One of my favourite jobs that I had during university (and I had a lot) was tour guiding. While Bucknell is far from perfect, at the end of the day I love the community, education, and overall experience I had during my four years there. Getting to share that experience and that love of Bucknell with prospective students was amazing.
When I told one of my friends who had been to Malta just a few months ago that I would be spending 6 days here, he told me I would be bored. It's a small country with not much to do, he said. And while it is small, and the sites are limited compared to other destinations, there is plenty to do and I was far from bored. Every day I spent in Malta my love for the tiny nation grew and grew.
Sunday morning we woke up early to say goodbye to a few Monsooners whose trip was ending in Podgorica, and for the rest of us to head to Ostrog Monastery. It was an easy 15 minute walk to the bus station from our hostel, and then about an hour bus ride to the city Niksic. From there the 10 of us squeezed into two taxis which would wait for us and take us back to the station. It was hot and uncomfortable, but for only €20 for each taxi and this incredible monastery, it was well worth it.
This morning, after grabbing breakfast and checking out of our hostel in Belgrade, all of us pilled into a bus that would take us from Serbia to Bosnia and Herzegovina. The drive - for the portions of it that I was awake for - was breathtaking. We passed through small river towns, mountains, villages, and farm land. The constant change in scenery revealed just how dynamic and incredible Bosnia and Herzegovina is.
After months of planning and anticipation, the time has finally come to begin my year of travel. And it didn't get off to the smoothest start, buy hey that's part of travel.
Let me start this post by bragging on my brilliant friend Natalie. They were basically my personal tour guide today and is essentially a walking history book on Czechia. It was a perfect balance of getting to see the typical touristy things in Prague but also a more local feel to the city. I also appreciated their love for Prague. It's truly amazing how much someone sharing their love of a place can make you fall in love with it too.
So after checking out and leaving my luggage in their storage (I literally don’t know how I would function while traveling if it weren’t for hostels’ luggage storage), I made my way to the bus stop to wait for my bus to Glendalough and got on my phone to book a THIRD hostel in Dublin. I got pretty used to changing sleeping locations every night on the Trans Siberian/Mongolian trip this past January, but we were always either in a new city or on our way to a new city when that happened. So three hostels over three nights in a single city feels a little excessive.
You know that super cheesy cliché, “you should do one thing every day that scares you,” that is attributed to Eleanor Roosevelt? Well I’m terrified of heights. I have been for pretty much as long as I can remember. Not in a way that’s debilitating: I’m generally able to push through but it’s always with a feeling of impending doom in my stomach that makes me want to vomit and go crying to my mommy. I remember almost pissing myself the first time I flew in a plane (which was when I was 15, flying from Atlanta to Frankfurt) because I was so scared of being that high up. While I’m not that scared of heights anymore, I still get a queasy feeling in the pit of my stomach every time I’m higher than a few stories without a solid wall in front of me. The Cliffs of Moher is a really solid location to face that fear and today I did just that.