ON WRITING

“It’s very easy to quit during the first ten years of writing. Nobody cares whether you write or not, and it’s very hard to write when nobody cares one way or the other. You can’t get fired if you don’t write, and most of the time you don’t get rewarded if you do. But don’t quit.” Andre Dubus

Thursday, 21 November 2013

Write...Edit...Publish 'SHARING'. LOVE AND TRAVEL.

Hi fellow travellers in this theatre called life. For WEP's SHARING I'm comparing love and travel. I fly north to experience another Northern Hemisphere holiday season in just a few days. Naturally, travel is where my mind is. 

This trip...Amsterdam, Paris, Prague, Spain, Portugal and Morocco - 5 exciting weeks! 

Here's what I've learned so far re travel and love...

PHASE ONE: 
ANTICIPATION

When it comes to travel, thinking about it, planning it, is half the fun.

ANTICIPATION is a crucial phase of any journey. It's the promise that life will be more exciting than your everyday routine. Watching a sunset over the Sahara Desert, choosing which outdoor cafe to indulge your love of freshly-caught mussels in garlic cream sauce in the French Quarter in Paris, seeing the fairytale city of Prague for the first time, is probably going to be more fun than getting out of bed, running in the park, walking to work, working...isn't it just? 

We want the same thing from travel that we want from love - a life-changing encounter with destiny. Plus fantastic scenery and food.

'Sail away from the safe harbour. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.'                 (Mark Twain (1835-1910


The streets of Marrakesh
just made for exploring.

PHASE TWO:
PACKING

Getting there won't be half the fun if you are lugging too much luggage! If it won't fit into your carry-on luggage, leave it at home.

LIVING OUT OF A SUITCASE is not fun, but it's even less fun when it's the old cram, sit, zip scenario. 
Here are some of my tips for light travel:

  • plan to dress as if you're heading out to the store on Saturday morning. That's the kind of comfort you need when travelling. 
  • plan to wear every article of clothing multiple times. There's no room in your luggage for superfluous clothes. (They do have laundries overseas.) 
  • discover how little you really need in order to have the time of your life. Travel is not a fashion show - the people you meet will usually only see you in your outfit once! Let them screw up their nose at your fashion sense in that's all they've got to do!

A Lady's List

A small flask of brandy
Smelling salts
Light literature
Cushions covered in chintz or satin for putting under the feet
Suede gloves in Summer
Woolen muffatees in Winter
Fine yellowish brown paper to line the drawers of inns: There is something not particularly tempting in the idea of placing one's possessions in a place where one does not know what preceded them.         

Lillias Campbell Davidson - 'Hints to Lady Travellers at Home and Abroad'. (1889)

I can delete everything on that list except 'light literature' in the form of my Kindle, lol!

PHASE THREE:
ARRIVAL!

ARRIVING in a new place is a lot like love at first sight. The way a traveller feels on the first day of a journey, the first day in a new country, a new city. You feel giddy, gullible, stupid. 

Travel author Vivian Swift recounts arriving in Paris in 2005 - "There is no smoking allowed in the airport terminal," she said in perfect French to the woman who'd lit up a Marlboro. 
The woman looked at her sharply - "Zeez deestarib you?" In other words who could object to a little cigarette smoke, for God's sake? She drops the butt to the floor and crushes it with the leather toe of her tiny Roger Vivier ballerina flat. 
I could kiss her, Vivian recounts, for now I know that I have really and truly arrived in Paris!

Oh yes! Bring it on!

Another view from the Eiffel Tower

Sorry, it gives me vertigo too!

Love and travel both begin with a secret wish for a life with more adventure, more passion. But things can go wrong, as they do. Be prepared. But there's nothing bad about getting lost, you just discover more! Getting lost in Venice is a highlight of my life!

MOST ROMANTIC TRAVEL QUOTE EVER:

Much have I travell'd in realms of gold, and many goodly states and kingdoms seen, round many western islands have I been...felt I like some watcher of the skies when a new planet swims into his ken: or like stout Cortez when with eagle eyes he star'd at the Pacific - and all his men look'd at each other with wild surmise - silent, upon a peak in Darien.                      

John Keats (1795-1821)

LEAST ROMANTIC TRAVEL QUOTE EVER:

I came. I saw, I conquered.                    Julius Caesar (100BCE-44BCE)

With many thanks to:
Vivian Swift's Le Road Trip - A Traveler's Journal of Love and France.




And here is a photo taken in Broome, Western Australia, if any of you should aspire to visit our shores Down Under. Rather amazing, right?

What are your philosophies on travel? Share...
Click on the links in my right-hand sidebar for entries after the 22nd. 








45 comments:

  1. Oh my gosh!!! I sooo want to travel again. I'm not one for planning or even packing. I'm good with going light. You can always buy what you need. I just want to go!!! :)

    Have a truly awesome trip! I want to see photos!!!!!

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    1. Ha ha. There'll be a few photos posted from wherever I am no doubt. Going to be great. I do like the planning! D

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  2. Philosophy - pack only what you need, and go with as few plans as possible - that way the journey will take you where you need to go.

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  3. That last photo is amazing.
    Since I was just traveling, I can relate. (By car, so we got to overpack. And I took my guitar.) And sometimes it's not so much a life changing event we want as a find our life again event.

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  4. Hi Denise - what a great trip .. you will have fun - it's coolish now!! Wear and chuck when filthy, buy the odd new treat ... but I'd love to visit your camel sunset drenched beachside! I'll wait for you to return to your shores and save my pennies ... have so much fun - and post a few times please ... cheers Hilary

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    1. I always buy a big suitcase just before i leave to stuff it full of all the goodies I've managed to snaffle on my trip.

      Wouldn't it be lovely if you got down here one day! D

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  5. Travelling broadens our horizons and increases our tolerance for our differences. It makes us think and therefore better understand.

    I envy you your fantastic trip. Please do post pix, we like those!

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    1. I like your travel philosophy D. G. and I certainly agree!

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  6. Wow. Breathtaking. Australia, you are too amazing.

    I love this comparison--travel to love. Genius. Sheer genius.

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  7. The photo from Broome, Western Australia is STUNNING! Thank you so much for sharing it!

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  8. The Broome photo is beyond gorgeous! Happy travels!

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  9. Lovely pix, lovely philosophy. My days of foreign travel are kind of behind me now. I live vicariously through people like you.

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    1. I'm glad you like the pix and philosophy...but philosophies can be overturned on your travels...

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  10. Have a fabulous trip Denise. Enjoy the adventure and tell all when you return. Morocco? Seriously? Think I might be just the tiniest bit jealous!

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    1. This will be my second trip to Morocco. One of the best places ever to visit and shop! So culturally rich. Like being in the Bible.D

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    2. Sounds fabulous. Postcard please!

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    3. Sounds fabulous. Postcard please!

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  11. Two comfortable jeans, 4 t-shirts, lots of socks and Dr Scholls shoes is my traveling clothes, lol. Well, and pj's :)

    That alley in Marrakah looks dangerous. Lovely, but totally suspicious. There are camels in Oz? Cool.

    Have a great trip Denise. Careful in those shoes . . .

    ..........dhole

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    1. You're a girl after my own heart Donna, except for the Dr Scholls! I wear massage thongs/flip flops back at the hotel after the kilometres of walking all day!

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  12. What a fabulous post, Denise. I so enjoyed this! All those excerpts too. Just precious! I think I'll have to buy Vivan Swift's book immediately! How long will you be in Amsterdam for? I have no idea if there is any chance of meeting you to say hello (I work in Rotterdam and spend weekends in the south), but it would be a lovely idea! Let me know?

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    1. Hi Val. Am in Amsterdam for 3 days - 4th - 7th Dec. Would be amazing to meet up if we could arrange it!

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  13. Awesome post - as per usual! That photo from Broome is incredible. Wow. And I have gone there, but only as a kid. I'd only want to go when it's cold. haha. in other words, never? Nahhh, I know there are some times of year I could tolerate the weather up there.

    I think for me, the most awesome part of travelling is that I'm not at work. But yeah, seeing breathtaking sights I've never seen before is definitely a great part of the reason to travel!

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    1. Yep. Enjoying the 'fruits of your labour' is always a bonus! That's why I work - so I can travel!

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  14. I wish I could pack lighter or even pack tidier and neater than I do. Great quotes and pictures and I agree with everybody else the Broome sunset picture fantastic.

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    1. I take less every time Sally! Nothing nice about trundling big bags over cobblestones or up metro stairs when you missed the lift!

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  15. Loved this! I wish I could do a better job of stage one - anticipation. Even when everything is meticulously planned ahead of time and goes off without a hitch, I'm a wreck until the journey is actually underway!

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    1. I love it when the plane takes off and no one can ask me to do anything, call me etc. Ah, bliss!

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  16. I always over pack! Great list! I just hope that someday I can put it to good use and see Paris - that's a real dream! And yes I'd love to see your part of the world but first Paris! LOL Beautiful photo's, even the one where vertigo is captured!

    Have a truly wonderful time!

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    1. I'd love to meet you in Paris one day Yolanda!

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  17. That was a lovely post. Oh, I hate packing. I have an overwhelming tendency to pack for every eventuality as if I am headed across the country on the Oregon Trail and I better be sure I don't run out of anything when I reach my destination. Have a wonderful trip and be sure to tell us all about it.

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    1. Packing is what this coming week is all about. Thankfully, Geo lets me have half his allocated weight too, lol!

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  18. Lovely post, and how envious as we now face our bitter winter weather.

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    1. No doubt I'll be experiencing some of that bitter winter weather, Carole Anne, and relishing it. We are suffering hailstorms at the moment along with extremely hot weather.

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  19. In both love and travel, the right company makes all the difference.

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    1. So right, Armchair. If you can survive travelling together, you can survive anything!

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  20. Hi Denise
    You made me laugh. I don't think Julius was romantic by any sense of the word. Hehe.

    I dream of travel. In my dreams I sail on fine seas and hop on trains. I climb on jets and swim with (no, no, sharks might rhythm but I don't swim with them.) Silly me.

    When I was a child we took road trips every summer and went all over the US. My mother fell in love with Colorado so we ended up here. If I ever have money I would love to come to Australia. If I ever have money and a lovely house I will invite you to come for a visit. Lots to see in Colorado.

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  21. What a great (and funny) article about traveling. Too true about the first arrival being like falling in love. Everything's so charming when you're visiting for a little while. I loved the Twain quote, and all your pics were AMAZING!! :-)

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  22. Paris is my all-time favourite city!
    I was fortunate enough to visit London and Paris and a few other cities, in the late '80's (back in the day of the French franc). I can remember the pound/rand exchange rate was 1£ = R4... that was a long, long time ago... now it's £1 = R16 which is four times what it was then!
    I always say that I'm way overdue for a return trip, but with the high exchange rate, I don't know...
    The Eiffel Tower is THE most amazing attraction!
    And I didn't know that there are camels in Oz? That photo is beautiful...
    Enjoy your holiday, Denise!

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  23. Oh Denise! This is lovely. I have always longed for travel. I've been to a few places, traveled up the East Coast of America, but I LONG for foreign travel. To see Paris and Morocco, to stand on the bridges in Prague! Have fun and take TONS of pictures!! Travel is a romance for me, an addiction.
    The very few times I've been doused in it, I've not wanted to return. My soul belongs in Europe, but I've always ALWAYS wanted to travel Down Under.

    Enjoy your holiday!
    Jen

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  24. What a lovely post, Denise! And great advice!
    I've always loved travelling and dreamt of adventures... Have a fabulous time in yours! :-)

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  25. Have a great time Denise, see you when you get back x

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  26. Hope you have a great trip. I loved this blog. I too, love to travel, especially to France, but would love to some day go to Australia. Really. I LOVED the photo at the end with the camels. That is a major WOW I would love to see in real life!!! Bon Voyage!

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