Each day, I drive 100 miles to and from my job. With 500 new miles on my odometer at the end of every week, I don’t find myself longing to travel as much as I’m used to. I’m already in transit quite enough these days, thankyouverymuch.
Hi friends, readers, expats! Before I jump into the second half of my long-weekend recommendations, a quick update on my life: I got a job! A real-life, full-time, honest-to-goodness job working as an editor (something I loooovvvvve). A job with a regular paycheck to pay for travel. A job with ample vacation time. I couldn’t be happier! With this latest transition, however, comes fewer blog updates, as I’m sure you’ve noticed. But even though I might not post as often, I’m not going away. (-:
If you caught my last post, you know it was inspired by my friends over at Adventuring Pandas asking me where they should go in 2017. I had more ideas than one post could accommodate, so I broke it into two halves. Voila: the second half!
My friends over at Adventuring Pandas recently asked me where they should go in 2017. The answer is wherever they can get themselves to, but even after I’d narrowed it down from there, I realized the answer required more than just a Facebook reply—and besides, many of my readers are probably also planning their 2017 adventures.
What follows is the first half of a collection of places I’ve visited in Europe that would make a decent long weekend, with at least one reason why I loved it! The second half of the list will follow in a few days.
What made you want to travel?
For me, it was learning about the Loch Ness Monster. In the middle of a childhood defined by fiction books, I distinctly remember sitting at a table in the back of my third-grade classroom, looking at the famous surgeon’s photo in a book, and realizing this was a place that really existed (even if maybe the monster did not).
Twelve years later on a cold and rainy February afternoon, I stood on the banks of Loch Ness itself, looking for the monster and drinking some tea. Life rewards us that way sometimes.
Last year you learned the lengths I would go to for a grape pie.
It’s not just the pie. It’s the experience. And this year, I added another country to that experience.
My BeFF and I went first to Canada, spending a few days in Welland, Ontario, before returning to Pennsylvania via Monica’s Pies in Naples, NY.
We had sunshine, wine, freighters, and a koi pond on our jam-packed yet relaxing three-day vacation.
I’ve been getting a lot of questions about what I’m up to. The fact is, I’m internally singing Ariel’s famous song from The Little Mermaid:
I wanna be where the people are!
Yep, I’ve been back in Hometown for a little over a year now, spinning off to travel here and there during the meantime, but it’s high time to get myself back into a more urban environment.
To that end, I’m applying to jobs in cities and hoping for the best. Cities with international airports. Cities with sidewalks. Cities with bike paths.
But I won’t lie. It’s discouraging waiting for replies that never come from the companies I apply to. If you’ve been in the job market at all in the past ten years, you know the feeling. You send off 100 cover letters and are lucky to get even one clear rejection, let alone an interview.
What’s a woman to do in this period of waiting?
I know, I know, it has nothing to do with writing OR travel OR tea OR EVEN the occasional cat. But I’ve finally finished the flagship chicken oven mitts for my Etsy shop and am reopening it this weekend.
Besides these adorable little bok-boks, I’ll have some yoga mat totes for sale, some shopping bags, and a handful of other things planned but not yet posted. Go check it out and, if you’re feeling flush, make a purchase to help me support myself while I await job responses and dream myself into a fancy place I’ll never be able to afford in Queens or Philadelphia Old City or Over the Rhine.
And if you happen to have a job in writing, editing, instructional design, tech comm, or communications, hit me up for my résumé and see if I could fit the bill. I work hard to feed this travel addiction!
Ever since I got back from Scotland, friends have been asking me, “Where next?”
Well, for now, nowhere that requires money. But in the future, I think my next big adventure will feature Canada, Latin America, or the southwestern US.
If you respond with, “African or European?” you’d be corrected by my friends this morning, as I was.
“The line is actually ‘the airspeed velocity’,” they said.
But out of curiosity, we decided to look it up. And to our astonishment, everywhere the internet asks about the terminal velocity of a swallow, the internet replies: Don’t you mean airspeed?
No, internet. No we do not. So we figured it out. Because this is what my friends do on a rainy Saturday morning.
Here, for your Monty Python-inspired yet strictly speaking off-script queries as to the terminal velocity of a sparrow, I bring you … The Math.
If you’ve been following me on Facebook or Twitter, you might know I recently spent some time in Philadelphia. My first day there, while waiting for my cousin (of October 27th fame) and her fiancé to get home from work, I stopped by The Continental for coffee.
But in Philly, nothing stands on its own. There’s always history. And on the Continental building was a Historic Sites in Journalism plaque explaining that, way back in the late 18th century, this was John Dunlap’s printing shop.
What, you don’t know John Dunlap? He’s only the printer who first stamped out distributable copies of the Declaration of Independence.
As a big fan of thrift stores and ApartmentTherapy.com, I love seeing how people make something beautiful out of what was once far from it. To understand where I’m coming from, please bear with a bit of a world history lesson, then a personal history reflection, before I get into the Death Strip.