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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


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

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