Scotland with Caity

One of the last big trips we took during our study abroad semester was up to Scotland.
We had just came back from three weeks of backpacking through Europe,
so to say the least – we were EXHAUSTED.
We literally landed in London on Friday morning and were set to trek up to Scotland on Saturday morning,
so at the time, the trip did not sound so appealing.
Which is so shameful to say because Scotland was one of the greatest trips we took.
The most beautiful scenes I may ever see in my life.
If I could recommend a place to go, it would be here.
We made a short visit in Edinburgh,
and then made our way up to Loch Ness where we heard all about the mythical creature
who our guide had apparently seen with his own eyes over ten times.
I will say though,
he had enough facts and support
to make me want to believe that this thing was real.
Unfortunately we didn’t get to see ‘Nessie,’
but I’m pretty sure the next time I’m up there it’ll happen..
We made our way up to the Isle of Skye into the Highlands.
Every stop we made was another incredible view -
I honestly can’t even explain how gorgeous it was, and my photos absolutely do not do it justice either.

 

We ended the trip at Loch Sligachan.
There is an old belief that if you stick your face in the water for seven seconds,
you will be blessed with eternal youth.
So naturally, in 40 degree weather with our peacoats and scarves
we were all set to submerge our faces in this ice bath.
No, I never question my life choices – why would you ask that?
And yes I do, in fact, still look like that.
I know what you’re thinking – ‘OBVIOUSLY Caity .. it’s only been three years..’
But no. That’s not why.
It’s because I stuck my face in a freezing lake in the middle of Scotland, actually.



Cinque Terre with Caity

If you’ve ever studied abroad in the U.K.,

you’ll know that their education is very light.

You go to class for about 10 weeks, and are finished by the end of March.Well, study abroad runs until the end of May, so what do you expect we do until then?

Travel – did I need to tell you that?

We did a ‘mini backpack adventures’ for about 3 weeks in April,

and one of our mid-way stoops was Cinque Terre, Italy.

The only way I can really describe this place is an exact replica

of the photoshop paradise postcards you see in the grocery story.

Cinque Terre is composed of 5 small villages on the west coat of Italy.
Each village is able to be reached by a train,
but there are also hiking trails across the cliffs.
It is a couple hours of hiking, and I’ll be honest, sometimes it’s not easy.
That might be because it’s about 6 miles or so, or because we did not come prepared and were hiking in flats. Either one.
But the beauty of what you’re seeing truly overcompensates any pains you are feeling.
I knew it was going to be pretty, but I didn’t realize how ridiculously stunning it would actually be.
The paths are filled with love locks, photos and statues, and some of the most amazing views you will ever see.
We stopped in Vernazza for some pizza and wine because well, Italy.

And yes – it is better than anywhere else.

And of course gelato.

But we stopped in every city for gelato.

When you’re in Italy, five gelattos is normal.

Trust me.

I wouldn’t recommend this city enough.

Spend the morning hiking the trails and the afternoon laying by the ocean.
With a gelato, of course.



European Adventures

Today is a Themed Day for Travel Tuesday!  I also have Caity, one of our lovely #TravelTuesday co-hosts guest posting on the blog! As always we have our link up below so you can join your blog post and hop around! Remember to share the love in the comments and make so friends a long the way.  Without further adieu here is Caity!

 

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Hi readers! I’m Caity, blogging over at Where The Heart Is

and currently co-hosting Travel Tuesday with these lovely ladies.I’m currently figuring out life in London, but I blog about that enough on my own page.

I’ll be popping in over here every now and then this month featuring some of my favorite places
I was fortunate enough to visit during my study abroad semester.
That semester changed my life – can you tell? I moved to London!
There are so many great memories, so why not reminisce a bit?
A little nostalgia never hurt no one…

———————————————————————–One of the first European adventures I took was during our ‘independent study’ week,

which is actually just a second Spring Break. I know – London schooling is awesome.
We literally booked the trip a week before, which started the trend of travel spontaneity
and made study abroad that much more thrilling.
We decided on Prague for three days, then Paris for three days.
I hadn’t known anything about Prague, but had been recommended to visit more than anywhere else.
So why not?
We found a hostel that had the deal “girls staying 2 nights get an extra night for free.”
Naturally you would think this may put us off of this place a bit,
but all we saw was YOU CAN STAY HERE FOR FREE and said “sure! what’s the worst that can happen?”
Well I’ll tell you – it was having the owner ask you for drinks every night you were there.
Anyways.
It turned out to be one of my favorite trips.
Prague is such a beautiful place, I discovered my love for thick hot chocolate, and we experienced a great nightlife with one of the best bar crawls I’ve ever been on where I also had my first taste of absinthe.
Unfortunately, there were no green fairies.

After this trip, we had one day at home in London to do as little as we could,
and then we were off to Paris the next day!
We opted for a Eurostar hotel+train deal as it was surprisingly cheaper than a hostel and a train ticket.
It was great – walking out of our hotel was into an amazing little market with a great view of the Eiffel Tower.
We mastered the ‘walk 235235 miles in one day and see everything’
and managed to do a little round trip from our hotel to the Eiffel Tower, down Champs-Elysees to the Lourve and Notre Dame.
Paris wasn’t my favorite place for other reasons, but I was so glad to have been able to make a visit
and see the gorgeous city!

It’s strange to finally see things that you’ve seen in photographs for so long.
You kind of have to stare at them for a while and have that whole ‘this is really happening’ moment.
I still have those quite a bit, actually..
Happy traveling!
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A great look at what Caity shares on her blog. See what she shared for the Themed Travel Tuesday post on her blog today:  Where The Heart Is



Themed Travel Tuesday | April ’15

whytravel

Next week will be our next themed Travel Tuesday. One of our amazing co-hosts, Caity, has chosen:

“Where You Came From & Why You Left”

Next week you can share a bit about yourselves through where you come from and what you love about it.  Then also share what prompted your decision to leave, travel, move, whatever it may be!

We look forward to reading and sharing your posts next week!

 

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Where You Should Live Based on your Myers Briggs Personality Type

WHEREYOUSHOULDLIVEMEYERSBRIGGSHave you ever put in any thought that your personality could be pointing you to a specific location on the globe?  As a nomadic child by birth and with the label now as a Third Culture Kid, I do not find one specific place my ‘home’.  I instead take all the places I have ever lived or spent a significant part of my life and hold ownership in them.  Before I knew what a Third Culture Kid, or TCK, was I used to say I was from ‘no where’ and now as an Adult TCK, or ATCK, I say I am from ‘everywhere’.  Still I wish there was some place that we all without homes could feel at home.  Though my quick answer to that has always been the airport.  A place of comfort.  Then I stumbled upon this website that took your Myers Briggs personality type and paired it up with one place on the globe.  Of course I had to know where I was destined.

I had previously taken the the personality quiz in University back in 2001 and then had taken it again 2013 for my Blogtober post, both times getting ENFP.

As I scrolled down for answers I started getting sad that I was not getting the other cities I was seeing listed. My personality type ended up being at the end and as I drew close I was actually dreading what would be there waiting for me.  What could be left?  That sounds really silly, but it shows how much I was holding on to this personality matched with a city idea.

san-franc(source)

ENFP – San Francisco, USA

“ENFPs barf rainbows. San Francisco barfs rainbows. It’s a perfect fit. But in all seriousness, the liberal values of San Francisco have been attracting NF types for decades. Known for its hippy-dippy attitude and intellectual focus alike, the city is a perfect fit for the idealistic, liberally minded ENFP. This type enjoys exploring numerous avenues of self-expression and personal growth, which San Francisco provides ample opportunity for. This buzzing, vibrant city mirrors the attitude of the effervescent ENFP in almost every way possible.”

After reading about ENFPs in San Francisco I felt very happy to get this as my answer. Yes, it was found on the mainland USA and not Hawaii, somewhere in Europe, or a place I had yet to be in perhaps Asia.  It was quite fitting with my personality.  Not to mention I do love San Francisco and had lived not to far away in Monterey for a couple of years with our first born as a baby when my husband was in the military. If I was to move back to the USA it would have to be the west coast all the way.

How about you?  Have you taken the Myers Briggs personality type test yet?  What are you and where should you live?

You can take the Myers Briggs personality type test here.

You can find out where you should live here.

Then join the link up below and see what other travel and expat bloggers have posted about today!



Cotswolds, England

Hello everyone and welcome to Travel Tuesday! My name is Amanda and I blog over at Rhyme & Ribbons. You can also find me on Instagram. In the fall, I was lucky enough to travel a bit through the Cotswolds, and I’d like to present a small picture of the area to you today!

The Cotswolds are a famously beautiful part of England, and the village of Bourton on the Water is no exception. (It’s even an official “Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty”.) I happened to arrive in the town just as they were starting their Remembrance Day ceremony.

The area is also famous for it’s predominantly stone homes. These beautiful villages were built in the time when English wool was king and they were racking in the big bucks. Bourton on the Water has about 4,000 inhabitants and is therefore considered a “larger” village for the area. It has a really picturesque High Street with the River Windrush running alongside it. Maybe I wouldn’t have loved living there as a teenager, but I’d certainly love to live there now!

Also if you are obsessed with “Buffy” or “Angel” like I am, you might recognise the area from an episode of “Angel” called “A Hole in the World” where Spike and Angel are looking for, predictably, an ancient demon in order to save Fred.
Bourton on the Water clockcotswolds in the fallchurch tower remembrancechurch guardmemorialleafy carstone and waterducksRiver

Have you traveled through the Cotswolds before?



Columbia Road Flower Market in London

Hello everyone and welcome to Travel Tuesday! My name is Amanda and I blog over at Rhyme & Ribbons. I’m originally from America, but I live in London now. Spring is in the air and I  thought I’d introduce you to one of the blogging epicentres in London: Columbia Road Flower Market.  It’s a combination of all things twee: puppies, vintage clothing and furniture, artisan pastries, babies, bicycles and most importantly lots and lots of flowers. I love every minute of it.

Columbia Road Flower Market
london england markets
The first of many photos of flowers. If you don’t like flowers, click away now.
london england markets

Despite the early hour, it was still packed.

 

In east London there exists the market of my dreams: Columbia Road Flower Market. A market devoted solely to bunches of flowers, flowers for planting, plants, bushes, shoots and sprouts. And it’s only open Sundays from 8am-3pm. Breaking with our usual Sunday sleeping-in tradition, Sam and I set alarms to head out early doors on Sunday in an effort to beat the the worst of the throngs in the market. Despite only having been open for a little while, the road was already packed. (But that was nothing compared to the crowds that came later in the morning.) 
Columbia Market was originally opened in 1869 as a food market and then started making the transition to focus solely on gardening in the 1960s. In the 1980s the road began garner international press and is world famous today.  While some criticise the prices, I’d have to say that personally, I found them really reasonable. To clarify, I am not a flower expert at all. All my bouquets come from Sainsburys or Tesco. Marks & Spencer if I’m feeling really middle class. And the flowers I bought at Columbia Road were significantly cheaper than any bouquet I’ve bought at the aforementioned places. (I spent a total of £10 and took home a bouquet of hyacinth, a bouquet of ranunculus, and a bouquet of anemones.) 
The surrounding shops are open and are selling equally beautiful wares; the smallest of alleys is turned into a temporary bakery- there’s hardly a square inch of space that isn’t being utilised to sell something.  We decided to really make a morning of it and visit the famous Lily Vanilli bakery since it was right there as well and I’ve been keen to go for ages.

bakeries london
As you can see, the bakery is absolutely tiny but adorable.
bakeries london
bakery london brownies and coffee
Sunday funday, right? So brownies and coffee for breakfast is okay?
Despite the fact that the brownies were a bit rich to have at breakfast, they were delicious. Dense, moist and fudgey with chunks of chocolate. The flat white coffee was really great as well.
The market is very crowded but the street itself is quite small. So before buying anything, I fought the crowds twice walking up and down sizing up what exactly I wanted to buy.
london england markets
This was the stall where I ended up purchasing my flowers.
me at the market london
Trench: Kenneth Cole (old, similar seen here.) Dress: Modcloth. Boots: similar (on sale). Bag: Longchamp Le Pliage.
london england markets
I was fascinated by these black roses but they weren’t the kind of flower I’d like to have around the house.
london england markets
london england market pastries
A selection of delicious pastries that are for sale tucked into a small alcove in a nearby building.
london england markets
roses markets london
I loved the rose stalls with their big swaths of colour.
london england markets
london england flower markets bouquet
The flowers I ended up going home with.
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I like Lyn’s post on Chile