This week’s blog post is dedicated to one of my oldest and closest friends, who is about to embark on the experience of a lifetime so most of this will be directed to her but, hey you other people might get something from it! Bon voyage, Helen!
The months that lead up to my move to Barcelona were nothing particularly unusual or anxiety inducing. I had been accepted for my TEFL course way back in the February and wasn’t actually leaving until the end of September, it was all so far away. Four weeks before I was set to leave with flights booked, course paid for and accommodation sorted I still wasn’t quite feeling it, it didn’t really feel like I was leaving to start a new life in a new place where I knew nobody but that’s what was about to happen. It wasn’t until the few days before my flight that nerves set in, mostly just my fear of flying to be honest because really, deep down I was just excited.
In the time that lead up to me leaving I had so many people call me brave for doing such a thing and ask me if I was scared and I thought it was odd at first that I kept getting asked these things because I wanted to do this. That is why I applied for it in the first place and planned it all meticulously for months before I even applied for my course. This is what is important to remember about times like this, times where you are about to throw yourself into the unknown and feel that twinge of nervousness. You have to remind yourself that no one is forcing you to do this, you chose to do this and in a year from now you’re going to get to say to people who you have travelled to all these amazing places, met some incredible people and maybe best of all, you got paid for it at the same time. Doing something like moving to another country, travelling or (as you’re going to do, Hel) working on a cruise ship is going to be one of those things that you look back and realise how it helped shape you and make you grow. Isn’t that insane? Isn’t that beyond exciting to know what lies ahead of you is not only going to give you some unforgettable memories but serve as a way to better yourself even more?
Personally, I know that I felt like I had already come so far before my own little adventure; I wasn’t sure how much further I really had to go from there but experiences like this will propel you towards who you are meant to be, that best version of you, in ways you cannot fathom yet. You are going to have a wonderful time, I can guarantee you that and I can also guarantee that home will still be waiting for you when you return and we will all be loving and missing you from it.
Last week, I drove up to Scotland with my parents to visit family for a few days. As there was a surprise birthday party to prepare for that I couldn’t really help with, I escaped to Glasgow city centre for the day to do some of the things I hadn’t had a chance to do on my previous visits. This (obviously) began with a trip to a coffee shop in the West End, a part of the city I hadn’t explored too much in the past. I chose to visit Avenue Coffee based off the good reviews I had seen online and its location next to the Botanic Gardens; my destination for the day despite the unsurprisingly dreary weather. Continue reading A Day in Glasgow
When it comes to travelling I normally try to go somewhere new because if I am going to put myself through the trauma of getting myself on a plane it may as well be for a place I have never been to before but sometimes holidays like that don’t feel like a holiday at all. When you land in a new city, desperate to see the sights and try out some new food, while figuring out where you are staying and generally gathering your bearings it doesn’t leave much time for relaxing in the end. Luckily, I get at least one week of R&R a year when I head to the center of France with my parents (and special guests sometimes) and proceed to eat my weight in croissants and power through as many books as possible. Continue reading Rest & Recuperation in Limousin
With this week being Easter holidays I had a lot of free time on my hands… well, I always have a lot of free time on my hands but this week I had a lot more than usual. I decided that this gave me the perfect excuse to do some things in and around Barcelona that I hadn’t had a chance to do yet and the top of my list was visiting the Dalí Theatre-Museum in Figueres. I did a little research beforehand but I didn’t want to spoil too much of the experience so apart from the museum opening times, ticket prices and how to get there I knew nothing about Figueres or the museum before I went, which I think was a good way to do it. This trip was also the first I have taken completely by myself to a new place, which is somewhat surprising as I am the type of person who enjoys being alone but I guess sharing experiences with other people is also very rewarding. Continue reading The Dalí Theatre-Museum in Figueres
Now I know that you’d think working as few hours as I do a week and getting to live in the beautiful city of Barcelona would mean that I’d never feel the need for a holiday but sometimes, you just want to get out of your surroundings and have a break – even if that means going an even busier, louder and drearier city. With my Matt and Hayley (my brother and sister-in-law) living in London, I’ve had the opportunity to visit the capital quite a few times but this trip was different. I was really excited for several reasons including getting the chance to see my friends/family, meeting my new cat-nephew, Xenopus and most of all not really having a plan for much of anything meaning I had the freedom to do things as and when I pleased instead of trying to cram in a lot over a few days. This trip was my mini-holiday and one of the best presents Matt and Hayley have ever gotten me and trust me when I say they are the best gift-givers; they set the bar pretty high when they gave me a vintage Underwood typewriter for my 21st.
Continue reading A Few Days in London
small refuge that was made for stray cats by the beach
This week, I was lucky enough to have my parents fly over for a two-day visit in which we managed to pack in a trip to Sagrada Familia, the Botanic Gardens and Sitges! When I first arrived in Barcelona I was told by the person who helped me get from the airport to my accomodation to visit Sitges but for some reason or another I kept putting it off in favour of doing things inside the city or for visits to Monserrat, Montpellier and Munich (posts about all three can be found here). The idea to visit Sitges with my parents came about quite serendipidoulsy as my Mum was told by a friend that Sitges was a nice town and after she accidently posted about it on my Facebook thinking it was a private message I thought a little trip out whilst they were here was a no-brainer.
Continue reading Weekend Excursions: Sitges