Itchy feet

This year, thanks to dealing with breast cancer, isn’t supposed to be a travelling year. I have set myself to plan for a holiday next year so as to celebrate being clear and free of the cancer (one can hope) and to celebrate the fact that I will turn 40 (I can hardly believe it). Strangely enough, it is not daunting me that I will hit that big milestone. As a single woman without kids I should be terrified as it will mark a big scary jump on my biological clock but somehow, because of aforementioned cancer, it has lost its scariness. I suppose being faced with a life threatening illness (even if it hadn’t reach the heavy stage) makes you appreciate all the potential birthdays you will get.

Any how, this was not meant to be the subject of this post. I am not here to talk about my boobies or my ticking clock but about my itchy feet!

I am not sure I will be able to wait until next year to go on a trip somewhere I haven’t been. First I have been invited to spend the weekend in a plush hotel in Barcelona early June. That’s one of the privileges of my job. It’s what called a FAM trip – don’t ask me what FAM means, I don’t actually know; what I do know is that it means a free weekend away flights and accommodation included, thank you very much! I have already been to Barcelona so I have done all the touristy things to do there.

NYC Skyline, courtesy of Google Images

NYC Skyline, courtesy of Google Images

Yesterday, one of my colleague was talking about trying to find a destination in Europe for a 5 days trip and I was giving her ideas of where to go and that made me long for a break away. I then went onto lastminute.com to see where I could go for 4/5 days myself (so I don’t take too many days off) and by myself (so I don’t have to rely on anyone else to be free) but without actually doing a group tour holiday and my eyes settled on New York. A city break would be ideal and I have never been to the Big Apple.

As you may have read before, I have a tendency to obsess a little when I start thinking about something like a holiday so of course, I went straight to Amazon and bought myself the Lonely Planet New York City guide so I can start looking at what I can do over 4 days and where would be best for me to stay without having to spend my time in the transport and be safe if I travel alone.

NYC Skyline, courtesy of Google Images

NYC Skyline, courtesy of Google Images

I am thinking I could go in Sept/Oct this year considering I will have been done with all the active treatments relating to my breast cancer (I have finished chemo end of March and I am about to have the operation on 21st May, so I should be finished with it before summer starts…well if summer ever starts here). It will be the opportunity for me to check out the city that is the background for many of my favourite tv shows, such as CSI:NY.

NYC, courtesy of Google Images

NYC, courtesy of Google Images

Considering the operation I am going to have and the fact that following removal of lymph nodes you have increased risks of infection, it might not be possible for me to so my African safari next year or even go anywhere which requires shots so I might have to go back to the drawing board for my grand holiday.

NYC Skyline, courtesy of Google Images

NYC Skyline, courtesy of Google Images

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My next holiday – Part II

So last time I was pondering where I would go travelling next, my sights were set on Costa Rica.

I got the guidebook and all and wham…the next day I was diagnosed with breast cancer and all thoughts of holiday went out the window. 2013 will be a travel-free zone. No exotic holiday for me until I have been cleared (it’s all going in the right direction luckily). So it leaves me to look to 2014 for that and what do you know? It will also be the year I turn 40. Yup I know, some people get all scared by this number but to tell you the truth, I am kind of looking forward to it.

Therefore I have decided that because of that, 2014 should be a year of celebrations for me…the whole turning 40 but also – and hopefully – being cancer free. And what better way to celebrate than going on a holiday of a lifetime? That’s right, not much and that’s also a fun project to work on whilst I am recovering from chemotherapy.

Up until a couple of weeks ago, I was still keen on Costa Rica and then a friend of mine posted pictures of the safari he went on whilst on business trip to Kenya and suddenly all thoughts of Costa Rica are gone! I want to go on a safari! I want to see African elephants in the wild and lions, zebras, cheetahs…and all sorts of other wildlife! So here I am, excited and obsessed at the same time, about this new project. I have a year at least to plan it and save for it as it is not a cheap holiday but I am sure well worth it.

There are few countries which can be selected for a safari. Kenya is the most obvious and from what I read the most travelled. Many recommend Tanzania instead and from the little I have read so far, I think it might be my preferred option but I am waiting for the guidebooks to arrive so I can drool over the pictures and start proper research. If I am going to spend this much money on a holiday, I want to make sure I get the optimised options.

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Costa Rica or not Costa Rica?

The more I think about it, the more I want to go but now I am not sure when would be the best time for me? Should I go in Feb or Nov next year? I have just received the Footprint Guidebook from Amazon and I think I will ponder on that, maybe check for when the weather is best but it’s the Caribbean so Feb or Nov should both be ok right?

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Finding my next holiday

Today I have had a fairly dull day at work. It’s Friday, it was sunny out there but cold and dead in the office and I had no back log work to clear…so I started to think of where I wanted to go on holiday next.

I am very tempted by Costa Rica…it seems to be the new destination of choice as I mentioned it to a friend of mine and she said she had been talking about this destination with her boyfriend.

My thing is that I want to go somewhere exotic where I can mix physical activities with a bit farniente and be part of a group even though I am travelling by myself. I know it would be probably cheaper for me to organise my own trip and pick and choose on site what to do but I can’t be ask to deal with the stress of picking out things to do. If I was travelling with a friend then it would be different but unfortunately – here is that word again – I don’t have any travel buddies. My last holiday as you will know if you have followed my ramblings, was in the US through a company called Trekamerica and I really, really enjoyed it (I think I might even have enjoyed it more if I had planned it better on my side). They are very good at making independent travellers tours. Some of the guys in my tour were travelling together but most were on their own and you just get paired for the hotel which makes it cheaper as you don’t have to pay a single supplement.

They do a Costa Rican holiday – actually they do 2: the reefs and jungle tour and the Surf and Volcanoes one. Both look amazing and would take about 10 days, which is I think the max I would be able to take in one go with work. Now the thing is I am wondering, should I then think about this one for next say September/Oct/Nov or squeeze it in for Feb/Mar as I will have carried forward 4 days from this year holiday count which I will need to take before the end of March.

I know that I need to keep some time for Xmas as the company shuts down at Xmas and also some time to catch with my girlfriends as we are planning a reunion in Brittany.

I have also decided that as I will turn 40 in 2014 (I know brrr..!!!) I want to treat myself to an awesome holiday and start saving for it and maybe get people to sponsor some of it (instead of buying me silly presents) and as I have always wanted to go to Hawaii, I think it would be perfect. I have always said that Hawaii was were I wanted my honeymoon…but I don’t think I’ll ever get one so why wait?

The issue I am having is finding the appropriate resources for that one. I don’t want to be stuck in one place, but Hawaii is not particularly a destination for adventurers…lots of couples and honeymooners and I worry that it might be annoying.

I want to learn how to surf, so maybe I should choose the Surf and Volcanoes trip to Costa Rica for next year, as there is some surfing lesson possible there, so I would be ready for Hawaii?

There are so many places in the world I still want to see and it is annoying to have to do it alone…and then again, what if I buy a flat next year? Will have I have enough money left to do a cool holiday per year?

Arrgh…so many questions, so many choices…

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