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Jul 05 2012

Bit by the Travel Bug

Oia in Santorini

I’m pleased to announce that I’m able to cross one of the big-ticket items off my OMG I’m About to Turn 30 Last-Minute to-do List. I recently returned from my very first trip overseas, and all I can say is WOOHOO! Why didn’t I do this sooner?

The Parthenon in Athens

I was fortunate enough to explore Greece with a dear friend who was also getting her passport stamped for the first time. It was good timing for both of us; we’ve both gone through some life changes this year and were in need of a bit of an escape. But what we got was so much more than just that.

Our trip included a big fat Greek wedding in a small town, visits to two islands – one that never sleeps and one that offered the most breathtaking views I’ve ever seen – and some time in Athens to appreciate the historical sites in a big, graffiti-laden city.

It was the vacation of a lifetime and one we won’t soon forget. We experienced a lot of firsts along the way – clubs that never close, octopus for dinner, toilets you can’t throw the tissue into. And we learned a few things here and there – like European hotels have impossibly tiny showers, you couldn’t pay me enough to drive on the mad streets of Athens and a real Greek salad has no lettuce (and thus every Greek restaurant I ever loved in America is now ruined).

Mykonos

Now, upon our return to our dull American lives, my travel companion and I are aware that we are in trouble, because now that we’ve gotten a taste for travel, we’re hungry for it. Bit by the bug, we’ll be feeling the itch until we get on a plane again.

They say there’s no place like home, and it’s true, but something about leaving that home and experiencing something so different was refreshing in a way I can’t quite describe. The multiple languages and accents, the foreign scenery – it was all surprisingly comforting and uplifting, and I’m so grateful to have had the experience.

I don’t know, maybe it was the nasty old battle-axe who “greeted” us at JFK Airport that soured my return to the good ol’ U.S. of A, but I do know this: I’m starting to save for my next trip now.

(Oh, and P.S., I watched “The Matrix” on the long flight home, so I can cross one more thing of my to-do list! Go multitasking!)

Fira in Santorini

 

5 comments

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  1. Kat

    What an amazing experience! After reading this, it made me think of my trip to Italy. I was so taken in by the culture, food, people and scenery. Traveling to a foreign country really does change your life in some fascinating lil way. However, you are so right about the bathrooms being small. Did you come across any that just have a hole in the center of the floor with foot pads on the sides to position yourself? Well, I did and let me tell you…..it was an eye opener. I’m glad you and your friend were able to have such an awesome trip! Love the pictures too!

    1. Talk 30 To Me

      Yes, Kat! We had the hole-in-the-floor experience at a bus station shortly after we arrived and we thought we were doomed for the whole trip. Thank goodness that was the only one. 🙂

  2. Sarah

    I can’t tell you how often I browse travel sites dreaming of my next trip or plan when I’ll move to New Zealand and work there for a few years. If only it were easier…

  3. Christopher

    Traveling is contagious, simply put. Now that the bug has bitten you, you’ll always be chasing that bite … Like the Junky and his needle! Ok, maybe not quite like that, but you get the idea.

  4. Kaylene

    Yay! Sounds like you had a great time. I definitely suggest doing much more traveling before kids:) We did a two week trip to Belize and Guatemala… amazing! Look into the islands of Belize ( the Cayes). I think you would enjoy it. Thanks for sharing your adventure, I look forward to living vicariously through you in the future;-)

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