It’s been a while since I’ve been able to blog! We recently returned from a trip quite literally around the world! We visited family in the UK and toured around Nepal and India.
Every time we pack up for a long international trip, I look at my (CARRY ON) bag and sing in my head, “travelin’ light, it’s the only way to fly.” Yes, it still amazes me that I pack for 3 weeks in a tiny bag. If you look at my pictures closely, you’ll see a lot of outfit re-wears AND I always leave room for a few purchases overseas too ;).
This post is going to be all over the place, but it’s more a travel advocacy post. I plan on going into more detail about the goodies we got in India in forthcoming posts.
We started out our trip in Europe (Belfast, Northern Ireland then Bath, England) then headed to Asia (Nepal and India)–wow–what a contrast! Visiting family in Belfast and Bath was amazing and relaxing. Bath is one of the most beautiful cities in England, with its’ rich history dating back to the Romans.
Here are a few more pictures of Bath:
Europe was amazing and I’ve been blessed to visit a few times, however, I’ve never traveled to a place like Nepal or India before. From the culture, food, driving (which is absolute mayhem); I’ve never experienced anything even remotely close to visiting those countries. Writing this post, I have a hard time putting our experiences into words. The hair-raising car rides (whizzing and swerving around camels, cows, elephants, and families of 5 on a scooter), observing Hinduism, the heat, the smells of food cooking by the street vendors, the hawkers; India literally assaults your senses! While this vacation was far from relaxing, we saw some REALLY amazing things!
We saw the Himalayas.
Yup, that’s Everest with the cloud over the peak!
We rode an elephant.
Not sure what we’re pointing at but it’s a funny picture and one of the only shots the guide captured the ENTIRE elephant.
I fed monkeys at a random roadside fruit stand! The monkey taking the watermelon from me is nursing her baby!
We visited the Taj Mahal.
We got to see Hindu funerals at Varanasi, the holiest city in India.
We saw how carpets are made (I plan on doing a full post on this interesting process).
Here are a few more interesting shots:
The colors, sounds, smells and sights experienced all at the same time are what make these countries unique. Yes, I was hot, I got sick, I was pushed out of my comfort zone, and I missed a Western toilet. But it was a trip of a lifetime and I wouldn’t trade it for the world. When reflecting on our trip, I try to grasp the reason why I love to travel so much and I think it’s the thrill of a completely new experience. As we age, our perception of time changes. When we’re young we experience all of these new things and waiting for an anticipated event seems to take FOREVER (remember waiting for Christmas to come…I was ready the day after Halloween). As we age, our life seems to speed up and we fall into habits, routines, and have familiarity with the daily rhythm of life. Therefore, we rarely have completely new experiences that grow and shape our mind as when we were young.
I love traveling so much because it pushes me out of my comfort zone of the “know” into the “unknown.” When I travel to a place I’ve never been before, I almost feel like a child again, experiencing things for the first time. I get to see new things and have new experiences that I would never get if I didn’t go. My mind thrives on getting out of the ordinary and experiencing the extraordinary.
Even when I come back home to Southern Illinois, my life is forever changed. I see my whole world with a different perspective now (and this happens every time we go somewhere new). I learn so much about myself, other people, and it shapes my world views in such a way that I could never grasp from a textbook or a film.
So if you don’t travel much or you’re thinking about traveling some place very different, JUST DO IT! Travel is a very educational, eye-opening, and life changing experience!
Linking up to Savvy Southern Style!