A time to think and plan, in equal measure

Ooh eck, I’ve had a little break from blogging again and I promised I wouldn’t do that (double ooh eck). Still, life is good and I have some new stories to tell about a big apple and a little Welsh island. They are different stories, in case you were wondering. More on those soon.

I have also been busy making plans. Big plans. In fact, it’s really just one huge plan that’s going to take my husband and I around the world for five months in just under three weeks’ time.

There are times when I live in the real world but lately I have been doing a fair bit of stepping back and forth across the line into cloud cuckoo land, forgetting that it’s not always quite as easy as one, two, three to just drop everything and ‘go travelling’. Surely it is…you just go, don’t you?! At times, this is what a myriad of travel blogs and magazines seem to have us believe but in the real world it’s frustratingly not quite as simple as that. Luckily I have a slightly more ‘with it’ marital sidekick to help make sure that whilst still going with the flow, we also take a bit of time to think things through a little. This way at least one of us will have a job to come home to, a good thing I suppose because it will enable us to pay the mortgage on our house and allow us to live in it again; both of which do, come to think of it, sound like remarkably excellent ideas. It would also, I suppose, be handy to have a few pounds left in the bank for when we land back on home turf in April 2017.

The planning part of any trip is always great fun. It’s the part you spend doing dot-to-dot pictures on blown-up maps, connecting lively cities with relaxing spots and some culture or rural villages thrown in for good measure. It’s the part you spend reading about well-trodden routes and itineraries that will ensure you see the ‘must see’ sights whilst also seeking out those little gems of knowledge that only come from those who have experienced somewhere with their own eyes. Friends and family, bloggers, film-makers and travel writers alike can bring a place to life and tell you something unique. Even better if what they tell you is unique to them alone. It’s usually those moments where you catch a sparkle in someone’s eye as they recount a funny story or moment from their trip – whether it be a weekend away, a two week holiday or a month long epic road-trip. Sometimes you ‘just had to be there’ but those are often the very best stories because they are so beautifully etched in the person’s mind that they tell it with such clarity and familiarity you almost feel as if you were there too.

Our plan started with a few scribbles on a scrap of paper a very long time ago, during one of our frequent journeys up and down the M6 to visit my family and friends down south. Now less than three weeks’ away, we still have quite a lot to accomplish before the dream becomes a reality but we are oh so nearly there…

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