On August 31th, 2008, I boarded the first actual train ride of my Interrail journey. Switching trains in Bordeaux and Irún, it took over 12 hours to get from Paris to Madrid. I remember being slightly nervous at the first ticket control.
My last day in Paris came with gorgeous blue skies and amazing August weather. Perfect to visit some of the spots that were still on my list across Montmartre and the northern shores of the Seine. But for better or worse, that day came with a bit of a damper.
Sometimes it's hard to be present. We think about the past and dream about the future. We get lost in previous hurt and misunderstanding and get carried away by worries and fears about what might happen. You can pull yourself back to the here and now and realize all the blessings that you have been... Continue Reading →
The Château de Versailles may be considered a masterpiece of baroque architecture and was the blueprint for Central European palaces for decades to come. Every time I heard about the palace or its creator, I dreamed of seeing it for myself.
I was feeling lightheaded and weak even though physically I should have been fine. Regardless, once I had secured myself a bunk bed in the youth hostel and freshened up a little bit, I felt way to exhilarated to stay put.
And suddenly, I got cold feet. Planning the trip had been the easy part. But when the plan was finally about to become reality, I was afraid of my own courage.
My struggle during the planning phase was how to figure out what to take and what to leave behind. After all, I would have to carry all of my belongings for a good portion of the trip. And every unnecessary kilo hurts eventually.
I did some additional research to figure out what would be a reasonable budget. I figured that some countries (e.g. Italy) would require a little bit more daily allowance while other's would be cheaper (e.g. Turkey).