Travel… it’s so damn good for your soul

Travel is my soul food I am sure of it…. it feeds me, makes me happy and healthy.

 

Any and all kinds of travel..

 

I am writing this from the BC Ferries, in which I travel A LOT… to and from the mainland of BC. For those of you who live nowhere near the west coast of Canada and do not know what I am talking about. I live in Victoria, a city on the southern tip of Vancouver Island. Victoria is actually our province’s capital city and is damn well beautiful.

Vancouver island is a giant piece of west coast beauty about 90 minutes by boat ( from the select locations where ferries depart from) from Vancouver, which is the mainland of BC, connecting to the rest of the country. The island is HUGE and in 33 years of life on it, I have never been to the tip…Come to think of it, I should do that soon.

 

Anyway, as I sit here looking outside the windows from my comfortable seat in the quiet Sea West lounge sipping my Airborne ( Yup I’ve become victim to that damn flu) I am in awe as per usual of where we live.

Travelling by water to the mainland from Victoria is so beautiful, and every single time, I feel the same sense of Awe.

 

I am on my way to Columbus Ohio, for the annual trip with Magnum ( my amazing sponsor family, who is actually the main sponsor this year..CONGRATULATIONS to Markus and Bert)

This trip is cold, it’s fast, it’s long days and short nights, but it’s travel and it’s with people I love and am inspired by, and I have the privilege of being invited…and it’s TRAVEL.

 

Arnold Classic, Ohio

I love plains trains boats cars, airports.. OHHHHH i love airports ( unless it’s the Ataturk, Istanbul International and I am with Serena and we are 30 hours deep into travel and at the WRONG airport for a flight that leaves in 2 hours…….) another story….. but other than that one airport, I love airports.

 

I was thinking the other day of all of the places I have travelled, and how lucky I am to have the experiences and I began to write them down. Serena and I have also done this with live music we’ve seen… and there has been A LOT. I think more live music than travel, I think. We both LOVE watching live music, almost regardless of who or what genre, just good live music does something for you.. and I was blessed to have a mother and father who both also loved live music, and so I began young.

 

Travel…

I want to share my list and some memories from each, if my little brain will allow the search records to go that far back 🙂 I have a terrible memory and am likely forgetting some great travels and adventures.

 

Dating back to the ripe age of 7…. in order of memory

 

California / DisneyLand : Mom and I trained from Seattle to California to visit her friend Ross and spend some time playing at DL.
I remember someone had their purse stolen on the train and so for the next evening I slept with my GIANT bag of candy tucked SO firmly under my arm you’d have to remove my arm from my body to get at it. I was terrified someone was after my candy.

This was also the trip I met Ginger Rogers at a theatre in Hollywood. She was adorable and I was oblivious.

 

Peurta Vallarta, Mexico: Quite a few years later, we ( I was travelling with My mom, her BFF and her son, my friend, we were 12) set a straw hut roof on fire with firecrackers.

Don’t ask, I don’t know. We ran and ran and ran, and then had mom(s) come and help us help the owners put the fire out.

OOPS

I also remember being stuck in the water playing in the waves during an EARTHQUAKE and being sucked out and smashed down and sucked out and smashed down for what felt like an eternity ( likely 2 minutes) I now have a slight fear of water.

 

Peurta Plata, Dominican Republic: Mom and I went here the year before she passed. This was a magical trip and we almost didn’t go on it.

We had had our tea leaves read a few months before we had gone and mom asked if we should go as she had a weird feeling about it. ( I’m not sure if it was financial reasons or actual intuition feelings, but she didn’t feel good about it) The reader said firmly this will be a VERY important trip for you and your daughter.

She was right, it was our last trip together.

We saw the best of that place, Paradise Island where we played with jelly fish ( and by played, I mean we threw them at each other, they were non stinging) we hiked through the most amazing jungle up an 11 story winding river and waterfall/slide to the highest peak at which point we jumped off a cliff and into the pool below.

I love her so much, and she also very much loved to travel.

 

After momma passed I went back to Mexico to get away.

Mayan Riviera, Mexico

I honestly don’t remember much about this trip other than a terrible sun burn on my calves on the first day while I slept like a baby in the sun.

 

Back to PP, Dominican Republic:

One of my BFF’s and I booked last minute and headed out for some fun in the sun.

Our layover took us to Montreal for 9 hours from 11pm-7 or 8 am. We caught a cab into downtown and it so happened to be the weekend that Montreal was hosting some indy car race through the city, you’d think it was Mardi Gras!! What an amazing time to see the city and kill a layover. The city never slept that night, to be fair I’m not sure it ever sleeps.

 

Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

I remember the hotel being INCREDIBLY beautiful and I took 1057 photos of the infinity pool over the ocean because I could NOT get enough of it.

I also had THE best lasagne of my life at some hidden Italian gem in town.

 

Kona, Hawaii ( I went 4 years in a row, stayed at the same place, same room… I love it here)

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My first experience with HAWAII and I fell deeply in love.

My first luau sunset, something everybody should experience.

I learned I have motion sickness in Kona, on a helicopter tour

I swam with dolphins in their natural habitat, I swam with manta rays, which also gave me motion sickness as it is done at night and the water is a bit rolly.

 Oregon / California Coast We took 10 days  and drove along the coast of Oregon, both camping and hotelling depending on the time of day we arrived at a destination. This drive is one of the MUST do’s if you are living or visiting the west coast.

We toured the home of William Hearst, the famous publisher. WOW What a home.

We camped among trees that must be 500 years old, we slept with the ocean waves crashing just outside our hotel windows…

We stopped in San Fransisco for a night and caught the last half of a Giants game. Ate the most amazing calamari I have ever and likely will ever have.
We ended in Malibu CA where we camped for 3 nights atop a cliff overlooking the sea. We watched dolphins play in the early morning hours and spent the day admiring the million dollar homes beneath us sitting waterfront. We ate amazing food and took a million photos ( I lost these on my previous computer:(( But I assure you they were amazing.) I will absolutely drive this caostline again, hopefully multiple times.

Italy

Venice, stole my heart within moments. I wanted to quit life as I knew it and travel back in time to become an artist or a writer and sit in the streets and sip espresso and eat pastry while falling in love with likely 10 people a day because that city is just LOVE and it’s the right thing to do.

Venice Italy

Monterosso, Cinque Terre.

The best pasta of my life, I was a bit wine tipsy, I remember it being gnocchi:)

Hiking along the coastal mountains that connect all 5 towns just a few months after the massive landslide was devastating as it tore through homes, and they were literally left cut in half on the path for you to walk by. Plates still on the table…Heartbreaking.

 

Florence, a one night stand with florence on the way to Rome. What a beautiful city. I remember walking around and accidentally coming across the MOST INCREDIBLE masterpiece of what I think was a church or cathedral but the size of it and the beauty of it was actually out of this world. In the dark of the night amongst hundreds of other beautiful buildings this big white sparkling masterpiece just stood there and shined as though angels were surrounding it.

 

Rome, I am glad to have gone, will likely never return. We had a ridiculous experience at the Vatican, although lucky to have gotten in on one of the busiest religious holidays of the country ( we were unaware of this upon our arrival lol which is why it was not my favourite stop of the trip)

 

Ischia Island, Ohhhhh islands in Italy are something else.

We were steps from the beach, where I would do morning sprints through the sand and lunges on the boardwalk before a beautiful breakfast…

 

Capri island, made me feel like I was royalty,

with royalty prices hahaha

Think sky scraper high white hills with beautiful white homes and villas and restaurants overlooking the turquoise water. We rented a small sailboat and toured around the island which was breathtaking.

From there we flew to Sicily. Stepping into Sicily is much like stepping back 100 years into traditional Italian living. We stayed here for 10 days with friends of mine and were treated like family the whole time, living life as they live. Markets, beaches, friend dinners ( which in Europe are MUCH later than what we are used to in North America)

 

I could recap Italy all day, and I left out a few bits because it could just go on and on…. If you have never been. GO.

 

Las Vegas ( 8 times… You don’t have enough time for Vegas recaps lol and I don’t have the memory…) Its always a blast, wouldn’t change a thing about any of my trips. I’ve been with Magnum 4 times for the Olympia, and 4 times for either Birthdays, stagettes, get aways etc

VEGAS

 

Cabo (again), My BFF and I booked a trip for a GREAT deal…. without looking at dates close enough to realize that we booked during american spring break!

At the ripe age of 31 we were outnumbered by a million 20 year olds partying to a level we have never seen before.

Cabo San Lucas

So relaxing, was NOT the key point of the trip, but entertaining most definitely was.

 

Cambodia So this trip was life altering. We ( 6 of us ) went on a fundraising campaign to help young girls sold into sex trafficking. We met girls as young as 1 who were victims of this terrible problem among the country. We filmed a short documentary style film to bring awareness to the problems. The country is beautiful the people are kind and lovely just ignorant. It’s not their fault, its lack of education and money. The scenery is forever in my mind. You should go.

Cambodia

 

Maui As a Kona lover I thought for sure I’d seen the best of Hawaii. In fact I hadn’t. And I imagine i HAVEN’T. Maui is magical and I don’t believe there are many places like it. Luau’s over looking the sunset on a beautiful beach. (The sunsets in maui are like no other) The flowers…Oh the flowers.

I am heading back in a few weeks… I may not return home.

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Turkey, Istanbul in all of it’s chaos is BEAUTIFUL and will engulf you if you let it.

The music, the history, the food, the people, the culture…

Istanbull, Turkey

Capadoccia, a sight you simply can not explain without seeing it yourself.

Take yourself back in time, say 10,000 years, living in caves shaped as giant arrow tips coming from the ground ( people still live in these) Hot air balloon rides at 3 am to watch the sun rise over these incredible peaks, the RAIN… wow that rain.

Turkey

Bodrum, like no other part of the country. Beach life at its best.

Bodrum

Israel Whirlwind trip in 2 days, Tel Aviv is simply beautiful. History placed on the most amazing ocean backdrop you’ve seen. Food to blow your mind, The home of the Shackshuka…..maybe not spelled right but holy dina! Seriously the best Feta cheese on the planet.

Dr. Shakshuka

The Dead Sea, crazy and wild and worth the drive.

The Dead Sea

Jerusalem, NO WORDS.

From a non religious visitor…. I was beyond words the whole time. I would live happily in the heart of this city. I am in awe, still. Best Hummus hands down

 

 

Greece Well Santorini is the paradise we all dream it to be. Any image you have seen of GREECE, You know blue water with white buildings for as far as you can see…. SANTORINI. Oia to be exact.

Santorini

Rent ATV’s eat all the food drink all the wine and take a camera. End of story.

Astarte Suites, Santorini

Mykonos, little, glorious, expensive, I’d go back in a heart beat. BEST DRAG SHOW I HAVE EVER SEEN.

Mykonos Drag Show

Athens, Honestly not my favourite, but happy to have gone. Everything in this country is so historic you can’t help but be in awe all of the time.

Athens, Zeus

Salylita, Mexico We went for a wedding. The trip was a bit hectic at first as PV was expected to have the BIGGEST Hurricane to have ever been recorded hit land the morning we flew in. Long chaotic story later we flew out the day after, NO hurricane ever happened and the trip was amazing. People were incredible, so many laughs, so much dancing and so happy to have gone.

Sayulita, Mexico

Next big adventure is coming up and it’s been on my dream list for almost 10 years… I am making it a reality this November.

I am going to INDIA.

I will begin my adventure November 2 when I land in Kolkata to volunteer at Mother Theresa Home of the Dying, from there I head north to Varanasi, where I plan on doing a lot of yoga ( it is the birth place after all) and watch from my hotel steps the excitement taking place along the Ganges river. My final stop is Goa for a 7 day yoga retreat where my home will be a hut on the beach:)

 

Life brings you all you wish for if you put it out there. It may take time and it may require work, but it will come if it serves you .

 

Travel safe, travel a lot and live with an open heart…