These are a few of my favourite things

After about a week of hibernation, I’m back and a working woman! I’m loving my media/public relations internship at Golf Canada and I’m looking forward to what’s to come. I’m learning the skills that I’ll need in the future, and the fact that I could begin this learning so soon after I returned to Canada is a total blessing. My parents think I have a guardian angel on my shoulder, and I’m starting to think they’re right.

I know, I know, I said you could expect some travel-related articles, and they’re coming! I’m currently battling a cold (which I’m certain is caused by the fact that I don’t belong in temperatures below 15 degrees celsius), and I’m using that as an excuse for now.

Since I’ve been back, everyone has asked me the same general questions: “What was your favourite spot?” or “how does it feel to be home?”. Well, I’ll tell you.

I loved my entire trip, and I even miss the little annoyances that travel brings. Picking a favourite country is like a picking a favourite child, in that I may love one slightly more than the other but to say it out loud is similar to blasphemy. I wouldn’t trade going to any of those countries for the world, and each taught me something that I couldn’t possibly learn in a book.

Okay, so here is my favourite child…okay so maybe my two favourite children.

I really loved Kenya, and I miss Thailand more than anywhere else. There you go.

Why? Well, I met people in Kenya that changed the way I look at life, and experiencing such a distinct culture like that of the Maasai was life-changing. I have a degree in anthropology, but I now know more about what it is to be outside my own culture in every way possible. I miss seeing every.single.child waving from the side of the road as I travelled in buses and cars down the bumpy streets. I miss the sepia tone of Nairobi, seemingly trapped in an antique photograph. I miss the incredible animals, and the breathtaking views. I miss a lot about Kenya, and I hope I’ll be back.

As for Thailand, I know I’ll be back, and I’m hoping it’ll be sooner than later. I travelled throughout that country and every city, town, and island was distinct and memorable. Bangkok is where I learned to get used to drinking out of buckets, and I don’t know if I’ve ever had more fun in a city. It was in northern Thailand where I volunteered at the elephant sanctuary, and that is my most cherished memory from my time abroad. I turned 22 in Koh Phanghan along with thousands of others at the Full Moon Party, and I’ve definitely never seen so much neon and probably never will again. I got certified in scuba diving in Koh Tao, and that’s where I seriously considered a career move that would allow me to experience those incredible rainbow sunsets on a daily basis.

That being said, India was the most colourful, sparkly, unique place that I’ve ever been, and I would recommend anyone to go. I think almost everyone who hasn’t been to India imagines something very different from what it is. Sure, there are huge slum areas and a lot of buildings aren’t exactly the cleanest in the world, but the cities are modern and pretty and much like many American and European cities.

Australia was incredibly fun and seeing old friends was another highlight of the trip. I faced my fears, sunbathed incessantly, and saw scenes that I’ve only seen in movies. Camping on Fraser Island was one of the most fun experiences of my life, and I don’t know if I’ll ever have to watch out for dingos on my way to the bathroom ever again.

New Zealand was epic, from the snowcapped mountains to the ice blue streams and endless forests. The quaint little towns that dot the countryside feel like home, no matter how far from your real home you are. I’m pretty sure I’ll never mistake a field full of noisy sheep for a human party again, and if I do than I’ll know I’m back in New Zealand. Meeting Kiwis made it clear just how the Flight of the Concords got their sense of humour, and I also kind of miss eating kiwi fruit on a daily basis.

Hawaii was a great transition back into the ways of North America, with the palm trees, pools, and weather that calmed my homecoming nerves. I’m looking forward to exploring the other islands of Hawaii in the future.

As for that other question, “how is it to be home?”. Well, it’s nice. Usually, I immediately want to fly the coop when I’m back in the suburbs after a few months of freedom, but this time it feels right. I’m happy to be back with the people that have been by my side for years, and there’s nothing like seeing your beloved pets after a few months without them. I’m so glad I got to spend the holidays with my family, and I think the high from my travels will last at least a few more months. Despite the fact that I’m a planner by nature, I’m totally okay with not knowing where I’ll be in a year from now. I think that’s due to the fact that I never knew what was coming next during my travels (for the most part), yet another benefit of travel that I didn’t anticipate.

Besides a few travels across this continent in 2012, I have no big trips planned, and I’m okay with that. I’m not done travelling, nowhere near it, but I’m finally okay with waiting for the next trip of a lifetime on my bottomless bucket list.

If you’re considering travelling, do it. Don’t let anything get in the way. If you don’t have any pressing need to leave the country, don’t. ¬†Travelling isn’t for everybody, and that’s okay.

As for me, I will visit every continent before I’m 30 years old. I’ll see the sparkling white of Santorini, Greece and the vibrant greens of the Inca Trail. I’ll trek to Everest base camp and to the summit of Kilimanjaro. I’ll do everything I can with the time I have, and I’ll always remember that time is never guaranteed.

Sure, I’m idealistic and I have big dreams, just like every other happy twenty-something on Earth. The thing is, I now know that big dreams are possible, and I’ll never stop pushing until I reach the bottom of my bottomless bucket list.

I know I say it every time but, I’ll be back soon!

Bye for now.

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