About Me

Hello and welcome to The Rocky Safari! My name is Rocky Trifari, but you can also call me by my Chinese name: 泰山.

In 2009, my Chinese teacher gave me the name Tàishān based on my English name, “Rocky Trifari.” The inspiration behind my Chinese name comes from the famous Mount Tai mountains of China.

While “Taishan” technically means “big mountain,” it also translates back into English as “Tarzan.” So whether you prefer to see me as a safari adventurer or like Tarzan the jungle man, the bottom line is that I love to be in and around nature. I gravitate toward birds and I have had a passion for travel and exploration from an early age.

Using that play on my name, I was inspired to create The Rocky Safari: a wild place where I can blog about all of my weird, unusual, and unexpected adventures.

A multi-topic travel blog built for nomads and nature lovers.

In terms of my educational background, I graduated from Rutgers University where I studied psychology and entrepreneurship. My life experience has shown me that through harnessing the full power of our minds, we can become capable of accomplishing absolutely anything.

Since our mindset plays the single most influential role in guiding our journey through this unpredictable life, why not choose to have a positive mental attitude?

In Swahili, “safari” means “journey.”

I love to test my own limits and I’ve come to realize I’m the happiest when I’m trekking far beyond the border of my comfort zone.

People are sometimes surprised to learn that I identify as an introvert because I also happen to be very outgoing. (A distinction I discuss a lot about on my blog.) As a matter of fact, I love meeting new people and discovering new things. I’m definitely not shy. I frequently speak to large audiences for work and I readily introduce myself to strangers. I guess it’s because I love to learn and I’m curious about seemingly everything.

In 2013, I graduated from a vocational high school where I studied graphic design and spent my senior year taking all of my classes at a local college. While I decided not to pursue digital design in college, I continue to treat photography and web design as two hobbies I deeply care about. That’s why I have continued to publish original, new content on here since 2013. I love to travel and blog whenever I have any free time.

Aside from that, I am also a huge fan of foreign languages (as you may have guessed from the intro, namely Chinese!) Then in 2019, I moved to Spain where I studied Spanish. You could say I’m somewhat of a “polyglot-in-training.”

A few things that are interesting about me: I volunteered as a tour guide at a Chinese Summer Camp for over two years and led approximately 200 Chinese students to famous landmarks all along the US East Coast. At the age of 15, this was one of my earliest experiences with leaving home to travel independently.

We ate at 14 Chinese buffets in a row during our travels (but they never warned me about that when I signed up!) Each day as our tour bus would pull up to the next Chinese buffet, I would turn my head to the window and shed a tear. This opportunity allowed me to gain both a large amount of experience and weight. 😉

Some of my other interests include birdwatching, drinking different types of tea, and of course, traveling! So you’ll probably read a bit about all of those things on my blog.

To help pass the time while flying and moving about, I also enjoy solving Sudoku and reading books on my Kindle. I have now visited more than fifteen different countries around the world (as of the time of writing) and I have no intention of stopping there! My goal is to eventually visit every country on Earth!

This blog chronicles that journey.

You should also know that I adore birds! I’m wholeheartedly obsessed with them. When I was a Resident Assistant in college, my hallway was bird-themed and I even hung a bird feeder outside of my dorm room window. I’d like to think that the random bird feeder dangling out from my window was somewhat of a landmark on campus during my time there. Maybe? Okay, maybe not.

While living in Spain for a year, my fascination grew and I was oftentimes called “Señor Pajarero” [meaning Mr. Birdkeeper] because the locals would see wild birds constantly flying and landing on me.

Anyway, I am definitely getting a pet bird in the future! (Still in the process of deciding which kind. I’m thinking maybe a Cape Parrot!)

In 2018, I set off on a trip to travel the world with nothing but my backpack and a one-way ticket to Athens, Greece to start.

Using money earned from this blog and other digital nomad gigs, I was able to pay for my entire trip in cash without creating a cent of debt afterward. On my blog, I teach others how to make this possible by making money online.

Please remember to follow my blog and connect with me on social media so we can stay in touch. Especially if you would like to know how all of this unfolds!

Remember, you’ll always get the WHOLE story from me. The good. The bad. All of it. Every single time.

I know my trip overseas is going to be the craziest adventure imaginable. You can read more about my plans for the future: here.

Don’t be afraid to reach out and say hi! I blog to reach and connect with people so I’d love nothing more than to connect with you now that you have ended up here! 🙂

For those of you who know your MBTI personality type, I am an INFJ which is the least common of the 16 Myers-Briggs personality types, especially in men. They say INFJs are the old souls, the listeners, the caretakers, and the advocates who seek to create a better world.

I was surprised to learn that male INFJs make up less than 1% of the global population. More specifically: gay, male INFJs represent less than 0.25% of all people in the world.

With stats like those, you can imagine why I might feel like a bit of a square peg in a round hole trying to fit into society. But what makes us unique can also be our greatest strengths. So much like a bird, I’m going to do what comes naturally to me, spread my wings, and fly.

Ironically, the MBTI personality type “most suited to travel the world” is the ESTP (the complete opposite of what I am…) So once again, I guess the stats are stacked against me in that regard. We’ll see how it goes!

JUST A HEADS UP, MY BLOG IS REALLY RANDOM. AND WEIRD.
But that’s why I love it.

Enjoy!

Rocky in 2013

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Please remember to follow! 🙂 <3

157 Comments

      1. Hey SoundEagle! I am so sorry for taking so long to respond to your comment! I try to write back to everyone who takes the time to reach out to me but the notification for your comment must have somehow slipped past me. That or my reply had an error and never posted. Anyway, you’re so right! My Chinese friends laugh at my name because of the literal translation but I like my Chinese name! It has grown on me because my Chinese teacher was so excited when she gave it to me. Anyway, thanks for stopping in and happy January! Haha 🙂

  1. Pingback: Liebster Blog Award « Mama Bear Musings

    1. Thanks, Susanne! The nomination is greatly appreciated! I’m sorry but I must ask: do you actually read my blog or did you select fifteen blogs at random? Only because I saw that you aren’t a follower of my blog so I’m just interested in knowing how/why you selected the 15 blogs that you picked.

    1. Hey Thomas! Thanks for stopping by! (Sorry, I know this is really late- I’m not sure if I ever saw the notification for your comment back in June.) I think you and your blog are really great! I enjoy when your posts show up in my reader and I’m glad we found each others blogs in 2013. Hope you have a happy new year! 🙂

  2. I really like your random blog! =D My best friend goes to Rutgers and she’s in the graduate school of public administration. I’m sure it’s a big school but I think the world can be really small at times, ya know? I enjoyed reading your posts and thinks it’s so cool you were abroad in China! Neat!
    <3
    Christina

    1. THANKS! 😀 Yeah, Rutgers is MASSIVE but it’s great because, like you said, it’s much easier to bump into other students/alumni and already have something in common with them!

      Glad you enjoyed what you read! FYI, THIS is why I love blogging: because of the unexpected people like you who stop by and enjoy the stories that I come here to share! I hope you continue to enjoy my future posts! 😀

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  5. So you decided to join the small clan of Uncle Spike followers, sometimes known as The Spikey’s…. That makes me a happy blogger now – I really appreciate you making that special mouse click.
    Hope you like my upcoming posts and if you get bored one day, maybe you’ll enjoy trawling through some of my older stuff too.
    If you have any likes, dislikes or suggestions about my blog, just let me know, either through ‘comments’ or via email. Always welcome reader input 🙂
    Have a great old day…
    UNCLE SPIKE

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  8. Martha Kennedy

    After I read your comment on my (Procrastination) blog this morning, I had to find out about you. I am also INFJ. So was Goethe. I dunno’ if you’ve met, but from what I read here, I think you might like him. I also love China — I lived and taught there for a year, 1982-1983. It was definitely one of the greatest years of my life. marthakennedy(dot)blog

    1. The Rocky Safari

      Hi Martha! There’s always something exciting about meeting fellow INFJs. I think the fact that you got to teach in China is awesome! I wonder if one day I’ll do the same. Last year, I volunteered to teach a class of Chinese students how to speak English through an online video chat on ooVoo. It was a great semester and I miss the kids a lot. The only way it could have been better is if I got to do it in person. Maybe one day! 🙂 Thanks for following and looking forward to reading your posts too!

  9. ashkej

    Hey. Just wanted to say that I thought I’d nominate you for a Liebster Award. Accept or don’t – up to you! Check out this post for more details. ashkej.wordpress(dot)com/2014/01/15/liebster-awards/

  10. Brian Andrade Baker

    Hey Rocky, thank you for taking an interest in my blog. I took the time to check out your work and I have to say it’s pretty awesome! You have a lot of personality in your writing and a lot of your pieces are very comical. I’m looking forward to more of your great stories.

    1. Hey there, Brian! No problem! Your writing is phenomenal – it was the great haiku you recently posted that first caught my eye! I can tell you are talented and I’m looking forward to reading more of your work in the future! Thanks for stopping in and I hope you get the chance to read more of my upcoming stories! 🙂

  11. You’ve had an interesting life, tour guide, Lieutenant Governor, et al.
    What in the world is a MBTI personality type??and what is INFJ ??? I lost you there.
    Once a Chinese student told me my first name (Nuwan), is like a Chinese full name with just two syllables (Nu Wan).

    1. It’s kind of funny, I just learned what “el al” means in my writing class yesterday and now you just used it- Whoa! And MBTI is a personality type indicator that tells which of the 16 personality types you are. The real thing costs some money and needs to be administered by a professional but free versions can be found online even though they might not be 100% accurate. INFJ means introverted, intuitive, feeling, and judging. The complete opposite type would be ESTP meaning extroverted, sensing, thinking, and perceiving. I’m actually going to make a post about this soon!

  12. Hi Rocky. I am thrilled you stopped by my blog. I am enjoying reading your posts. Thank you for the follow. I look forward to reading more of your writing, finding out about your interests and following you. Here’s to a great year ahead.

  13. Ren Ellis

    Thanks so much for commenting on my review of My Neighbor Totoro and for following my blog! I’m always happy to connect with fellow bloggers and I love that your blog covers so many topics. I also love international culture and foreign language and I think it’s very cool that you’re so interested in Chinese. I learned a little bit of Mandarin in the past but am currently studying Japanese (my best friend is Chinese American. Maybe I’ll try to learn Mandarin again when she stops making fun of my accent).

    1. Hi Ren! Thanks for visiting. I think Japanese is cool too! I’d love to learn it one day but I have a lot on my plate at the moment with Chinese alone. Don’t worry about your accent, I face the same challenge when I speak Chinese and I found it’s best to tune out any comments about your accent. 🙂

    1. Hi Don! Nice to meet you. Haha I’m doing my best to attract gay INFJs from around the world and so far, quite a few have found my blog. I hope you find that you can relate to some of the posts I’ve published on here. Definitely take a look and yes, please keep in touch! 🙂

      1. wow, you are definitely attractive =]
        it is somewhat miraculous to find out other INFJ gay as I frequently considered not being understood by others.
        idk, if we can organise some INFJ gatherings? or may you be my tour guide once I come to east cost for travel? I believe it would be great!
        btw, have you visited HK? if not, please come soon and I could take you for a walk here

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  15. Emy Will

    Hello Rocky,
    Thanks for visiting and following my blog Fur Out The Closet. This means that you care about animals other than birds? <3
    China has such a bad reputation when it comes to the fur trade so i would be very interested in your input regarding this.
    Best wishes, Emy.

    1. I absolutely care about other animals besides birds! 😀 It’s just that birds are my favorite. And I didn’t know that about China, though I’m not particularly surprised since they produce so many products. I don’t approve of it so the best I can do is discourage people from feeding into it.

      Thanks for stopping by, Emy! 🙂

  16. Hi! I just joined the blogging community and I found your amazing blog! I think I started following a couple weeks ago, but I didn’t really know where to comment (whoops!). I love reading your posts because we have so many things in common: INFJs, pre-med (also with this affinity for psychology), going to a vocational high school…it’s crazy! I can definitely relate to a lot of things you’ve been writing about, so I just wanted to say that think your blog is really brilliant.

    1. Hi Melissa! Thanks for following. It’s so nice to meet you! I’m glad you joined WordPress and I think your blog looks like it’ll be an interesting read as well. I’m just curious, what is your prospective major and profession as of right now? I always like to hear that from other INFJs! 🙂

      1. I’m a biology major in a BS/MD program, so I do 3 years undergrad and then go straight to the affiliated medical school. I tried switching to psychology, but I wasn’t allowed to; turns out I can’t take a lot of the classes that I wanted to take in college. When I was applying to college I wanted to major in something not biology, just because I was learning it for the past four years in my vocational high school. I’m really interested in interdisciplinary things and my program isn’t big on that, so I’ve been considering transferring out honestly. It’s a difficult decision though just because, well, we all know how hard the regular route is for applying to medical school. I still have no idea what particular doctor I want to be (although probably not surgery), but I will admit that child psychiatry has crossed my mind!

  17. Daniel

    Rocky,

    I stumbled across your blog earlier this morning and I couldn’t stop reading. I, too, am a gay male INFJ. I spent my 22 years of life feeling that I would never meet anyone that looks at the world through the same uniquely colored lenses as I do, so I felt it to be absolutely necessary that I reach out to you.

    If you are interested, I would absolutely LOVE for you to contact me.
    My email is towndani@gmail.com.

    Have a wonderful Sunday,
    Daniel

  18. silverbeans

    Hello Rocky. My name is Alexis. I study at Syracuse University as a Geoscience major. I’m so so fucking happy I stumbled upon your blog. I have so many things I wish I could just express right now. Its crazy! I’m also an INFJ and I’m also gay. Reading your posts about being an INFJ have blown my mind away. ITS SO ACCURATE. EVERYTHING. The day I took the MBTI my life was complete. To read such an accurate description freaked me out and my roomate was like dude are you ok CAUSE I WAS HYOERVENTILATING. I also read many many of your posts, they’re literally SO good cause I can identify so easily. God damnit I hope I didnt freak you out! hahaha

    1. Hi Alex! Nice to meet you! 😀 I got your message via the connected Facebook fan page and was SO HAPPY that you found my blog! I get so excited when other people find my blog and can understand/relate to what I experienced with the MBTI. Isn’t it such a game-changer? I hope you enjoy my posts and I’d love to get to know more about you! ^.^

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  20. Ferdi Mori

    woahhh finally i find another infj gay boy. u know the world, we r so alienate. u really2 hav a so f*cking GREAT life, Im envious of ur good fortune(literally) . im trying to change from gay to straight, we know its hard T.T wish me luck. and u, keep writing! really love ur blog (sorry for my bad english :’) ) lol

    1. Hi Ferdi! Thank you for the kind words. Please do not be envious! I have problems just like anyone else does. Use that energy towards bettering your own situation. Also, I’d advise against trying to change from gay to straight since I’m fairly certain that that’s both impossible and psychologically damaging. In the meantime, let me know if you need help with anything! I’m here not only to write but also to listen. 🙂

  21. Olivia S

    ROCKY! I randomly found your blog (I was googling Rutgers and TCNJ because I’m transferring lol).. Small world. Also, I’m an INFJ too! Hope you’re well! I might be seeing you next fall!!!

    1. Olivia!!! Hi hahaha! I’m cracking up – that’s so funny. You must have found one of my old posts from back when I was still in high school and trying to determine which college I wanted to attend.

      I hope you choose Rutgers. I’d love to see you around here! Obviously I can’t speak about TCNJ but I’d be more than happy to answer any questions you may have about life at Rutgers! 🙂 Good luck deciding!

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