Tag Archives: travelling

August bank holiday

The Summer Bank Holiday (also known as the August bank holiday) is in a couple of weeks. We have left it too late to book anything, and I was looking the other night at possible places where we could go for a short break, but everything was fully booked or stupidly expensive.

So I think we’re going to do the easy option, which is doing a couple of day visits to places nearby.

What have I got in mind?

The isle of Wight.

It is near enough but would entail a lot of travelling. We would have to drive to Southampton (approx. 45 minutes) and take the ferry to the Isle of Wight (depending on the ferry and service, it could be an extra hour journey). Then, once in the Isle of Wight I would like to go and see the Needles. I have already been on the island a couple of times when I was living in Portsmouth, but I always visited the east coast only. Ideally we would stop in a little village to have lunch, see the Needles and a bit more of the west coast and head back home. It sounds like a nice little trip, but there’s lots of travelling involved.

 

Oxford.

I have visited Oxford once before, when I was 19; but I must admit that I do not remember much. I visited with a girl that I was on my same English course, but she was a bit of a moaner, and she spent the whole trip complaining about something or other, which spoiled my day a bit. So I would like to go back and actually see it properly this time. It will probably be a bit busy with tourists, but I have learnt to ignore them.

Oxford is only an hour’s drive from us, with the added bonus of park and ride, which makes visiting a small town so much more convenient, so you don’t have to worry about car parking.

 

Wells.

Wells is probably the one the furthest away and would probably need an overnight stay to actually make the most of it. It is two hours drive away (that, when compared to the trip to the Isle of Wight, is actually not that much worse).

I had never heard of Wells until I watched the TV series of Pillars of the Earth. In the last episode they show an aerial view of what the fictitious cathedral would have looked like in modern times and, after asking around, I discovered that it was actually Wells cathedral and not a computer generated one.

I’ve got a thing for cathedrals (and castles), they fascinate me. I can spend hours looking at their structure, figuring out how they were built, with all the intricate details and  features. So finally visiting Wells cathedral would be awesome.

Good thing that I really love this country and I am happy to go anywhere to visit!

Time alone

Jon has been at his new job for 3 full months now. Three months is not a lot, and still, it feels like it’s been so much longer!

We knew from the start that this new role would entail lots of travelling, and it hasn’t been too bad apart for a couple of full weeks abroad. At the beginning it’s weird, as we hadn’t spent so much time apart since back in 2008 when he was working at The Point in Dublin.

But after some time, I’ve got used to spending some time alone. At first I idealised the situation, promising myself that in those days I would cook food that I like but Jon doesn’t, I would do lots of crafting, I would read more, etc. But I am afraid that not much of that has actually happened.

On average, Jon spends one night or two away every week and what do I do to make the most of that time alone? Nothing.

I’ve been terribly busy at work in the last few weeks, working many long hours. When Jon is away I make the most of the fact that I don’t have to get back home to him so I start at 7am and I don’t get home until 6:30 or later (and only because little Tom needs feeding)

So by the time I get home I am so tired that I don’t fancy cooking, crafting or reading. I prepare a light bite and plompf in front of the TV for a while before it’s time to go to bed again.

To be perfectly honest, I am doing this for two reasons:

1) Because we actually have this very demanding job at work that needs the hours put into, and
2) Because I am earning some very valuable brownie points with my boss, and I’ve got a feeling that I am going to need those brownie points sooner than i think. But that’s another story for another day…

For now, it’s time to put another episode of Big Bang Theory and retire to bed. Tomorrow it’s going to be another long day.

The visit to Bogotá

It seems that I will be spending my birthday in Colombia. I will be there for a week for work at the end of February.

To be honest, I didn’t fancy going at all. We leave on a Sunday at silly o’clock, arrive in Colombia in the evening and start work on the Monday morning for the next 5 days non-stop. Then we get a few hours free of the next Saturday morning, get the flight back and arrive in London again on the Sunday in the afternoon. It’s going to be a killer…

The other negative is that the reason that I am going is because they want me to act as an interpreter. I have told them again and again that I am not comfortable doing that. Several reasons, the most important one being the fact that all the work-related vocabulary that I know I learnt in English, I do not know those words and phrases in Spanish and trying to get me to translate would be as useful as having a dictionary with you – I may get the immediate translation but it may not make much sense in the context.

In addition to all of this, our parent company has got very strict rules when it comes to travelling to certain countries. They have put Colombia under “amber category”, which means that they don’t think it’s a safe place to go to, so they have put all of these systems in place that seem a bit ridiculous to me. For example, all taxis have to be booked by the local office and we are not allowed to walk around on our own, least of all at certain times of the day.

But I’ve started to come around it. Now that the tickets are booked and I have no way of getting out of it, I am trying to see the positives.

To start, we are travelling business class and this is going to br my first time ever! (and probably the last time too, judging by the prices). The plane and the service looks awesome and I am kind of hoping that those 11 hours fly by quickly (forgive the pun). I also have a window seat in all four flights (London-Paris, Paris-Bogotá, Bogotá-Paris and Paris-London). And the on-board entertainment looks good (I’ve already checked the films, and they have “Melancholia“, which I’m looking forward to watching)

Whilst in Bogotá I know that we will be looked after by the local office, and they will probably take us to decent restaurants and all, and with it being my birthday while we are there, I am pretty sure that it will be fun.

And the third positive about the whole thing is that I will be getting two or three days off in lieu.. Not bad 🙂

I suppose I will write a bit more about the trip after it’s happened; hopefully I’ll get to take a few pictures!

Old thoughts

South East

Next month I will have been in the UK for three years. It doesn’t seem like a long time, but it has almost been a lifetime for me. Things that I would have never imagined have happened to me in this time, and who knows what other things are awaiting for me in the near future.

I haven’t been able to get my old myspace blogs in here yet, althought it’s something that will eventually be done. I’d like all my old thoughts to be put together in just one place. I never thought I’d keep a regular blog (or a diary, basically), I just think I’m too lazy and sometimes I just don’t know how to put into words all these thoughts in my head. So now that I have more than three years of old thoughts in writing, I want to keep them.

I’ve been having a quick look at the old posts in my myspace blog. This paragraph deserves some recognition:

“Dejo atrás muchas cosas y no echaré de menos nada. Me siento mal por este hecho, pero es así. My friends gave up on me long ago, and so did my family. Weather and food are stupid things to miss, so I will find myself with me, myself, and I to reach all my expectations. I just count on ME to fulfill my dreams”

I was writing about coming to live in England, all my fears, my worries, all my expectations. I was so damn worried. It was what I had ever wanted, but it still required a huge faith leap to get all my thoughts clear in my head. I was very sure of what I wanted. I just didn’t know how to get there. The “journey” in the end wasn’t that bad. Okay, fair enough, the first month I was in shambles, then the following months weren’t as good as I thought they’d be, and then, about 6 months after arriving my life gave a 360 degree change… But that’s material for another post.

What I’ll do in a week

Feeling Homesick 1, originally uploaded by marialachica (in Spain for a week!).

I’m off to Motril tomorrow for a week. Jon and I are taking his parents for a visit to my hometown. It’s promising to be a very interesting visit…

Things I’ll do:

I’ll see my family.

I’ll probably see some friends.

I’ll be staying in my flat for the first time.

I’ll eat fish.

I’ll swim in the sea.

I’ll “enjoy” the terrible heat of the midday sun.

I’ll go to the wine bar and have a very cold “Rueda” wine.

I’ll eat pipas.

I’ll go to the ice-cream parlour like 50 times in seven days.

I’ll get a tan.

I’ll relax.

I’ll get fatter.

I’ll bring lots of pipas back.