Hi, lovely hunnies and fellow wanderers!
October has arrived and for those of us in the northern hemisphere, it’s getting cooler and cooler. I’m personally quite happy about that because in my corner of the world, the summer gets intense!
The month of September ended up being very relaxing for me though and it looks like October will be more of the same, which I’m very happy about.
I also have very exciting things happening this month which I’m looking forward to sharing with you soon… but not today.
Today, I’m sharing with you my next instalment of Stories For A Smile!
This collection of stories have genuinely excited, relieved and moved me and has reminded me that not only is there positive progress being made in this world, but that there is still a lot of beauty and goodness here, even though it’s easy to believe that there isn’t any left.
Hopefully, we’ll all remember that when we start to feel like the world is on a never-ending journey south.
And if not, that’s why I created the Stories For A Smile series! 😉
So, without further adieu, let’s begin with the Stories For A Smile, October 2016 edition.
If you’re anything like me, you often daydream of far away places where you can either embark on an exciting adventure, immerse yourself in an unfamiliar culture, or escape from the daily grind for a quick getaway with friends, a partner or even by yourself.
And if you’re also like me, you’ll know that it’s not always possible to take off on a multi-month trek across SE Asia, if you’re working 9-5 or saving up your dosh for something big like university. …*cough cough*.
But even if ‘real life’ requires you to stay close to home or hold on to your savings, it’s still possible to get your travel fix by going on a quick getaway.
For me, that opportunity came when my family decided to go on a short vacation to Eilat.
A small city at the most southern point of Israel, Eilat is a popular destination among locals and tourists alike and has been a family favourite of ours for many years.
Yes… I’ve used the T word.
No… not that T word. The one that makes every travel blogger & enthusiast swoon and purchase the next plane ticket to anywhere.
But that serious and scary T word.
The majority of us have had amazing, enriching, uplifting, life-affirming and confidence-building travel experiences. Most of my experiences have definitely been like that. I felt extremely safe in places that others were convinced were dangerous and I’ve made lifelong friends when others feared I’d be alone.
I wandered the streets of Paris and engaged with locals in their native tongue. I did a safari in Maasai Mara National Park, Kenya and I was lucky enough to see the Big 5. I travelled the Great Ocean Road with new friends from around the world and had a blast. And there are many more wonderful experiences that I’ve had while traveling.
I genuinely believe that travel has the power to educate our minds, expand our hearts, connect us to others and make us better people. And in turn, a better global society. I wouldn’t trade any of my travel experiences for the world and I’m grateful for each one.
However, not all of my experiences have been positive…
When we book a holiday anywhere, the main aspect of our trip that we research is where we’ll be staying.
Sure, we want to be certain that our flights are easy and that our days are jam-packed with fun activities… but what can really make or break a trip is the accommodation.
If your beds are too hard, your shower only offers cold water, your AC\heater is broken or you simply just don’t feel safe, then it will be a lot more challenging to enjoy your trip.
I’m not at all advocating against roughing it up. There are many trips where ‘roughing it up’ actually enhances your experience as well as being more practical and sometimes necessary. For instance, having bucket showers while volunteering in the slums of Nairobi, Kenya.
But when you’re jetting off for some much-needed R&R, chances are that you want your stay to be as comfortable as possible.
It’s your home away from home so it should be as comfortable as you’d like it to be 🙂
Hello lovely hunnies and fellow wanderers! 🙂
How has your summer been? Did you go anywhere for vacation and have some fun? Hopefully you’re soaking up every moment of sun that you can before winter officially arrives in a couple of months.
I personally was very fortunate to enjoy a relaxing getaway over the summer, but I have also been very busy over the past couple of months and it has been quite overwhelming.
Funnily enough, as September rolls around, I’m only now beginning to put an emphasis on resting and taking things easy. Oops! …Oh well.
I’m very excited to share with you this round of Stories For A Smile.
Life has been very busy as of late.
I’ve been balancing 2 jobs (one of which I’ve recently quit), this blog, a music project, therapy for my mental health issues, researching universities (because at the age of 22, I’m just a tad behind on that) and preparing for my fourth drivers test which I ended up passing. Finally! 🙂
I have been doing a lot of positive and important things but I was also beginning to feel very overwhelmed.
I was doing too much and I needed a break.
Luckily, because it’s the summer holidays, many of my family members are off from work and school. So when we decided to have a last minute relaxing getaway in Eilat, I was beyond thrilled!
I absolutely love travel.
Okay, I’m pointing out the obvious here. I mean, I run a travel blog for crying out loud, of course I love travel!
I love travel so much that even when I don’t have any actual plans on the horizon, I create fictitious ones in my mind and plan ideal itineraries for my imagination to enjoy.
Now, you might be asking, “Ella, if you’re fantasising so much about travel, why don’t you just turn one of your dream trips into a reality?”.
Well, my fellow wanderers, I do… when I’m able to.
See, it’s not always practical or helpful to go off gallivanting when you’re trying to achieve a different dream that requires you to stay close to home. And honestly, If I’m gone for too long, I start missing my friends, family and familiarity terribly. Not to mention that I personally do need a sense of stability and security in my regular life.
Even though I love it, I can’t travel all the time so I stay put and find other ways to satisfy my wanderlust.
And what’s my favourite way of satisfying my wanderlust, other than the magic of my own vivid imagination…