Random Musings

Pre-travel anguish

I was a minimalist before even knowing minimalism was a thing. Traveling light has always been my motto. I left home for my first solo backpacking trip in 2012 and, if we ignore my trip to China with 2 suitcases, I have been the picture child of minimalism since then, going everywhere with only a 32lt backpack.

However, for the last three and a half years my home base has been in a small town in Catalunya – Spain and I have slowly seen objects creep up around me. First it was an extra pair of shoes and clothes for work, then a few kitchen utensils to make cooking easier, new bed sheets because I simply didn’t like the ones the landlord provided, and plants. Many plants. I love plants and the house I’m currently in has such great natural light it would be a sin not to take advantage of it. I’ve bought big and small plants, indoor and outdoor ones, and particularly cacti and succulents.  I have amassed such a large collection of cacti and succulents I’m running out of space. 

Problem is, I’m now planning to leave Spain and I have too many things! – In case you are wondering the plan is to travel in Asia for 14 months. But I might make it longer. We never know where the road leads us.

Ok, so I have an amazing boss here in Spain who already said I could pack my stuff and he’d store it for me in one of the school’s storage areas until I decided to come back (and yes he also said I could have my job back when I did). This is all very good for clothes and kitchen utensils which I can fit into a box or two but what about my plants!? It’s not as if I can pack them into a box!

I’ve spent the last month trying to find a solution. Friends and acquaintances were happy to provide a home for my indoor ones but finding a home for the cacti and succulents has proven to be way harder. Not only do I have so many most people simply don’t have the space for all of them, but also, if I’m honest, I don’t want to just give them away. I’ve put so many hours into caring for them. Most mornings the first thing I do is go look at them. I know some of you are calling me crazy right now and are thinking they are only plants but I can’t help myself. Plus you’d be surprised how much they change daily, especially when they are flowering and I seem to always have one or two that are flowering. Anyways, last week I was starting to despair when a friend said she’d ask her father (whom I’ve never met) and he said he’d be happy to adopt them! He lives in a farm outside town, and has a large cacti collection himself, so really I couldn’t have asked for anything better! Somehow sometime in the next few weeks I will have to find time to go visit him and take the cacti and succulents so we can chose the best place to put them in. You can’t imagine my relief!!

Now my plant issues have been solved I have two months left until my flight out of Spain. Two months in which to focus on getting everything else ready. Oh, and the next two months also equal end of the school year (and all the stress that go with that) plus Cambridge exam sessions in full swing. i.e. working 6 days a week. In other words, I have 8 Sundays left in which to sort out the stuff I’m taking, the staff I’m storing and the stuff I’m simply donating. Shouldn’t be too hard right?

Random Musings

Interview

Last year, around October or November, I joined a facebook group of travel bloggers and before I knew it, one thing led to another and I was being interviewed by another blogger! The whole interview process was interesting and I have to admit I really enjoyed it so when she emailed me saying she was going to post it in her blog I was delighted.

Without further ado I leave you the link to her travelblog and my interview. Hope you like it!

Random Musings

A reading conspiracy

In my “who am I ” page I mention that I love reading yet I never mention books in my posts. The reason for this is because more often than not my reading is completely unrelated to my traveling. Nonetheless there have been times when I felt like an almighty power was conspiring to make me read books set in or related to the places I was visiting.

What do I mean? Well: Continue reading “A reading conspiracy”

Random Musings

Find a niche they say, its important they say

I’m sure I’m not the only one that read a million other blog posts and sites about blogging before starting to blog myself. It’s not so much that I didn’t know what a blog was about but that I wanted to do it right. I guess that’s just my modus operandi; I’ll read everything possible before making a decision (you should see me when I’m thinking about buying a new piece equipment).

Anyways, back to blogging, Continue reading “Find a niche they say, its important they say”

Mozambique · Random Musings

An ode to dhows

The world is made up of all types of people: there are train geeks, airplane aficionados, car enthusiasts and  boat admirers. I’ve never considered myself any of them. Ok, yes, given the choice I’ll take the train over a plane or car but that’s only because I like traveling slowly – and they are more environmentally friendly – not because trains are special. My point is I’ve never cared much for the method of transport. Instead its always been about the journey and the destination.

That all changed in 2016 when I went from Mozambique Island to a beach near Nacala by Dhow. Whats a Dhow? Dhows are the traditional sailboat of all fishermen and merchants in the Indian Ocean. Its been around for centuries. They are so emblematic of the Indian Ocean that the Dubai opera house is designed to look like one.  Continue reading “An ode to dhows”

Random Musings

Hostels. The good, the bad and the outstanding. What’s the difference?

Over the years I’ve stayed in countless hostels. – Yes, I’ve stayed in guesthouses, home stays, airbnbs, and the house of a cousin of a friend of a friend too but this post is about hostels so bear with me.  I’ve stayed in hostels so chic and dignified they would have given your average hotel a run for its money. Others so basic they were the definition of spartan. And one so vile I only spent a night there because I had absolutely no other option.

But mainly most hostels around the world are alright, whether you stay in a dorm or in private room they cater to what you really need when traveling: a place to put your things down and sleep.

So, if most hostels do a fine job of catering to the basic needs of any traveller why then are there some that years later I still remember fondly and when occasion has arisen have returned to, whereas others are quickly forgotten?

Continue reading “Hostels. The good, the bad and the outstanding. What’s the difference?”

Mozambique · Random Musings

A trip down memory lane

People form the north hemisphere have it all wrong regarding Christmas and New Year’s. I mean, ok, Christmas in winter is kind of cool but New year’s? Its horrid! I grew up in Mozambique, where the holidays are in the peak of summer. As kids we would go to a beach days after Christmas and depending on how long the adults were on holidays we’d stay there for a week or two or three. It was always the highlight of my summer holiday. In my late teenage years and early twenties I continued to do the same, only difference is I went with my boyfriend and friends instead of family.

Nothing can quite compare to those days lazying about under the sun. We would often leave “home” early in the morning and only return sometime mid-afternoon when we were hungry. Only to run back outdoors as soon as we’d finished eating. Sometimes the adults would organize an excursion to another beach nearby but mostly we were on our own, free to do as we pleased. Everyday a different adventure.

Continue reading “A trip down memory lane”

Random Musings · Spain

Daydreaming on a bus from Madrid to Granada

Earlier today I was sitting on a bus daydreaming and absorbing nature as it unfurled outside. In a brief moment of energy and inspiration I whipped out my laptop from my backpack and jotted down my thoughts as they occurred. Not really a great composition as my thoughts seemed to wander here and there and it doesn’t really end, I just stopped writing because I got dizzy… but I thought I’d share it with you anyway 🙂

Continue reading “Daydreaming on a bus from Madrid to Granada”

Random Musings

TOP 3 Flight misadventures and one surreal experience

Today I went for lunch with someone I had just met a few days previously and as always happens we got to talking about traveling, but this time instead of talking about destinations we talked about methods of transport. I started retelling different experiences I’d had on planes and it dawned on me that I have a LOT of extreme plane and airport stories!!

Here (in no particular order) I leave you with what I believe are probably my most extreme ones.

Continue reading “TOP 3 Flight misadventures and one surreal experience”

Random Musings

2014 travel surprises and 2015 expectations

2014 was an odd year, a year of extremes, when it rolled in I didn’t expect much from it travel-wise, at the most I though I would manage a few weekend getaways. What really happened though was that for the first semester I didn’t even manage a single weekend getaway but then the stars must have smiled on me or something because by December 31 I had been to 9 new destinations spread across Chile, Peru and Argentina. Continue reading “2014 travel surprises and 2015 expectations”