Archive | November, 2013

Guest blog- Bob Mauer – A great day spent in London, England

20 Nov

Introducing our travel guest blogger for November- Bob Mauer

Thank you to Bob for your fantastic blog, which inspires us all to travel to London.

With out further adieu introducing:
A great day spent in London” by Bob Mauer

I traveling fool who loves to learn about people and places. Learn more at http://www.thetravelingtripster.com. I also love to save money while I travel. Find cheap car rental, airline tickets, and hotels at Cheap Travel http://cheaptravelhunter.com/, Thrifty traveling allows you to see more of the world and really appreciate the people and culture.

London has always been a popular city for tourists to hoard into. And why not? This city has the best of attractions to offer for the curious soul. London as a city is home to myriad communities of people and has a rich historical splendor to charm you with. An epitome of elegance, sophistication and also sheer fun, London has been on my list of must visit cities for a long time. Hence I finally decided to drop into this city for a day of sheer delight. And needless to say, the trip was as memorable as I expected it to be.

A stroll through the British Museum and Natural History Museum
I decided to start my day with a lazy stroll through the famous British Museum. I am a fan of history and this museum has much to keep an enthusiast like me interested. I looked at the exhibits of man around the world – right from the prehistoric times to the present modern times. It was fascinating to see the entire transformation. I also viewed the Egypt collection which comprised mummies; the Pantheon sculptures et cetera and was fascinated by the sheer magnificence of it all. I followed up my visit to the British Museum with a walk through the famous Natural History Museum. The first thing that grabbed my attention here is the amazing dinosaur exhibition. I also saw the relic of a life sized blue whale, a spider which was 40 million year old and also other rare collection of animals from all over the world. The Central Hall was beautiful and overall, this visit was highly satiating for a history lover like me.

Some time at the St Paul’s Cathedral
St Paul’s Cathedral is an iconic piece of architecture in London. As I stepped into the building, I was instantly filled with a sense of tranquility. I had heard about the famous Whispering Gallery, famous for its acoustics. The burial here at St Paul’s Cathedral is a famous one as its crypt houses numerous iconic figures from the pages of history. I opted for a guided tour here, which lasted for about an hour and a half. Through this tour I had the best experience I could in this Cathedral.

A quick visit to Madame Tussauds
Who has not heard of Madame Tussauds! I have always been fascinated by the amazing wax figures of celebrities that this place has. Hence, this place was a must on my list. Once at Madame Tussauds I came face to face with the wax figures of some of the famous icons in the world – right from political, sports, film to music industry. I even posed for pictures with some of my favorites there. It was sheer fun looking at these life-sized figures here and posing with them. After a fun time at Madame Tussauds, I made way for my visit to the Tower of London.

At the Tower of London
This 900 year old historical structure is a must visit for anyone on their trip to London. This place is rich in history, royalty and stories. I went through the bedchamber of the medieval kings, feasted my eyes on the crown jewels and also looked up the White Tower. The Tower of London was once a royal palace and it also doubled up as a place for execution, a jewel house and even a zoo! No wonder it is one of the most famous buildings in this city. I had a gala time touring around this architectural marvel and taking in the myriad sights around me.

Ending with the Westminster Abbey
Westminster Abbey has been the centre for an array of royal events, which have occurred over the centuries. This is one of the most famous tourist attractions in London and it was the last on my list for the day. I knew it would be overwhelming for me if I decided to wander around on my own here. Hence I opted for a guided tour of the Abbey. I was impressed by the Poet’s Corner, the Coronation Chair, along with the numerous famous burial tombs here, including that of Henry III and Elizabeth I. The time spent amidst the impressive architecture here was completely worth it.

Take a trip to London and discover that this city has to offer!

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Planning the unplannable!

16 Nov

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As you all know I like to plan. Plan what I am doing this week, weekend, month, coming months. But sometime it seems no mater how hard you plan something happens and all plans goes out the window.

It could be dropping your phone in the toilet, planning a romantic getaway and hubby is away still, crashing your car, a family member passing away while abroad, driving a golf buggy into a car or throwing a surprise party for hubby and his flight is late and arrives half way through the party. What ever it is you need to be flexible, adaptable and calm.

Yes , to answer the question out there have I experienced all the above. Yes I have.

My life is a constant battle of being flexible. Is it because of the life I live? Is it because I a bit unko? Or is it both of the above.

The thing is to be adjustable. After the week I have had, I know I need to be. So with all that said, below are my top ways in dealing with the unplanned.

1- Breathe– as my mother always said, a deep breath goes a long way

2- Think practically- in unplanned situations it is important to think practically rather than emotionally

3- Make a plan– gather information, create a list and action accordingly.

4- Be Flexible– the unplanned event may not be ideal but be open to finding a solution

5- Wine & Girlfriends– if all else fails and it gets too much. Get your girlfriends or give them call and have a glass of wine to regroup.

Sometime the unplanned events are even better than the planned ones.

It is not about the destination but about the journey!

The Expat Journey

6 Nov

A travel experience comes with both high points and low points. That is no different to a expat journey.

Being a expat you get to experience amazing destinations but can struggle with the cultural differences and being away from loved ones.

This week I have reflected on my expat journey and it got me thinking what has been my top 5 expat moments to date.

So without further or due here is my top 5 in no particular order.

5- Attending USAFL Nationals

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4- Making life long friends. In particular one of my best mates Ja, who was a bridesmaid in our wedding.

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3- Celebrating our first wedding anniversary aboard Holland America cruise line to Alaska with my in laws.

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2- Celebrating my 30th Birthday in NYC

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1 – Engagement proposal from Hubby overlooking San Francisco Bay

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Here’s to many more expat moments.

As they say you are not on this earth for a long time but a good time!

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