Back Down to Earth with New Dreams

Oy Gevalt.  I’ve been silent here on wordpress for some time.  I hope my absence has not left you too distraught!  (That’s your cue to act distraught)  It’s ok, I’m back now, and I mean to stay.  I know I’ve said that before, so we’ll just have to see how it goes.  I don’t want to be that boyfriend who says that he loves you and always promises to change, but never does.

When last you heard from me, I had applied to the World Nomads Travel Writing Scholarship.  My essay, Pasta, Wine, and Old Women, was well received from my followers and friends, but no dice with the judges for the scholarship.  It was as I’d expected.  This was a worldwide competition which last year drew over 1000 applicants.  The odds were not in my favor from the get go.  However, I couldn’t help feel a pang of sadness when I scanned the shortlisted essays deemed worthy to make the final cut.  That pang quickly turned into feelings of anger and jealousy that I quickly squashed.  I hate sore losers, and do not like to be one, but I have to point something out: nearly all of the essays were about exotic locals, most of them Southeast Asia.  Mine was about Italy.  It seems the odds were against me in my writing choice.  Of course I’ve never been to Asia, which is part of the reason why I wanted to win the scholarship in the first place.  It’s also a contest run by Australians, a group of people I adore. My, but they are a hardcore group of travelers!  Italy may have been a little too quaint for the panel.  Had I chosen to write about my experiences in Israel, maybe I would have stood more of a chance.

I googled “Australian traveler” and this is the first picture I found. These guys looking like hardcore pack mules dodging rickshaws in some remote Asian town. Yeah, I guess Italy wasn’t a good choice!

But I’m putting it behind me.  I was a little down yesterday, thinking about my cold, foggy San Francisco summer with no big trip and lots of retail slave hours ahead of me.  But I’m going to be positive.  I love this city, so I’m sure I’ll have fun even with the fog as a regular companion.  I have several short getaway trips to various parts of California in the works.  And to keep above the retail humdrum,  I need to make sure I am fulfilling my creative self.  I’ve been getting more active with my Etsy shop, where I sell vintage clothes and things that I make out of vintage clothes to awesome people all over the globe.  I’ve been starting to volunteer with Shotgun Players, a theater group in Berkeley, and just submitted an application to volunteer with the prestigious Berkeley Reperatory Theater Company.  I’m crocheting a hat.  And another thing I can do to keep creative is be more active with this blog!

So I’m going to share with you readers a little pipe dream I have in the works.  Here goes:

Five years ago now I went with my sister Mel and my best friends, Jill and Sara, on a huge backpacking trip to Europe for 7 weeks.  That trip is where the bulk of my traveling experience has come from, and one I keep referencing here in this blog.  While I have many parts of the globe still unconquered (like freaking Asia!) there is something about Europe that always calls to me.  Maybe it’s the sense of the familiar yet different.  Maybe it’s my upbringing and that my parents always like traveling to Europe and my mom would rent arty European films and the employees at Blockbuster would look and us strangely.  I’m not quite sure.

Jill, Sara, and Mel under a tree at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland on that fateful voyage
Me leaping across Abbey Road in London

I was 19 when I went on that trip.  It was the trip of a lifetime and helped shape the person I am today in many ways.  But I’m older, not much wiser now.  I was reflecting on that trip and wondering what it would be like to go back as the person who I am today and see it with my eyes now.  And voila!  It came to me.

Five years should be enough time to save for a few months in Europe.  In five years, I will be 29, and I will do a ten year reunion of me and the European continent.  Some places I’ll revisit and see what it’s like to be there as my 29 year old self.  I’m sure some places will have changed very little, some quite a bit.  There’s also several locations that we didn’t make it to, like farther into Eastern Europe and Spain, that I’m just itching to check out.  A few places from the original trip, like Nice, I’ll drop from the new itinerary.  Not that there’s anything wrong with Nice, it’s just small and I feel like I’ve done it.

A girl can dream right?

If in five years I do this and still have this blog, as I’m sure I will or maybe it will be on some cooler, niftier blogging site since that is the way of the internet, you will be the first to hear about all of my new adventures!  Maybe I’ll start planning and sharing bits of research on this blog.  I will also keep talking about my California summer road-tripping, and my SF adventures.  I actually have another post of restaurant review that I just never published; stay tuned!

What places have you been to that you are dying to go back?  Where have you always wanted to go but have never quite make it?  What should I absolutely include on my reunion trip?  Tell me, I wanna know!

Good Night and Happy Travels,


6 thoughts on “Back Down to Earth with New Dreams”

  1. Mo – this is a brilliant plan! Planning for a trip is often the funnest part. And of course you’ll be all saved up and ready to hit the road in five years (probably less!). I look forward to reading more!!! Missing you in LA, Misha

  2. I’m going to live vicariously through you since I have no idea when I’ll be able to go traveling again.

    There are many places I want to go back to, like London, Ireland (the whole country), Paris, and Santorini, but there are a lot more places I want to go for the first time, like Sicily, Turkey, Germany, other parts of France and Greece, and Egypt. So if you get to any of those places, it will be nice to see how you enjoyed them!

    1. What a great list! I’ve skimmed the surface of Germany, but I could really do to go back, and almost made it to Egypt but that fell through. I really want to do Turkey, Greece and Egypt though. Hey, that could be it’s own tour! Like an “ancient civilization” tour. Thanks for following!

  3. I am sure you know how I feel about your new plan:-) in response to your questions:

    -been but dying to go back: Burma, Laos, Jordan (but mostly to retake lost pictures), Paris, Italy, Cz. Rep, Poland.

    Haven’t made it but really want to: Lion/Elephant/Giraffe parts of Africa, South America, Hungary/Romania/Norway/Spain, India, China.

    Where you should go: mostly new places. Maybe pick one or two faves to revisit but I’d vote for an Eastern Europe focus, maybe including Croatia, Romania, Hungary, Turkey, Greece and/or Northern like Finland/Norway.

    1. Fantastic! Yes, I do want to include a lot more Eastern Europe. If it’s financially viable, I’d love to make it over to Russia and Ukraine as well and see my ancestors plot of dirt before they were kicked out. Jews, ya know!

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