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99 problems, but a blog ain’t one.

10 Jun

I have neglected this blog for quite some time. I’ve been a little busy, to say the least. Thankfully, there have been some major developments in my personal and travel life (i.e. lots of goodies to share!).

I’ve been slowly settling down in Canada. I must admit, it was difficult managing my ‘regular’ life after coming home from Southeast Asia. As time passed, I was feeling 10x more comfortable knowing that I’ll be settling Toronto – *was* being the key word. All of a sudden, a few challenges sprung up and I’ve spent the last month trying to reorganize my so-called ‘regular’ life. Continue reading

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Ciao!

24 May

The beach in Villefranche-Sur-Mer, France

It’s been a whirlwind in Europe. I guess I should start at Villefranche-sur-Mer, France.

The south of France (especially where I’m staying) is absolutely gorgeous! It’s very peaceful and relaxing. I actually made it to a beach, which is surprising considering the weather in Europe right now. The water was freezing, but the sun was blistering. My only comfort was sitting at the edge of the water and letting the small waves crash against my legs. I noticed a mom and her baby pointing at something in the water, so I got up to take a look. From afar, it looked like a piece of seaweed – but when I got closer, I saw that it was a jellyfish!! Small, but I’m sure the sting would hurt. I took a picture and ran back to show Stef and Jessie. I looked up and one of our couchsurfing hosts was swimming in the water towards us, so I ran back down to the beach to warn him BUT it was too late. He was stung – maybe not by the same one though. He played a tough guy – of course. Continue reading

Viva Barcelona + The French Riviera

19 May

view of Barcelona where you can see the Sagrada Familia

I am in Villefranche-Sur-Mer in the South of France – but first, here’s a update about my last day in Barcelona, Spain.

I decided to do a walking tour about Antonio Gaudi – a famous architect with an eccentric mind. I saw a lot of his most recognizable commissions and then the tour ended at the Sagrada Familia – which you should look up because it is amazing! After the tour, I went to Park Guell (another area he designed). It has the world’s largest park bench which is intricately tiled. Very beautiful! After all that walking, I decided to visit the Barcelona beach one last time. Pure bliss. Continue reading

Paris, je t’aime!

10 May

Parisian streets

Bonjour amis! I’m in Paris now and the weather is much better. Rainy, but warmer so I can’t complain too much. Despite what I’ve heard, Paris is beautiful. Sure you smell  pee at times, but it’s no smellier than Toronto. My first sight of Paris was the Indian quarter and my first meal was Middle Eastern… I knew this would be a great city!

Anyways.

I’ve never climb so many stairs in my life! This morning I woke up at 7:00am to beat the line at the Louvre and let me tell you – arriving one hour before it opens still means you have to line up around the glass pyramid. As I was waiting in line, the camera died. Oh great! The day I’m cramming in the most sightseeing, the camera dies! Just then, Stefanie notices Gerry – a friend from high school who is traveling Europe at the same time as us. Strange, but awesome. So he joined us and we traveled the city with him and he took all of the photos! It was perfect timing. Continue reading

Wet in Amsterdam

8 May

condom display in Amsterdam

If only it wasn’t so miserable outside! Yesterday morning, I woke up and tip toed out of our couchsurfing host’s flat in Frankfurt, Germany to catch an early train to Amsterdam. The rapid trains are super fancy. Stefanie, Jess and I scored seats in a 6 person cabin with a table and temperature control – I’m sure that will be my last bit of comfort for the next while.

The hostel in Amsterdam was a bit hard to find. There are too many bikes, mopeds and cars whizzing by. It’s a little ridiculous at times. Nevertheless, the city is an organized chaos. The bike riders even have their own street lights which helps.

Yesterday, I took a trip to the Sex Museum, which is small but educational and a little weird. The museum has an early pornography exhibition, erotic media lounge and bizarre sex memorabilia. There are erotic photos from the late 1800s (I had no idea our ancestors were so kinky!) and even old chastity belts on display. The Sex Museum is a must-see in Amsterdam! Continue reading

Happy birthday to me.

26 Apr

 

Kyle made me this box with a puzzle inside

So many life changes have happened since my last post. Where to begin? The most important thing is that I am now 22!

Well, Oli and I moved in with Kyle on Saturday (that was a lot of capitals). I was nervous about the ride up here – it was Oli’s first long car ride. I put a pillow on my lap and it was high enough so that he could lay down and look out the window. The car ride made him so sleepy – and me too! I struggle to stay awake during car rides. Oli was so excited when we got into Toronto. In the first 2 minutes, two groups of people stopped and played with him on the street saying how cute he was. I can already tell he loves it here. Continue reading

Death by credit card.

26 Mar

I booked my Eurail pass. Wait, let me rephrase…. I booked the MOST expensive Eurail pass.

The craziest thing is that my train pass cost more than my flight to Europe! I’ve spent over one third of my Europe budget and I haven’t even landed. Oh well, that’s traveling for you.

This week has been a roller coaster of sorts. Jessie had a freak out and almost canceled her flight. She was paranoid that we’d be abducted into the sex trafficking industry. I am not even joking. She was seriously freaked out. Don’t get me wrong, there are always dangers while traveling, especially for three young women …. BUT I think her paranoia stemmed from talking with people who have never traveled before and basing their assertions on Hollywood movies (Does anyone remember ‘Taken’?). Eventually, she calmed down and is feeling excited again.

My itinerary also changed. Now, I’m traveling to Frankfurt, Amsterdam, Paris, Barcelona, South of France, Cinque Terre, Florence, Rome, Venice, Interlaken, Grindlewald, Prague and Berlin! I’m sure this isn’t the final draft, and I sort of like that. Sometimes, it’s just about going with the flow. Viva Europe!

On a roll…

22 Mar

Wow. Life has been extremely busy for yours truly, but there is light at the end of the tunnel…

Despite my jam-packed schedule, I’ve managed to draw up a pretty decent itinerary. There’s a few kinks of course, but Stefanie, Jessie and I are getting together  this Thursday to get down to business. Our planning fiestas haven’t been so successful. We end up watching silly Youtube videos and making nachos. Last week, we managed to book two nights in Amsterdam. The fact that we’re staying in the marijuana capital of the world during the weekend forced us to book early. It was just the push we needed!

I’m ordering my Eurail train pass soon and fine tuning the itinerary some more. As of right now, I’m visiting Frankfurt – Amsterdam – Paris – Barcelona – South of FranceCinque Terre (Italy) – Florence – Rome – Venice ?????? That’s all I know until Jessie picks her number one destination. Will it be Switzerland? More Germany, France or Spain? Who knows, but I’m eager to find out. Traveling in a group of three and seeing everything on your personal list is hard. So, we agreed to start by each person choosing their number one destination and then go down the list from there. Mine was the South of France. I’ll admit, Stef and I did try to casually persuade Jessie into some places. We’ll see if it worked!

6 weeks to go!! I can’t wait!

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