Travel tales. The souvenirs of the mind. Those are the ones we desire – we, who are drunk from our travel desires. Nothing is enough for us. We have to go again. There’s plenty of time to get that couch next year.
SUMMER 2014/CALIFORNIA DREAMIN’ (1 MONTH)
It was July when we fell in love with California. We were, just for the sake of existing. There was
no need to hurry. It felt good to enjoy the slow mornings, the sweet fruits, and the beautiful nature.
In the embrace of the waves, to forget everything else.
SUMMER 2013/SOUTHERN FRANCE (1 MONTH)
Somewhere there’s the cling of dishes and cheerful chatter. Shall we sit here? A jug of wine, bien sûr. Only after it do we continue the trip to Middle Ages. France – we always have each other.
SUMMER 2012/SOUTHERN SWITZERLAND AND NORTHERN ITALY (1 MONTH)
Sportscars, one after another, flash by. The serpentine road goes higher and higher to the armpit of the dark-green mountains. Should we take a bite of the lavender-lambs’ cloud?
SUMMER 2011/NORMANDY AND CENTRAL FRANCE
The monastery island of Mont Saint-Michel rises in front of us, mysterious. We climb up the stairs, wide enough for horses, to the top of the monastery. The mid-day heat stays outside the thick walls. We peek through the bow windows down the sharp hill towards the swirling rush of the low tide. Someone has drawn in the sand for tourists’ delight.
That moment, when you drag yourself into the hotel room, tired and hungry. You open the door and the kids run in to jump on the bed, screaming with delight. The window offers a view of the breath-taking Chambord castle in evening-light. Soon, the innkeeper lady brings a tray-full of delicacies she has gathered from the fridge and of course, a bottle of rosé. The feeling, when the wine sparkles in your mouth and relaxation returns to your being. The adventure continues tomorrow, but first we’ll jump on the bed.
SUMMER 2010/BIARRIZ, NORTHERN SPAIN AND RIOJA (1 MONTH)
Happened in León. Hems of skirts swish as the girls eagerly gallop forward and back in the park. As we leave, the old lady worries: do we have all the kids in tow? There were four of them, right? Our answer is not satisfactory, so next she asks if we are absolutely sure there weren’t three of them, instead? That’s how we felt at times.
SUMMER 2009/SOUTHERN FRANCE AND MONACO (1MONTH)
We now have two sweet daughters in our family. We make a deal with the kids: on every day of vacation, the girls get to eat ice-cream, swim, and get on a carousel whenever there is one in town. With this excuse the grown-ups get to do their own sight-seeing. A song plays in my head: Sur la pont d’Avignon.
CENTRAL FRANCE & LOIRE 2007 (1 MONTH)
In the words of Winnie The Pooh: “New footprints. Two has become three!” A train that puffs along the hallways of the wine cellar, the dusty secret stashes of the Loire castle, and the funny man, who gives out delicacies from the boulangerie. How grand it is to experience all of this together!
SOUTHERN SPAIN 2006 (1 MONTH)
The incredible beauty of the Alhambra, the cheeky monkeys of Gibraltar, the rugged surf waves of Cadiz, the drier than dry sherry in Jerez. Why settle for the sunny coast, when Spain is so much more?
CAMBODIA & THAILAND 2006 (1.5 MONTHS)
At five in the morning the sun rises behind the temples of Angkor Wat and colors the sky pink. The forgotten world taken over by the jungle. The sand like dust in the hot sun. No sightings of other tourists for hours.
MALAYSIA & BORNEO 2005 (1.5 MONTHS)
The sounds of the rainforest climb on the skin. The shirt is glued to the back. Waterfalls, lizards, snakes, birds, peculiar plants. The pant legs are stylishly tucked inside the tennis socks. The combat boots slice the muddy trail. At night you check to make sure that the rain forest hasn’t left souvenirs on the skin.
ITALY 2004 (1 MONTH)
That hot night in Venice in July will never be forgotten. We climb past the stairs of the most beautiful canal to the second floor. The iron key clinks in the apartment’s lock. The little window puffs steamy air from the pizzeria downstairs. There is only room for a slouching futon on the floor. To go to the bathroom you have to go to the pathetic little shack next to the door downstairs. Ten euros won’t get you a shower. We throw the rucksacks down. Sweat runs down the back and temples. We spend the night taking turns running to the bathroom to wet the sheets in cold water. The pizzeria has got it going on. Italian hits blast well into the night. Morning coffee has never tasted so good.
CUBA & DOMINICAN REPUBLIC 2003 (1.5 MONTHS)
Just us two and this magical moment. My love.
We have sprinted on city breaks whenever possible – to some of our favorites we’ve gone several times.
A quick walk down the memory lane took to at least the following locations: Rome, Paris, London, Stockholm, Tallinn, Riga, Vilnius, Brussels, Budapest, Warsaw, Berlin, Prague, Vienna, Madrid, Barcelona, Lisbon, Copenhagen, Zürich, Malta, Amsterdam, New York, Boston, Miami.
The most traditional kind of tourism has never really spoken to us, but we really enjoyed ourselves in both Algarve and Santorini. Tourist travel might get a chance some time, although we will keep skipping the pig fests…