A little sneak of what I did.
Anybody knows this old Joni Mitchell song?
“Come with me
I know the way” she says
“It’s down, down, down the dark ladder”
Strangers of all levels are friends you’ve never met. At the idea of meeting new people I used to panic and worry about letting them come into my life, and for the past year, despite abundances of travel buddies, there are times I’d choose to explore new places alone. However I’ve come to be a bit less anal and picky of friendships. Fleeting memories with anybody are accumulative. I hold true to viewing life as much too short to make enemies, or to foul up your heart with plotting to manipulate or deceive. Be it in the workplace or out in the streets, surrendering your truest intents clears your path toward disarming the most guarded strangers. In short, hold up those white flags and declare yourself harmless. Lately, I’ve been surprised by amazing things that have happened to me.
Sydney Harbour on a Monday morning: the paths boomed with street artists, food vendors, school-kids on excursions, friendly Australians and camera-bearing, furiously-snapping tourists. City-hopping – the nomad meets metropolitan – has come to be my favourite past-time. We caught a bus from our hotel at Hilton George Street to Opera Quays, and enjoyed a long walk to Opera House, the bridge, and back. From the Circular Quays we boarded a ferry to Dahling Harbour, where the Maritime Museum was booming with people climbing aboard a war-time naval ship. Despite the really short stay in Sydney, we caught the city bug. I love the vibrance, the pulsating energy, the drive that makes people wanna come back.
Headed for Thailand’s Koh Samui with my favourite travel pals in exactly 3 days’!! ❤
So stoked about scuba-diving, and living the island life in my friends’ resort. Also can’t wait to start partying at the local hotspots on Chaweng Beach.
On our last trip to Koh Samet, another offshore party island in the Gulf of Thailand, we spent our afternoons snorkelling, swimming, speed-boating, tanning, scuba-diving, Thai-massaging, getting our asses bruised from bumpy rides on the island lorry and eating the freshest seafood the island has to offer.
Though we won’t be in time for Koh Samui’s famous full-moon parties, my local Thai friends insist that the island’s year round nightlife is insane. I’ll believe when I see it!
The plethora of alfresco dining choices had me drawn in. The colourful interior beyond its ‘landmark purple clock’ delivered its promise of an eclectic shopping mix, right up the alley where London’s best bars and restaurants laid in wait. St Christopher’s Place sits at the heart of the West End and can be found between Selfridges and Bond Street station. I’m still a big fan of Pret A Manger’s latte, salad and sandwiches.
Slow and romantically lone walk along the Swan River waterfront overlooking South Perth. Sea breeze and its accompanying calm did wonders for the incessant noise in my head, as did the pull of my heart in various messy directions. Loving the bright blue skies, crystal seas and its zen. This is nature at its best; beauty speaking the loudest as it is silent.
Four hours in a confined train carriage, and us 3 travel-buddies have seen boredom right down to the essence of jumpy, restless psychosis. Especially since we were headed for Venice! As our train pulled away from the city of Milan, across Po River and into Venice, I had this pretty clip captured and filed away with the memories.
In the recent Anholt-GFK City Brands Index, London was voted the best city in the world, knocking Paris off the top spot. The champion city is then followed by Sydney, Paris, New York and Rome.
I’ve managed to snap these 10 gorgeous pictures as timeless evidence of London’s brilliance! ❤
Published September 28th 2012 by Gemelli Press LLC
“It was this trip, during which I learned to say “yes” to every adventure, during which I’d felt romance and trusted my instincts, that convinced me that if I could muster up a little courage, I could chuck my legal briefs and follow my heart. To write. And to write in Italy.”
Taking the first step in solo travel takes a hell lot of guts…especially so if you’re starting over in an entirely new place, with no friends, bad grasp of the native tongue and just your gut instincts to trust.
Jennifer Criswell earns my respect – when she finally leaves New York and moves to Montepulciano, Tuscany, with her dog Cinder, she throws herself into the thick of it all, tries it all, makes many memorable mistakes while living it up in Tuscany.
In reality, life never comes in pretty packages. Cultural difference and language barriers aside, she meets roadblocks such as terrible landlords, monetary shortages, food crises and many more. Finding new friends and strengths in unexpected places is what makes her experiences worth reading about.
Despite being a ‘somewhat disastrous quest’, the spirit of finding yourself isn’t about being in the most glamorous places, but about discovering your inner will to make it anywhere, no matter how terrible the circumstances. I thoroughly enjoyed her tales of Tuscany, a truly beautiful Italian destination of many dreams!
At Least You’re in Tuscany: A Somewhat Diastrous Quest for the Sweet Life is Jennifer Criswell’s memoir about her first year in Montepulciano during which her dream of expat life meets the reality of everyday challenges and results in sometimes funny, often frustrating, always lesson-filled situations.
Jennifer Criswell’s move from New York City to Tuscany was not supposed to go like this. She had envisioned lazy mornings sipping espresso while penning a best-selling novel and jovial Sunday group dinners, just like in the movies and books about expatriate life in Italy. But then she met the reality: no work, constant struggles with Italian bureaucracy to claim citizenship through her ancestors, and, perhaps worst of all, becoming the talk of the town after her torrid affair with a local fruit vendor.
At Least You’re in Tuscany is the intimate, honest, and often hilarious tale of Jennifer’s first year in Montepulciano. During that time, her internal optimist was forced to work overtime, reminding her that if she were going to be homeless, lonely, and broke, at least she would be all those things—in Tuscany. Jennifer’s mantra, along with a healthy dose of enthusiasm, her willingness to embrace Italian culture, and lessons gleaned from small-town bumblings, help her not only build a new, rewarding life in Italy but also find herself along the way.
1. Colour Block Clashin’
By Rachel-Marie Iwanyszyn
2. Goth Preppy
By Ebba Zingmark
3. Delicately Grungy
By Julia Coldfront
4. Aztec and Leather
By Kasia Gorol
5. Punk Denim
By Lua P
Embedded in the Covent Garden shopping district, surrounded by a tourists’ market, chain of food joints and restaurants as well as pubs and bars, it’s really convenient to pop by for a sugared quickie.
Fun fact: Maldives is the smallest Asian country in both population and land area. Also the planet’s lowest country, with an average ground level of 1.5 metres (4 ft 11 in) above sea level, forecasts of inundation is a great concern.
Attended an event for Silver Lining by Atkinsons London at the Bacchanalia this afternoon.
My mom adores their emblematic fragrance, the 24 Old Bond Street; I’m pretty glad she will keep it because it’s a little too smoky (oak-casked whisky, as described) for my daily use.
However I do like their tagline:
“Drawing on 200 years of English eccentricity, style and impeccable manners, Atkinsons is now ushering in a new century of perfume snobbery”
I was more taken by Fashion Decree, a lighter fragrance of silk tree blossom and patchouli.
There was this intriguing book in the gift bag which capture my attention for an hour on the ride home…
From asparagus to zebra crossings, via email, formal dinners, political correctness and sneezing – a complete guide to behaving.
What a book! I salute the British pride in upholding fine mannerisms.
Unbolt your main door and this is what you see
This world is all kinds of amazingIt’s positively exhilarating to know that the beauty of Maldives is right at your doorstep
Complete with sea breeze and utter, remote peace.
I’ll always be in love with the skies and the sea.
Even the visitor lodge is so tastefully built with an air of zen.
None shall disturb your peace.
My room was closest to the lodge! Super safe and all, I didn’t feel scared to stay in that hugeass room at all.
Can’t stop reiterating how much I love the Maldives.
How could anyone not fall to her charms?
Definitely gonna be back for more.
Does anyone wanna come scuba-dive here with me?
Describe the taste of mint, without using the words blue, green, cool or fresh.
No, you can’t use “minty” either. — Sarah Selecky
You place it gently at the tip of your tongue, slowly wrapping it in a fold, delivering it into the moist cave between your lips as you clench your teeth shut. You close your eyes to savor the first burst of sharp flavor and here comes your first thought – it tastes like the sea on the cusp of summer’s noon.
Its circular body is flipped through and through, crashing against the banks of your teeth like a pebble in restless tides, chipping away each time it hits the shores. Alongside the summer heat, it glows with a force. It is a piece of invitation – come to the sea where it is cold, and I will melt the heat away.
At its peak, it throbs with torridity, fighting with a fervor to be scorchingly cold.
At the close of the day it is chipped to its core, releasing feeble spurt of tangy tremor as the setting sun retreats.
Its purpose dutifully served, it fades to nothingness.
Honestly would love to stay on this island and work for peanuts,
if it means that I get to see this every day of my life.
Also, Kurumba Maldives is a crazy good place for getaways! It has 2 outdoor freshwater pools, 3 tennis courts, a yoga pavillion, spa and a fitness centre. Snorkeling was insanely fun, because you don’t even need to be a good swimmer – the crystal clear water in the lagoon sort of buoys you up naturally.