A Travellerspoint blog

Day 4: Venice to Verona and my epic pasta fail!

19 April 2016

semi-overcast 22 °C

Venice – Day 3 – Tuesday 19th April

This morning, my last in Venice, I was viciously woken by the sound of a loud fire alarm! No wait, that’s just SOME IDIOT’S ALARM CLOCK!!! IN A HOSTEL!!! IN A SHARED DORM!!! MUTHA….oh look, it’s a canal full of gondolas (gondoli?). Sigh….

After that brutal awakening, and no more sleep to be had, I was up, packed, and out for the final little adventure in Venice – St Mark’s bell tower in the piazza, overlooking St Mark’s basilica, Doge’s Palace, Venice library, and the expansive network of canal and jigsaw of buildings with terracotta roofs. It is such an incredible view, the photos barely doing it justice. A beautiful final mental image of my time in Venice.
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And then I was off…up the Grand Canal for the final time on the No. 1 vaporetto headed for Fair Verona, where we lay our scene…

Morning Summary:
Cappuccinos – 1
Breakfast pizzas – 0
Idiots who enjoy waking up to the dulcet tone of a fire alarm – 1
Expletives uttered pre-8am – 4

Heart-stopping aerial views of Venice…priceless!

Verona – Day 3 – Tuesday 19th April

Once again I am blown away with the ease of travel and transportation. My luggage, which I anticipated giving me extreme grief, has been delightful except for the several flights of stairs I’ve tackled sometimes single-handledly, sometimes with assistance (whilst watching random strangers pick up my suitcase and walk purposefully in the other direction with not so much as a ‘may I’, although the help has been appreciated!). Venice train station was simply easy – ticket purchased from the Trenitalia machines was a breeze, although I did purchase a first class ticket, only to discover, or not as the case may be, that I couldn’t find the first class carriage! Oh well, a very comfortable second class passage and I’ve learnt my lesson about being a snob. There was time for a standing macchiato and a tiny prosciutto, sun-dried tomato, and mozzarella bun, and the most mouth-watering pastry called a sfogliatelle with layer upon layer of crispy filo surrounding a gooey centre of ricotta cream. Gah….new favourite dessert (don’t listen tiramisu, you’ll always have my heart).

The train took me through the expansive green country-side from Venice to Verona, in a mere 1.5 hours with only a few stops along the way. To my right, a snow capped mountain, and all around little houses with cottage gardens or small vineyards. I can see the appeal already of escaping to the Italian countryside to have a crack at becoming a famous writer slash wine maker slash eater of home-grown food.

Verona was similarly easy to navigate on arrival, with a short bus trip to the centre of town a moment’s walk to my accommodation, which is a lovely comfortable single room for a night of pure relaxation and undisturbed sleep (with nary a fire-alarm to be heard!). With the afternoon ahead of me I embarked on what would be my most awkward moments so far of the trip, highlighting my need for rest and relaxation!

Fair Verona is a quaint little town, and from where I’m staying only a 5 minute walk to some of the main sights such as the colosseum and Piazza Bra (great name!). I was ready for a late lunch and a stroll to see a few of the nearby sights, given I’m only staying for one night. To facilitate, given there wasn’t much time for group tours, I downloaded a free walking tours audio app to self-navigate, which works amazingly well (izi.Travel for those interested!).
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I headed out and 5 minutes later was in Piazza Bra, a beautiful central park and cobbled streets flanked by cafes, the Roman colosseum, and a few other fancy looking buildings I’m sure I’ll find out about. But I was cold, so went back to the hotel to gear-up.

Ten minutes later, I was back, perusing the cafes for something simple and cheap, and spaghetti carbonara won out at the café nearest the colosseum. No sooner had it come out, I sprinkled some parmesan cheese over the top, prepping it for its photographic debut, and the whole effing tin of parmesan tipped out on the plate! The waiter patiently took it aware, tidied it up again, and presented it to my rouge-coloured self once again. I must admit, I’m not having a heap of luck with the ol’ pasta situation, and this carbonara was decidedly average. Props to ‘Pasta Addiction’ in Fremantle who win the carbonara stakes hands down! Having finished some, but not all, I was over it and ready to go exploring…only to find I hadn’t brought my fricking wallet. Humiliating moment number two ensued, trying to explain in English (with a weird Italian flare, as if that would help…but I was under pressure!) to the waiter, who spoke no English, that I would be back in 10 to which he replied...something something taxi. Yep, clearly not on the same page, but he seemed forgiving enough so I sidled out, probably not a good look for someone who was essentially skipping out on the bill, but I promise I’ll be back! And I was…15 minutes later with money, and he seemed extremely surprised and grateful to see me.

Onto the colosseum, with a €10 entry fee, for the first sight of Verona. The colosseum, which is apparently one of the most well-preserved, and used today on a near-daily basis as the venue for a variety of opera performances was spectacular from the outside and…underwhelming from the inside. The interior corridors were blocked off for the majority of the arena, and whilst structurally impressive, did not have much in the way of explanation about what you were seeing and what went on in certain areas. Walking into the arena itself, again incredibly impressive in grandeur, felt similar (except for the rock amphitheatre seating) to a modern area, given the ground level and part of the steps were kitted out for the opera performances). The view from the top, however, was beautiful, with just a glimpse of the variety of aspects Verona holds. They would have to wait for another day.
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Nap time and a quiet dinner (fully paid for!) await to recharge the batteries.

Afternoon summary:
Pasta consumed – 1
Pasta paid for – 0…then 1
Humiliating cheese incidents – 1
Colossal colosseum stairs climbed – 100+

Very forgiving waiters….priceless!

Posted by jenniferhall 12:09 Archived in Italy Tagged venice verona train italy travelling colosseum pasta bra fail parmesan piazza_bra skipped_the_bill lost_wallet no_money Comments (0)

Day 3: Venice..a Doge, a goose, and a colourful adventure!

18 April 2016

sunny 21 °C

Venice – Day 3 – 18th April

As the creepy hot air emanating from the decades-old hair-dryer attempted to puff its way to victory, I had plenty of time to contemplate my third day in Venice. I’ve never been so happy to wake up on a Monday morning (sorry Doug!), with some of the main sight-seeing action taking place today.

A croissant and a cappuccino later, and I was lining up at the entry to Doge’s palace at 8:25am before its opening time of 8:30am. Good strategy, FYI – only a few minutes later I was entering into the relatively empty inner courtyard. The Doge, being the head of the city, but not king-like, had a pretty impressive combination home/office. Room after room of decadently adorned cavernous chambers bursting with Renaissance art of religious and political imagery was on the first and second levels (I think, it’s hard to count levels when there’s so many stairs!). An armoury, and maze of prison cells, accessed through the historic Bridge of Sighs added an eerie feeling to the tour.
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The audio guide was well worth the additional €5, but alas, my flailing memory cannot contain that much info whilst juggling the camera, hat, and phone. Whilst it’s nice to capture some of these once-in-a-lifetime experiences, there’s something to be said for popping the camera away and immersing yourself into the actual experience; visualising what it would have been like sans selfie-sticks. The most spectacular chamber was the Chamber of the Great Council, an enormous chamber and the largest of its kind which doesn’t have supporting columns breaking the visual spectacle of the highly adorned ceiling. This was where meetings of the 1,500 strong council would meet, comprised of the male members of Venetian families who were over the age of 25, making it a truly republic political structure. I hear it was a stinky hot room in summer, and they occasionally got permission to meet elsewhere in a breezy shed. Classy.

The Doge was a bit of a voyeur, and fancied watching the spectacle of a cheeky Sunday arvo beheading. He even had a special vantage point, between the 10th and 11th column (from the left) on the terrace, which are tinted pink. The executions took place between the two columns at the southern end of the square, and superstitious Italians seldom walk between them even to this day.
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Next stop at around 9:30am was St Mark’s Basilica. The lengthy line queued outside did not bode well for me, with horror stories of 2 hour queues running through my mind. But as the basilica opens to the public at 9:30am, it was only a few minutes before we were funnelled into the entry. The ceiling of the internal domes of the basilica are highly decorated with millions of tiny mosaic tiles, many of which are gilded with 24 carat gold leaf. Inside it is dimly lit, and the effect is subtle, but I hear on a daily basis for an hour or so lights are directed to the ceilings and a golden glow emanates through the church. The floors are like waves, with centuries of movement confusing my inner spirit level. There are detailed mosaics adorning the floor, with what seems like a different pattern for every square meter. Definitely taking a mental picture for the next time I embark on a bathroom tiling job!

I paid €2 extra to see the Pala d’Oro alter piece, a silver and gold plated panel with almost two thousand precious gems sparkling to enhance the effect. I also paid €5 to head up a narrow, steep flight of stairs to St Mark’s basilica museum, where models and sketches of the various renovations of the basilica are on display, as well as the original horse statues (the horses on the terrace are replicas). Mosaics, tapestries, a double bass owned by one of the most renowned bassists of the church, and chorale books formed a history of the basilica. The terrace called, and did not disappoint with spectacular aerial views of the piazza and surrounds. The trouble with being a solo traveller is getting a good photo of yourself in front of some of the incredible sights. On the terrace I ambushed three separate sets of tourists to get at least one moderately ok photo of myself with the piazza. Note to self: take the selfie stick out!
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Entry to the Doge’s Palace included entry into Museo Correr so I ducked in to have a quick look given I was starving and exhausted, and as delightful as the beautiful building was, and some of the interesting sculptures, my favourite piece was a woman cuddling/spooning a goose. Delightful and joyful. Hope she didn’t eat it after the portrait was taken!
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Heading out to find something for lunch, I got totally lost, and found myself doing a giant circuit of the little alleyways, only to end up back in St Mark’s piazza! I abandoned the mission and decided to grab something over on the island of Burano.

There are two main islands off Venice; Murano, famous for its glass making history, and Burano, famous for its lace and the colourful houses lining the little streets and canal through the town. Having a greater love of all things craft than that of expensive glass, I opted to just visit Burano. A lovely boat ride of 45 minutes, where the leaning bell-tower of Burano is quite clear, saw me arrive with moments to spare before my stomach started digesting itself in starvation! But despite my growling belly, the joviality of the town and the stark colours of the buildings drew my attention.
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There isn’t much to do in little Burano, but as in Venice, walking the streets and marvelling at the simplicity of it all is delightful. I found a little café for my first Italian lasagne (Barbara, my last housemate, wins hands-down with her Nonna’s recipe!) and a glass of rose. Next stop, the equal-best tiramisu gelato of my life, matched only by Ice & Slice in Newtown (ahh the memories Stephifish!). The streets are lined with vendors selling all things lace, some dodgy, some extravagantly expensive, but nothing which tickled my fancy. After wandering hypnotised by every colourful building which caught my eye, and taking a few random turns, I was once again lost, but stalking fellow-travellers eventually led me back to the main strip.
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Whether it was the small canal, or the trickling of a fresh-water fountain, I found myself for the first time acutely aware that I have not once in my time in Venice, or Burano at this point, seen a public restroom. Asking around a bit I found what must have been the only public WC in Burano, policed by a young gentleman. “None shall pass…[no pun intended]…until €1.50 is paid!” Heavens to Betsy (?), I have never paid for the privilege of ummm…you know. I had been warned, but still…something between injustice and embarrassment when handing over the euros. I find it somewhat fascinating that Europe has managed to commercialise something like this, but given the options are to pay or pop a squat in the street, well…I hope you know me well enough to know which way I went!

For those still guessing…I paid.

Burano is somewhere I would highly recommend. It’s got quite a different feel to that of Venice, and a couple of hours (including travel time) does it justice.
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Nap time beckoned back at the hostel, and on my return I met a fellow Australian traveller on his first day in Europe, Aman. We compared notes of our itinerary, agreed it was nap time, and after said nap, went up the Grand Canal in the early evening on the vaporetto for dinner in Rialto and to get a few pics of the canal after dark. Poor Aman got hassled by a few rose merchants (where’s my rose Aman!!!) whilst looking for a restaurant. We eventually found one called Carbonera, where we waited for a table behind a lovely Norwegian couple – Gaute and Gro – who we had a lovely evening with at the next table, discussing the economic climate of Norway and their time studying in Australia.

Dinner was BBQ king prawns with polenta, and although absolutely amazing, I still got food-envy over Aman’s giant cheese ravioli with pesto sauce, and downed half a carafe of house red (not too bad), and shared [another amazing!] tiramisu. The four of us were practically the last to leave at around 11pm, and it was back to St Mark’s on the boat for a last look at night, then back to the hostel.

Truly amazed at how much can be squished into a single day (including a two hour nap!) – the joy of this delightful little town.

Daily summary:
Glasses of wine consumed – 3
Gelato consumed – 1
Pasta consumed – 1
Pizzas consumed – 0
Alleyways in which I got lost – 382
Cost of popping a squat - €1.50

Spooning a goose….priceless!

Posted by jenniferhall 10:54 Archived in Italy Tagged burano venice boat colour italy basilica canal photos tourist colourful murano gelato doge's_palace tiramisu doge's leaning_tower doge vaporetto tiramisu_gelato lasagne selfie_stick executions Comments (0)

Day 2: A flood, St Mark's piazza and Coleono's balls

17 April 2016

sunny 22 °C

Venice – Day 2 – 17th April 2016

A simple brekky of croissants and jam await each morning, complete with freshly made cappuccino. The hostel is in a beautiful old building near the S. Zaccharia vaporetto stop, a short stroll up from St Mark’s piazza, perfect for jumping on the water bus to any one of the amazing locations around Venice. So first thing on the itinerary was a trip up the Grand Canal for an orientation with the famed water way. But no…I’m headed in the wrong direction towards Lido, an Island somewhere off to the East of Venice, for a very long round trip to no-where!

Back on track and I’m mesmerised by the buildings flanking the canal….some slightly askew after centuries sinking slowing into the soft foundations, all beautiful in a charming, old-world way. I made it to Rialto, who’s only fault is the out-of-place modern fashion advertisement on the bridge crossing the canal. Why!? Rialto is renowned for its maze of market streets and high fashion shops, not to mention the endless cafes, pizzerias, and restaurants. I’m sure it was only a moment ago I ate breakfast, but my Italian food-baby needed sustenance, and only a head-sized slice of fresh margarita would do, chased with a macchiato and cannolo e cioccianti (Nutella-esque chocolate-filled mini cannoli!). The German lady sharing the hostel dorm validated that ordering and consuming your espresso at the bar in the café is half the price of sitting down at a table, and feels decidedly European. The €1.50 for the best coffee so far was much more tolerable, and a far cheaper addiction to embark on over the next few weeks in Italy. A little lazy shopping followed, topping up my ‘European wardrobe’ with some funky blue and white patterned pants and a blue and white striped dress (can you see a theme emerging? I’m preparing for France!) at H&M, which is from what I can tell far better here than in…Joondalup.
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Breakfast take-2 and shopping now complete, it was time to meet the tour group for the skip-the-line St Mark’s Basilica and walking tour of Venice. I had grand plans of meeting lots of other solo travellers and instantly making new travel-buddies MeetUp style through these walking tours, and this one in particular came highly recommended. We met in the gardens behind St Mark’s piazza; beautiful, picturesque gravel-lined paths with a glimpse of the St Mark’s bell-tower through the foliage in the background. The day was another perfect, warm, spring day, about 22 degrees, hot sun, cool shade…just what I’d ordered. Sitting on the park bench waiting for the remainder of the group to arrive, a lady, also on the tour, sat next to me and promptly proclaimed she hated Venice! Cio che sulla terra! She was promptly scrapped from the ‘new found friends’ list.

Our tour guide, Andrea, wasted no time telling us that as it was a Sunday, unfortunately the basilica was closed to tourists for an impromptu religious occasion, and my heart sank. This was one of the highlights of my fantasy trip to Venice. Thankfully, I had a few days up my sleeve to check it out another time. The tour did, however, give us a brief history in front of the basilica in the piazza which is absolutely breathtaking, even from the outside. The enormity of St Mark’s piazza, the library, Doge’s Palace, and the basilica itself, shadowed by the bell tower opposite, is indescribable. And having a lifetime of imagery of the scene did nothing to suppress the feeling of standing there in person.
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Did you know…Venice floods up to 60 times per year, rendering places like the piazza inaccessible if not for the raised wooden walkways which are put into place and otherwise live scattered throughout the city? Did you know the basilica, gloriously embellished with out-of-this-world architectural pomp, is this way after numerous renovations over the centuries, and was originally a fairly plain looking brick number? Did you know the copper-cast horses which take pride of place on the terrace above the entrance, made in the fourth century, were stolen from Constantinople during the Crusades and brought to Venice under the order of the Doge, and were later stolen by Napoleon and taken to Paris to sit atop the Arc de Triomphe? And the horses collars were actually added to the horses after their arrival in Venice from Constantinople on account of the heads needing to be severed to facilitate transportation? And the ones you see on the façade of the basilica are replicas, with the original horses in the upper level museum of the basilica? A mighty impressive history of thievery.

The walking tour proceeded throughout the small ally-ways behind St Mark’s basilica, stopping at a few notable places, including a statue outside Venice’s ornate local hospital. The huge equestrian statue of Bartholomeo Coleono had the most humorous history of a sight so far: apparently the huge wealth of Coleono was bequeathed to the financially struggling city of Venice on the condition that an equestrian memorial of Coleono be erected in front of St Mark’s. The Venetians were not in the habit of individual memorials, however needed the cash, so agreed. On receiving the money and casting the statue, the cheeky Venetian government erected it in front of St Mark’s hospital, despite knowing the intention had been to have the statue in front of the basilica!
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Coleono had a pretty good sense of humour, and a pretty big ego (amongst other things, so I found out). One of the plaques on the side of the pedestal contains imagery of what appears to be three sets of pears. Ah, how lovely, Coleono respected the CSIRO’s 3 fruits 5 vegies rule too. But no, apparently the ego-driven Coleono was very proud of his…err…virile prowess and his third testicle!
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The tour ended and we were set free back into the labaryinth of Venice, where I promptly sought out my first pasta dinner. Not far from my hostel, a nice little square (from my first day with the saxophonist) housed an authentic looking restaurant where I ordered an afternoon spritz, Cianti wine, the most delectable baked scallops I’ve ever eaten, and a decidedly average mushroom pasta. I’ll have to get used to the literal explanations of food….for it was plain pasta with chopped up mushies! Not overly exciting, so I promised my tastebuds something better tomorrow. The meal was ridiculously expensive, circa Perth prices, so I’ve learnt to be more discerning in my selection of restaurants in Venice from now on.
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After an early evening nap (gosh the napping is good here!), I took myself out on a very romantic evening stroll through the centre of St Mark’s piazza. To my utter delight, it was partially flooded with a few inches of water, reflecting the thousands of lights around the perimeter of the piazza. Doge’s palace, the basilica, and library are breathtaking in the evening. I was suitably romanced. But my date was demanding, and insisted upon a stroll through an ally and a ridiculously expensive tiramisu and half bottle of moscato. Lucky she’s a cutie. And lucky the tiramisu is the best I’ve ever eaten…hot damn! I could get used to this…
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Daily summary:
Boat rides in the wrong direction – 1
Breakfasts consumed – 2
Glasses of wine consumed – 5
Gelato consumed – 0
Pasta consumed – 1
Pizzas consumed – 1
Hours spent lost in Venice – 5
Romantic dates with yours truly – 1
Euros spent on coffee - €1.50

Three bronze testes….priceless!

Posted by jenniferhall 10:44 Archived in Italy Tagged canals venice statue italy basilica romantic horse tour pizza bronze walking_tour pasta espresso date_night coleone testicles scallops Comments (0)

Day 1: Lost in Venice

16 April 2016

sunny 20 °C

Venice – Day 1 – 16th April 2016

Several people said the most exciting feeling of travel is the drive to the airport; the last step after the months of planning before the actual adventure begins. Quite true. A relatively normal, uneventful day otherwise, of work and packing, and repacking, and popping a few extra things in the bags, then taking a few more out… wash, rinse, repeat. The nerves mixed with excitement and elation, but played out in a rather calm demeanour, to the point where I could quite happily have stayed home a little longer to finish Pride and Prejudice.

And the next minute, I was on the plane! Not much to report there. The first leg from Perth to Doha, about 11 hours, was overnight and I thankfully slept about 8 of those hours with the help of a red vino and a couple of Kwells. Then a very short transit for the last leg, which almost didn’t happen on account of the incredibly long, vicious, crowd at the security point. My goodness, people are ruthless when you pop in the likelihood of missing a connecting flight. With only a few minutes to spare, I was thankfully not one of those to miss the flight, although I did have to run at [what I consider] full pelt to make it through the kilometre of Doha terminal (very futuristic, mind you, with driverless, silent monorails being tested to cover the expansive maze of gates and shops).

The second leg, Doha to Venice [Venezia!], was quicker than anticipated at 5 hours. And with a 2 hour nap thrown in, several attempts at getting engrossed in a movie and a delightful conversation with an Italian gentleman who was in Singapore to showcase his patisserie and gelato making tools, we were landing at Marco Polo in no time.

Flying in over Venice is incredible, and I’m still amazed at the picturesque, tiny town compressed with building upon building and tiny narrow canals and walkways I could see from the sky. So much smaller than I’d imagined, for some reason.

Venice is the one city on my itinerary where I’ve genuinely worried about the ease of getting to my accommodation from the airport, given the amount of luggage, the rumours of not being able to drag it on the cobblestone, the combination of road/train/water bus, and the knowledge that almost everyone gets lost in this labyrinth of a city. But, assuage your fears my friends, it was incredibly simple! The ATVO shuttle bus from the airport to the train station in Venice, costing €8, was waiting out the front of the airport exit, with tickets easily purchased at machines in the airport baggage collection. Transferring from the bus to the water bus also quite simple, with a quick detour to purchase a 72 hour water bus pass with unlimited access to any transport in that time for €40. Sounds expensive, but a couple of individual trips soon adds up! Last stop of the number 2 vaporetto and I was at the St Mark’s Square stop, and only a 3 minute walk from my hostel (yes, I’m braving the hostel to save some pennies…for wine…).
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I can’t get over the reality of being here. Instantly intriguing, with a perfect sunny day showcasing the colour and feel of the place. I spent the entire afternoon getting intentionally lost, wandering purposefully in no real direction, marvelling at the little canals, bridges, people, languages, architecture. One turn takes me into a small square with a few cafes, and a man playing ‘What a Wonderful World’ on a saxophone while kids kick a soccer ball around greets me. A quick macchiato perks me up a little…until the €3 payment! But I have since learnt that if you stand at the bar of the café to drink it, it’s about half the cost compared to sitting at a table. Duly noted.
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Dinner was a simple Caprese salad of fresh tomato and buffalo mozzarella drizzled with olive oil and herbs, accompanied by a glass of red…which was kindly refilled for no real reason by the waiter, from a local region. More wandering landed me at a gelato bar under the guise of asking for directions…walking out of there with Bacio (hazelnut) and a somewhat better understanding that I was precisely lost.

Daily summary:
Hours on plane – 16
Glasses of wine consumed – 4
Gelato consumed – 1
Pasta consumed – 0
Pizzas consumed – 0
Hours spent lost in Venice – 3
Euros spent on coffee - €3

First time seeing the canals of Venice – priceless!
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Posted by jenniferhall 10:22 Archived in Italy Tagged canals venice flight italy venezia getting_lost casanova naptime caprese_salad Comments (0)

The simple act of waiting

This time last year I was preparing for my first (of two) practice-solo-holidays to Bali. I wanted to equip myself with the radiant self-confidence, travel skills, and fine appreciation of balancing the utter euphoric pursuit of pleasure with the sense of personal responsibility and safety needed to embark on eight whole ‘solitary’ weeks in Europe. But as I hurtled* towards the brick wall on a hired scooter which would render me immobile on the remote Island of Lembongon for two days, personal responsibility and safety were not factoring highly on my priority list. My dreams of being the classy, independent traveller who didn’t require constant supervision were escaping me like so much blood from a minor flesh-wound. You can read about that trip here: http://jenniferhallbali.travellerspoint.com/

The second trip, last September, was to Singapore. This trip was to establish my tolerance for shared dormitory accommodation and travelling on the cheap, in order to get through 56 nights abroad without returning kidney-less to an ironic (but cheap) diet of Woolies Select kidney beans. As I sipped my $36.00 cocktail on the rooftop of Marina Bay Sands, indulged in a $35 fois gras wagyu beef burger, and eventually teared up at the accidental spillage of a $16 G&T I realised I had a lot to learn about travel frugality and trade-offs. Europe would need a bigger budget.

And now I’m at the pointy end, counting down the remaining 15 days and 4 hours to my 56 night European adventure through Italy, Spain, Croatia, and France. I’ve spent the last 12 months…nay, 16 years, in ‘travel anticipation’. Car explosions, home purchases, renovations, and 8 course degustations (oh, that rhymed) took financial precedence over travel in that time. But the time has come, and having done my first practice pack (check it out below, neat hey?), all there is to do now is wait. And as Khaled Hosseini said in ‘A Thousand Splendid Suns’ (great read, highly recommend); “Of all the hardships a person had to face, none was more punishing than the simple act of waiting.”

I have developed a comprehensive 12-page travel itinerary and general ‘staying alive’ manual; completed extensive literary and audio-visual research into some of the places I will be travelling to (i.e. I read the Italian part of ‘Eat Pray Love’ and watched ‘Midnight in Paris’); and have alerted the Italian and French authorities of my impending arrival for the purpose of stocking up on cheese, wine, and ‘doppia zero’.

I’m ready.

  • Actual speed was circa 3km/hr

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Posted by jenniferhall 03:00 Archived in Australia Tagged europe planning pre-trip getting_ready practice_pack Comments (0)

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