I’m the type of person who likes to have something to look forward to. I keep a countdown app in my phone to remind me of important things that are coming up. It makes the time pass quicker and helps with motivation. Yesterday I got back to the States after spending almost two weeks on a cruise in Europe. It was something that I’ve wanted to do for the longest and I even turned down a job in order to have the time free. The trip taught me so much as I had the opportunity to eat some real food and experience a small taste of how people live in other parts of the world. It was amazing to see sights that I had only seen in books or online. I had the opportunity to see Michaelangelos’ sculpture “The David” in person and it was absolutely breathtaking. I had pizza in Rome and Gelato in Florence and tasted part of a cannoli in Messina. One thing I love about traveling is that there’s always something to look forward to. Each day is markedly different than the last. There’s absolutely nothing like it. My worldview has definitely been expanded once again and I can’t wait for the next adventure.
It’s no surprise that traveling is one of my favorite things to do. I’ve traveled with friends and alone and I’ve discovered that there are certain advantages to both. One thing that I enjoy when I’m in an unfamiliar place is exploring or intentionally getting lost. No, I don’t go to some remote place out in nature and decide to hike. It’s usually either on foot or by car in some heavily populated area. While I’m in the States I’ll turn off my GPS and just drive for a bit making random turns and looking around. Getting back to more familiar sights is usually as easy as turning back on my GPS. However, there have been a few occasions where there was a malfunction of sorts and I had to wander around until I found my way back. I have to say that I have the most fun exploring in foreign cities. There’s something to be said about putting your map away and walking through streets and little walkways with other people who don’t speak your language. You don’t have the luxury of asking for directions and you get to be a silent observer as you watch people going about their daily tasks. It’s a totally different world. The best part about intentionally (or unintentionally) getting lost is that you have to figure out how to get back. At this point I tend to dig out my map and figure out the best route back to more familiar surroundings. Because as nice as it is to be lost and explore, there’s still no place like home aka the hotel.
I’m often wary of deals that seem too good to be true because in my experience they usually are. Earlier this year (January actually). I set a goal of traveling more as I usually do every year. I don’t know why, but I picked one of the countries in Europe as one of the places that I wanted to travel to. I found a package deal that appeared to be very economical and invited a friend to buy the deal as well. Ironically, as I bought the travel package I was sitting in a hotel room in the middle of a snowstorm imagining the warmth of the sun on a sandy beach. Needless to say, pretty soon we will know if this deal was worth it or not. So if we end up somewhere in a foreign country with a run down hotel room without indoor plumbing and whatever else, we’ll know that the deal was too good to be true. I really hope that isn’t the case but it will be a much needed adventure regardless—hopefully without too much stress. However, some things are meant to be experienced and overseas travel has become one of my favorite things. After all, what better way to ensure that I do my research next time?