Last month, I reflected on a question I was asking myself, “Where do I get my travel spirit?”
After lots of thought, I might have a little answer. I was intrigued learning a language when I was in 7th grade. I knew then I’d study abroad somewhere when I was in college. It almost didn’t happen. I used all my savings and applied for a student loan to get the funding needed to make it possible.
Many people have told me they don’t have enough money to travel. I’ve been sewing holes in my clothing (and underwear) and try not to go crazy on other spending except when I’m traveling. If you make it a priority or set goals and stick with them, you’ll make it happen. Start small with vacations close to home and then expand as you budget. Trust me, it’s worth it! Are you going to remember working hard and not using your vacation days or remember the trip you took to France?
Culture and learning more about the world is where I get my travel spirit. It excites me. I’m a person that likes to fit in but getting out of my comfort zone is why I travel (and is also the reason why I love outdoor adventures). I lived in Venezuela for a month when I was 15. A country where it isn’t safe to travel these days. I hopped on a plane to France when I was 21 and studied in a small town in France where I didn’t know anyone and could barely speak the language. I think these two trips were the start of my travel obsession.
As I get older, I do enjoy comforts of a home base and my own bed. I’ve noticed I enjoy traveling with others to share my experiences as opposed to being by myself. I’ll continue to expand on this notion as I learn more about myself these next months in London while exploring Europe and beyond.
Now, what have I been up to?
Bouldering in the Pyrenees.
Hello May! Keeping up with blogs and editing photos is difficult. I’m prioritizing being stress free and focusing on travel planning and my travels during this time. I don’t want it to feel like work since I’m basically on sabbatical.
May kicked off with my parents visit to the UK. It was so much fun showing them my travel style and my favorite sights in London. A couple days after they headed back to the States, I hopped on a short flight to Amsterdam to visit a friend that is on assignment and living there until June.
Next, Andy and I went to Munich for some beer drinking. It was a blast, but we learned not to stay at an Airbnb with a checkout time of 8 am after a long night of drinking. My friend living in Amsterdam ended up booking flights mid-week as we did and I got to see her two weekends in a row! Prost!
I stayed a weekend in London to catch up on life and save some money after so much traveling. The London Symphony Orchestra was starting their season and played a few blocks from where I live in Trafalgar Square. With beer packed in my bag, I met friends and sat on the edge of the fountain to listen to some world class musicians on a beautiful sunny day.
I ended the month in Toulouse and the southwest of France. I saw one of my best friends, Julie, from Seattle who was visiting her parents for the weekend and hosted us for a night. I ate lots of pâté de canard (duck pate). I did two day hikes in the Pyrenees to get my nature fix.
I’m back in London now and excited to finish my contract work with REI before my next adventures. Stay tuned!
New stories shared in May:
- Spring Skiing in Chamonix: A Photo Essay
- Construction Machinery: What to Expect on a JCB Factory Tour
- Paddle West: Tofino Kayaking Tour
- 5 Things to Do While Visiting the White Cliffs of Dover
- Photo Essay: My Parents Visit the United Kingdom
- What’s the Best 0-Degree Women’s Sleeping Bag?
- 7 Outdoor Weekend Trips from Seattle
- All Things Wild in Brazil’s Pantanal
My Favorite May UK Attraction:
- Peak District
My Favorite May Trip:
- Toulouse and southwest France
May’s Top 3 Instagram Posts
Cheers to two years ago skiing off the top of Shasta with Will and @cramptonism! One of the best base camps I’ve had.
What’s next for June?
I don’t have plans for the first weekend. Maybe climb the highest mountain in Wales? Stay in London and do a day trip? It’s already Wednesday and I’m sure I can figure out something to do.
The in-laws are coming to visit. I’m excited to share more London sights with them as Andy works. We’ll be taking the train to Paris for a weekend. I haven’t been to Paris for 10 years and am excited to see it again as a more mature traveler.
I’m joining Andy on a work trip to Asia (my first time) and depart the same day as his parents leave. It’s going to be a whirlwind of travel from Bali, Singapore, Beijing, Seoul, and Tokyo before heading back to London the beginning of July. Lots of flights are making it happen with some travel hacking and points used. I’m hoping to climb Mt. Fiji and see the Great Wall of China on the weekends Andy isn’t working.