Posted on September 18, 2019 in Blog
In celebration of our 10th Anniversary, Bast Amron has asked each of our lawyers to write about their passion outside the law. This month Bast Amron highlights Jeremy Korch. Jeremy joined the firm in 2014 and is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin and the University of Miami School of Law. Jeremy’s passion, described in his own words, is travel.
There’s a gigantic world out there, full of unfamiliar sights, smells, sounds, tastes, colors. And nothing makes me happier than getting out there and experiencing them. I’ve been cut-off on the road by wandering cows in Bikaner, India, and felt the heat radiating off of a boiling pit of magma in Nicaragua. I’ve snorkeled with penguins, turtles, and sea lions in Ecuador, and dived with sharks in Honduras. I am happiest when I’m thousands of miles from home, experiencing this wide, wild, wonderful world we live in.
Members of my firm, as well as certain clients, have taken to asking me what hot, dusty, far-flung place I’m going to visit next, and I love when I can give them a definite location and a date. Having a trip on the books gives me something to look forward to, it gives me a new location to learn about (oftentimes it gives me a new alphabet to learn in advance of going), and it buoys my spirits to know that I’m going to be faced with new challenges to surmount. These challenges can range from trying to figure out how to ask for a bottle of water when I don’t speak the language, booking a train ticket in India (and then surviving the journey!), or successfully flagging down a van on the side of a Lebanese highway to take me from Byblos, Lebanon to Beirut.
Some people are country collectors – for them it’s about quantity over quality. They rack up countries visited by taking strategic layovers, and often have an impressive number of new stamps in their passports. But that’s not my style. I prefer to entrench myself in a city for a week and really get to know it – there are some cities where that approach backfires – Budapest can get old after a week… Beirut gets old after two days… and then there are the cities that I could return to over and over again – Mexico City, Istanbul… Spending a week in a place removes the pressure to see everything in a compressed timeframe, and gives me the option to grab my camera and veer away from the areas frequented by BigBus Tours. I get to pet all the street cats, practice greeting strangers in a foreign language, and search out the best falafel, the best Turkish breakfast, the best pambozo de pollo. It gives me the opportunity to learn a new streetscape, learn a new public transportation system, learn the rhythms of non-Judeo-Christian majority cities, and to rely on the good nature and generosity of strangers helping me, a foreigner in a foreign land.
My parents are responsible for teaching me to love traveling. The first time I ever left the country, I was 14, and my mother, brother and I flew from Baltimore to Seoul, Korea for a month, to visit my father who was stationed there for a year. Since we were a military family, thereafter, we were able to fly on cargo planes for free, meaning that for the price of renting a beach house on the outer banks of North Carolina for two weeks, my parents could take us to Spain, England, Germany, France, the Azores, or Italy, instead, since airfare wasn’t fancy, but it was free. Those trips provided the backdrop for some of my happiest memories growing up, and I am extremely lucky that every other year, my parents still take my brother, me, and our significant others, on a family vacation. Two years ago, we spent two weeks in the Galapagos Islands, this year, we’re headed to Sicily. These vacations are priceless to me – I am so fortunate that I have a family that has the financial wherewithal to travel, is healthy enough to travel, that we all get along with each other, and that we are all infected with the travel-bug, and itching with curiosity about what’s around the next corner. But mostly, I am fortunate that every other year, we are able to drop everything for two weeks come together as a unit, experience beautiful things that we’ve never experienced before, and find ways to succeed with each other, even if that success is as small as figuring out how to buy a subway ticket. I am so lucky that my relationship with my parents and brother grows, year-by-year, to include new shared experiences.
Even when it’s not a “family vacation year,” I try to add at least two new stamps to my passport. As the quote goes, “travel is the only thing that you buy that makes you richer.” I wholeheartedly agree with that perspective. Indulging in my wanderlust is one of the most personally rewarding things that I do for myself. I can’t wait to tell you about my next trip, and to give you some pointers if you’re going where I’ve already been!
About the Author: Jeremy Korch practices in the area of commercial litigation, real estate litigation and insolvency. His experience includes prosecuting and defending matters involving commercial litigation, officer and director liability, trust litigation, real estate litigation, landlord/tenant disputes, eminent domain, and appellate law. Additionally, Jeremy has significant experience in prosecuting and defending a wide array of civil matters, through post-judgment collection proceedings. Click here to find out more about Jeremy.