OUT & ABOUT
Travelling in Style
My traveling style differs from journey to journey. For safety I often join small groups, sometimes I travel by myself, sometimes it's a road trip with a good friend.
So here are some examples of what I have done before:
1. Road trip - Irish Style
August 25, 2006
5 days, 4 nights sleeping in my car, 1 B&B, 2 flat tyres, amazing views and random pub encounters.
I was exhausted but it's one of those trips you don't forget so easily. I was on my own, driving around. I would park the car on the side of the road around 1am, sleep for few hours, wake up and keep on driving. Lived on toast bread (not toasted), Kelloggs chocolate cereal bars and coke (Coca-Cola).
I got 2 flat tyres and got myself into a situation where a couple with another car had to pull me out back on the road.
2. With a friend
November 23, 2013
You don't rough it as much, so you book nights in some B&Bs or hotels. You can drive around and use the hotel as HQ or book couple of different hotels so you can see more of the country.
With some friends there will be a lot of walking, wandering, contemplating the beauty in silence. With other friends it will be more organising something to do in the area, like Northern Lights chasing, raindeer dinner, horseback riding. And with others it could be little bit of camping, a lot of drinking, singing, star gazing and philosophizing.
3. Road trip with (almost) no car - Argentina
March 12, 2011
Due to the size of the country the road trip meant flying from one place to another. Few nights in Iguazu, almost 2 weeks in Barliloche, couple of nights in Calafate and some days in Buenos Aires.
It was almost like having 4 different trips in one. Different climates, different people, different atmosphere. Each one in a bit different style. Few days of luxury, few days of hostels, some hitchhiking, car rentals, kayaking on the lake, horseback riding, strangers met on the way, memories.
4. Joining a group - a blonde in Egypt
July 26, 2012
Well some coutries are not as easy to travel around as others. For a single woman in my eyes Egypt is one of them. For a long time I wanted to see the Pyramids and Abu Simbel. Then the Olympic Games came to London and I decided it was a great opportunity to finally make the dream come true. I joined a small group on an organized trip. There were only 4 of us and the guide, in the time of Ramadan.
For the first few days I was on my own and struggled, although covered from head to toe. So I have welcomed the company of others as it allowed me to enjoy the sites I have always wanted see.
5. Work and Travel - the Grand Canyon
July 20, 2001
So, what does a Polish person need to do to travel to the US? Well there are few ways, one of the legal, easier but not quite so cheap was to sign up for the Work & Travel programme. Long story short, once you sign up you search for an employer, to reach an agreement, which allows you to apply for the J1 visa. And in the summer off you go. It's a 5 months visa that allows you to work for 4 months and travel for 1.
I chose to work for the Grand Canyon National Park - don't ask me why, out of all the places this one had the most appeal. I mean, seriously, it's the Grand Canyon! The place didn't disappoint. Every day it looked different, every day it left me in awe. The job was a nightmare to begin with, however it was one of the best experiences of my life and I still keep in touch with some people I met there.
6. Visit friends - my romance with Barcelona
May 01, 2011
Once you start travelling you get to know people from many different places, with some you become friends, so of course you start visiting each other as well. I'm lucky enough that one of my friends comes from Catalunya. Barcelona is an amazing city and everytime I visit we make a stroll to discover some new sites, well new for me: Gaudi's creations, Barri Gotic, la catedral del mar, amazing shopping. Also close to Barcelona is Montserrat, a beautiful monastery on a top of a mountain. Great place to hike.
It's been a while since I have been there, so I guess a visit is due.
7. Studying abroad - Germany and UK
April 10, 2002
I was lucky enough to get 2 scholarships, one for a month to Germany, another one for a semester in the UK. When studying abroad you get a chance to meet people not just from that country and that area but from everywhere. If you need to you can get a part time job and immerse yourself even more in the surroundings. You start seeing the place from the local perspective. You get to visit some forgotten places like Castleton and obscure tatoo parlours in Germersheim for example.
8. Move abroad - Costa Rica
June 29, 2005
I'm not sure anymore whose idea it was exactly. My friends from Costa Rica invited me to come over and I came to the conclusion that flying half the world for few weeks just didn't make sense. Oh, and of course a guy was involved. I ended up spending there almost a year, came back with messed up spine and fluent in Spanish (the Costarican version). And in love, with a different guy.
Couple of years later, once I have defended my thesis and was looking for options in life a friend offered a room in her apartment in Vienna. 9 months later my German had a stronger Austrian accent, I was jobless and with debts, but with much deeper knowledge of knitting, crocheting and other handy crafts.
The lack of money lead me to the first job I could get, which was in London where I move next and am still now. New country awaits soon I hope.