I'm a 37-year old Seattle girl who was bitten by the travel bug on my first tour of Europe in 2004. This personal blog follows my attempts to visit as many countries as I can, as often as my budget will allow. Since starting this blog in 2007, I've also worked as a freelance copywriter for an online travel publication. This only served to add even more must-see locations to my already extended list.
Follow me as I try to balance "real life" with exploring the world, all while trying to conquer a wickedly ironic case of homesickness.


The Amazing Race

My interest in travel sometimes results in the following friendly suggestion, "You should audition for 'The Amazing Race'!"

Umm..."The Amazing Race" is not traveling.

"The Amazing Race" is a psychological experiment in how much travel-related stress a human being can endure before having a complete meltdown. It's a logistical travel nightmare involving jetlag, airline delays, language barriers, currency conversions, and 'Ugly American' stereotypes. The competitors are merely rats in CBS's sick little maze, willingly subjecting themselves to ulcer-inducing panic attacks, all cleverly set to cheesy rushed music that sounds like it was stolen from an Arnold Schwarzenegger film. I practically need Pepto Bismol just watching the show from my sofa.

I would rather have a root canal than compete on "The Amazing Race".


Read the fine print.

Well, don't I have a strange problem. I've mistakenly booked enough London accommodation for, count them, seven people.

You see, several months ago we booked our March trip for a really good deal. No, I mean, REALLY good. Only about 24 hours later, I'm feeling anti-hotel. I'm fickle; it happens. So after researching on British Airways and discovering you can cancel a hotel booking up to 40 days in advance for a full refund, I wire transfer a buttload of nonrefundable funds to an entirely different company for a 2 bedroom flat instead.

Time to cancel the hotel with BA.

Well, somewhere in the finely fine print that I completely missed (oh, and was misinformed by their customer service folk two separate times via phone...forgot that part), things are quite different when you're dealing with the REALLY good deal. In hindsight, this makes perfect sense; you don't get ridiculously good airfare without a Bible of restrictions attached.

So now, if I cancel the hotel, I also cancel the airfare, which any somewhat-seasoned traveler knows comes with your friendly cancellation fees attached. And even the brilliant idea of cancelling the entire thing and repurchasing the airfare without the hotel results in a higher total price...as previously mentioned, this was a REALLY good deal. Confucius say, "Might as well keep the superfluous room."

Anyone need a London hotel room for a week in March for the bargain price of only $700?


Seven Sisters

Ever since Kevin Costner and Morgan Freeman stumbled out of their little boat and kissed the beach under the the chalky cliffs of Southern England in "Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves", I've dreamt of visiting them. I was ecstatic to visit Dover for the first time in 2004 and again in 2005. (Everyone that's been to little Dover is chuckling at me right now...)

But something wasn't right; I couldn't quite check this off my Life List yet. My little girl dreams always involved sitting on the top of the highest spot of those white cliffs and dangling my toes over the side. Now, my somewhat grownup consciousness realizes that sitting on the edge of a chalk cliff is nothing more than foolish, but that doesn't mean I can't climb to the top and get within a few yards of the edge, right?

Well, I've found the spot to do just that: Seven Sisters Country Park in East Sussex:

But here's the tradeoff: no direct train lines, no direct bus lines, no private day trips...and the weather. Even though it's not too far from London in terms of miles, I've heard it could take 3-4 hours to finally stand up there and feel like the king (ahem, queen, excuse me) of the world. Now, the weather I could deal with; a stormy Channel might actually be rather cool to encounter. But an 8 hour round trip? Hmmm... Just how bad do I want this?
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