“The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.”
Kathy and I are finalizing our travel plans for 2013. We both love to travel and try to take one major trip to Europe each year. Kathy’s an Anglophile (been to Great Britain 14 times) so guess where our next trip will be. Kathy needs to do some genealogical research in Scotland. We plan to fly into Glasgow and then head out to the Highlands (Loch Ness – home of the famous monster, Culloden (1745 battle of Culloden fame), Glencoe (site of the famous massacre of the MacDonalds by the Campbells) and Loch Lomond. I have always been fond of Shetland ponies so I’m lobbying for visiting the Shetland Isles. Kathy is half Irish (I also have a few Irish ancestors) so research demands that we visit Northern Ireland and track down some long lost relatives. We also plan to do a little sightseeing and that of course will include the Giants-Causeway (it is made up of some 40,000 massive black basalt columns sticking out of the sea. The dramatic sight has inspired legends of giants striding over the sea to Scotland). We will then return to London and satiate ourselves with fine dining, good theater, museum browsing and top flight guided walking tours.
I am in the early stages of planning second trip by myself. Kathy has limited desire to travel to destinations other than Europe and absolutely no desire to rough it in the wilderness or endure any other form of perceived deprivation and hardship. When I was seriously considering going to New Guinea, Kathy’s response was “I’ll be glad to drive you to the airport”. A friend of mine travelled around on a freighter for awhile and saw quite a few countries. This intrigued me until I discovered that one of the adventures was being chased by pirates for two days. I have discovered two excellent reference sources to help me sort out where I want to go and what I want to do: International Travel News and the Road Scholar. And of course the internet provides all sorts of wonderful blogs for travel tips and inspiration to broaden your horizons. I enjoy birding and was surprised to discovered a lot of enjoyable birding adventures are available in the United States (California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina and even Minnesota where I live); Canada also provides interesting possibilities – British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec offer trips that look promising. Cost is always a consideration and it’s so much cheaper to vacation closer to home. Cuba intrigues me not only because of the culture but the cost is reasonable compared to overseas travel. It’s so much fun to consider all the possibilities. Anticipation/planning and the afterglow of having had a big adventure is almost as much fun as the adventure itself.