. And California […]
June 18, 2022
santa barbara spa resorts

WHERE TO STAY IN SANTA BARBARA | Experience Luxury at these Amazing Spa Resorts

Santa Barbara, with its beachtown vibe, high-end luxury hotels, and Mediterranean atmosphere, is the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of Los Angeles. With its beautiful beaches, Santa Barbara is a great place to relax, soak up some sun, and enjoy the California coastline. For those looking for […]
June 15, 2022
independent bookstores in santa barbara california

Shop at These Amazing Independent and Used Bookstores in Santa Barbara

Call it a personal habit, but when I am in a new place, one of the first places I check are the independent bookstores in the hood. What kind of books do locals read? And do they have some of the authors I dearly love? Or do they have the […]




Some years ago, I had an altar of “when you’re broken” reading list. They comprise of Michael Ondaatje’s "The English Patient," Alice Munro’s "The Progress of Love," and Andre Aciman’s "Call Me By Your Name." And the staple Mary Oliver’s “In Blackwater Woods,” Jack Gilbert’s “Failing and Flying,” Derek Walcott’s “Love After Love,” and the pseudo-poem of Jorge Luis Borges’ “After A While You Learn.” I read them. Again. And again. Cried. And cried. Soothed myself. Healed myself through their words again. Cried again. Read them again. This predictable yet painful cycle of breaking and mending. Each pain is different. Each healing is different.

Jona of Backpacking with a Book



Digging this unapologetic human?

This is a sincere, honest online platform for an ever-curious mind. Yes, it is a travel and lifestyle blog. If you feel like reading this biatch, who is uncompromisingly raw and honest on money, relationships, self-love, travel, and anything that bugs this chaotic mind, do leave your email below. I promise, I'm such an absentee newsletter sender.

Jona of Backpacking with a Book



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