Friday, June 17, 2011

All is Ready......

I am leaving in about five days...yes, my plans came to fruition and I am getting my trip ready. Now, that is a challenge indeed. When I lived in Curaçao, traveling was a given. Everyone I knew did took at least one trip a year. Those were the days.

You gave instructions to someone at a travel agency. The best way to get to where you where going was found, tickets booked. No sitting for hours trying to do this on your computer. There was no such thing as booking online......How civilized! Then you picked up your tickets, went home and started to get your things ready. Packing would be the harder thing you would do! Wonderful!

Instructions were given to the housekeeper....yes....back to that. It is a way of life in many countries to this day, you know. The house would be taken care of, if you had pets, they were taken care of...and if you were traveling alone, you didn't have to worry. Everything just went on as if you were there. Loved it! And when you got home, you slipped into your routine as if you had never left. Who wouldn't like that?

Nowadays, I have to plan everything, go to the supermarket, leave everything tidy. It's exhausting. When I finally get on the plane, I definitely need that vacation. It really makes you think: do I want to travel alone?...maybe not. We'll see how it goes this time. One thing is for sure, once I arrive in London, I am planning to enjoy every moment, same in Holland. This will be a trip to remember.

Friday, June 10, 2011

On Chasing Ghosts or Becoming one

Chasing Ghosts: It is not my phrase, read it today on a blog I have been following for years: Nomadic Matt. A young man from Boston who has traveled around the world documenting his adventures. He said he has made friends everywhere, shared experiences with so many during the years he has traveled the world...but doesn't want to go back to those places. Or relive these experiences. Going back, he says would be like chasing ghosts. I understand this; you cannot go back, no matter how hard you try.

When you moved around, leave your own country and choose to be a citizen of the world, you keep the friends that are truly friends. The ones that you can share your secrets with, the ones you have fun with, the ones you can cry with. They are always there and you miss them. When you meet them, you pick up the thread of your lives with easy. You remember the others that are glad to see you when you visit and whose company you can enjoy when you see them, but do not miss....not really.

Then it is the matter you know so well: out of sight, out of mind. You become the one friend people miss and look up, if you are lucky. Or the one people remember at times, the one they are glad to see only occasionally. You have no control on this, it is just what it is. The only thing that is certain is that you become a ghost. How much truth there is in this.....

So if you are chasing ghosts or just remembering good times, it is all part of this life you have chosen. Enjoy everything when it happens, then keep the memories, share them, treasure them. They enrich your life like nothing else.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Plans, Plans....never easy

All is finally decided, I think. Will be spending about 14 days in London and then on to Holland to spend another week with Thelma. It was not easy deciding on dates, times and schedules. Everyone has plans and plans are not always easy to alter. Why? I have no clue, but it's that way. I had wanted to travel in was not possible since I went to Panama in April. Camille has plans for the rest of the Summer, Thelma as well. A trip to Panama is an absolute possibility later on in the year. Anything can happen with my mother, who knows what else. There is just a window...Book that flight and think later...I have told myself. Europe, here I come! Will change plans later.....

Traveling alone is never easy for me...I am afraid of flying. No amount of traveling, reasoning, talking or advise have made any difference. As soon as I buy that ticket, I am in a panic....really! Never mind deciding what to pack, actual packing process, things I would take for Camille, medications, who knows. I am not even going there, but I m going.

Plans have been made, plans can be altered later. Now on to plan what I would do there. That should be inspiration enough: places to visit, friends to see. London is taken care of. So much I enjoy in this city, but there is the English countryside. Train rides and peaceful weekends of walks and pubs in quaint villages. I am looking forward to a different trip this time.

It's been years since I was in Holland last. Going on Euro Star, the ride from London, the Chunnel, through France and Belgium into Holland, it's so beautiful. I do love Amsterdam: cosmopolitan and busy, canals and good food. Shopping! Gezellig....Friends I haven't seen in ages, more walks and long conversations, catching up. Plans, yes, plans are the thing and making them is half the fun!