Aloha Hawaii

America

If I had been starting to feel any end of adventure blues, it was soon stamped out of me when I stepped off the plane in Hawaii into 30 degree sunshine and air that was wet to breathe. 

By the time I saw the hotel room at the Modern Honolulu, I was basically starting a whole new type of holiday. One that involved long and lazy days by the pool drinking pina coladas and playing candy crush saga. 

Uninspired to do much other than bask in this lifestyle for a while, Kristy and I headed strait to the supermarket for nibbles and tequila ($20 a bottle unfortunately for my liver)before sitting by the room window overlooking the ocean and debriefing all the things we had done in the past month. 

Here we stayed until the nibbles had been polished off when we migrated to the pool to finish off the first afternoon in Hawaii. 

Sometimes I second guess my life choices, especially when I am travelling and become removed from my everday situations. Here is a snap of me not questioning the choice to order a frozen lime and coconut mojito.

Barcelona, Spain

Europe

On the way to Barcelona, I had breakfast in France, lunch in Andorra and dinner in Spain. Pretty cool eh?

We had a long drive, but the scenery through the Pyrenees was incredible and luckily a good duty free shopping stop in Andorra. The Bahamas of Europe. And by this I mean a tax free haven for filthy scammers. Only 36% of Andorra’s population are actually citizens. Due to the crap exchange rate, the prices weren’t that good for me because our dollar isn’t strong enough against the euro, so essentially almost everything was the same price or more expensive than at home. Luckily I still found things to buy. Phew. I would have been so sad to have a shopping shop and not buy anything!!! Crises averted.

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Looking back through the Pyranees

We continued into Spain later in the afternoon and did a short driving tour around the city to get orientated. Honestly I still felt disorientated but it was nice to see everything that I knew I wouldn’t have time to do today.

Dinner was a proper tapas restaurant with, which I dug into very happily. In addition to that, the drink at choice here is sangria. You can imagine the sheer pleasure it gave me when I discovered that they didn’t come in anything less than half a litre. I immediately resigned myself to the fact I would probably spend most of our time here eating tapas while sipping enormous drinks. As a side note, they also free pour. Honestly, I think I must have Spanish heritage because I just felt so okay with this culture.

The next morning I got up early and decided I would walk from one end of the city to the other in an attempt to see everything. Unfortunately some some of the museums, were closed as it was Monday. In lieu of these I went to the Sagrada Famiglia church, as it is the weirdest piece of architecture ever, but so so cool to look at. One side is made to look like it’s melting.

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Melting church (Sagrada Familia).

I then walked down La Rumbla (stopped for sangria) and to the harbour where I checked out the maritime museum and took a boat out of the harbour to get a more interesting view of the city. We cruised around via the beach and even though it was quite a short trip, it was so good to be back on water and away from the city.

I was so proud of myself, because after walking over 15 km, I decided to take the metro as far back towards the hotel as possible. As it turned out, that wasn’t far, but the key point here was that I negotiated the metro. Which is all in Spanish.

Tonight we had to say goodbye to our friend Kevin who was abandoning us to go back to uni in Wales, but of course we decided to celebrate our time together by drinking more Sangria and going to a fantastic Spanish restaurant. It was definitely the best meal we have had so far and a big group of us sat outside and just ate and chatted late into the evening. Perfect way to finish his tour, and perfect way to end our time in Barcelona.

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Making a getaway

Hello 2014!

Cruising, travel

I don’t know what you were doing on New Years Eve 2013, about to step into the unknowns of 2014, but here is what I was doing.

#Hello2014

#Hello2014

I had a Corona in my hand on deck 12 of the Pacific Pearl, in the middle of the Pacific ocean. I was with a stranger named Luke and we were sitting on the pool deck soaking up the most insane new years party I had ever been to. There were over 1500 people counting in the new year with us and on the stroke of midnight we shared a not so sneaky kiss, hair blowing in the tropical wind, wearing my sparkliest dress and highest heels. It was glamourous, and the epitome of freedom, love and what I hope 2014 will be all about.

New found friends Like and Eddy. Too busy loving our lives to care about anything else in the world at this moment.

New found friends Luke and Eddy. Too busy loving our lives to care about anything else in the world at this moment.

On the morning of January 1st 2014, we pulled into the Isle of Pines, New Caledonia. I woke up to a postcard. We transferred to a smaller boat and headed out to a little place called turtle bay, aptly named for the abundance of turtles. Our guide, Max, told us he would do his best to spot a turtle for us. Not long after this promise, he got up, dived off the boat, and resurfaced with the most beautiful sea turtle. I jumped into the water that felt and looked unbelievably like a heated pool, and frolicked for over 40 minutes with this turtle. We pottered about the islands in our tin boat, walked the white sandy beach on Brush Island and snorkelled the bright barrier reefs, scattered along the coastlines.

Arriving in the Isle of Pines, looking all tropical and shit.

Arriving in the Isle of Pines, looking all tropical and shit.

 

Star, the sea turtle, posing while I do the tourist photo before jumping in to dote on the little flippered cutie.

Star, the sea turtle, posing while I do the tourist photo before jumping in to dote on the little flippered cutie.

Sometimes I kick myself when I see sights like this and realise it's reality, and I am living in it.

Sometimes I kick myself when I see sights like this and realise it’s reality that I am lucky enough to be living in.

I spent a good portion of the day being grateful for bringing in 2014 in a way that set a more positive tone than any year yet. Today was what 2014 means to me. Happiness, self indulgence, beauty, excitement, and wonder. Today was a good day.

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