Hi everyone! Happy Monday! 🙂
Today it’s all about travel! I saw this post last week going around, through Unlocking Kiki and Snow in Tromso, and I thought that I would get inspired by both set of questions and share my answers with y’all today!
A) Age you went on your first international trip?
One. My mother and I travelled all the way down to South America to go visit my father’s family in Chile in 1991.
B) Best Beach and where?
Possibly the beach in Gijon, Spain. Beautiful and warm – and I think that after a year in Scotland, I was just so utterly enthusiastic at the idea!
C) Favourite Cuisine?
I’m not a big cuisine person – I’m very picky – and I can’t say I’ve loved the cuisine of anywhere I’ve visited yet (…I’m looking at you, Italy!). But I have to say that pastry wise, France wins my heart!
D) Destinations — favorite, least favorite, and why?
Most favorite: Cape Town, South Africa. I think I was so out of my element and I was there with one of my favourite persons ever!
Least favorite: Toronto, Canada. I’m very sorry to all my friends from there – but it did not enchant me. Hopefully one day it will prove me wrong.
E) Event you’ve experienced abroad that made you say “wow”?
The first time I saw the Paris skyline was one of those absolute ‘wow’ moments – literal jaw drop! I even wrote a whole post about it.
F) Favorite mode of transportation?
I like them all – except buses and boats, but that’s mainly because they make me feel ill. I love walking within a destination and between them, train or plane, whatever is most convenient or cheaper!
G) Greatest feeling while traveling?
Finally being able to orient yourself – finding your way in a new city without a map. I think the first time I can walk ‘home’ to the hotel or find my way to a friend’s place, is the moment I start really loving that place and feeling like I belong. I obviously love being there long enough for that to happen.
H) Second Home?
St Andrews. Home is where I felt completely myself – with all these crazy people. There is nothing else to add.
I) Best Ice cream ever had?
I haven’t been to Italy yet, so I’ll be forced to say that the best ice cream I’ve ever had was at the Jannettas Gelateria in St Andrews! Their Ferrero Rocher ice cream is to die for!
J) Journey that took the longest?
Going to South Africa definitely took a while! Left the flat in London at about 5-6am on the Tuesday morning and arrived in SA at about noon the next day. I obviously have my 8-hour layover in Dubai to thank for that.
K) Keepsake from your travels?
I weirdly really love fridge magnets. At my parents’ house in Montreal there are literally fridge magnets from everywhere in the world that I have been to! I’m working on it for the current flat! I also love postcards, cheap and great way to have a little memory of the place you just went to.
L) Let-down sight, where and why?
The Eiffel Tower – the first time I saw it from afar it was very special and yet the first time I saw it from up close I can say I was disappointed.
M) Moment where you fell in love with traveling?
Oh that is so hard to remember because I’m pretty sure it was when I was a child. When I was about 8, I went to Chile with my dad and missed about a week of class. It was during March break from school and we escaped the dark and cold winter of Canada to head to warm Chile. I think that is about one of the first moments when I realised what an amazing escape from life travel was – as well as still being one of those valued experience that teach you so much.
N) Nicest view and from where?
View over Valparaiso, Chile. It is such a crazy, piled up, colourful, vibrant coastal city and I had some of my best memories there.
O) What are you Obsessed with taking pictures of while traveling?
Trees. I really don’t know why – and I’m also really terrible at nature shots, but I just love trees!
P) Passport stamps-how many and from where?
Too many to count, to be honest, since I have had 5 different passports to date. Countless from Chile, the US and the UK. And super happy that, because I’m not a citizen, I get stamped by every European country I visit as well!
Q) Quirkiest traditions you’ve ever taken part in?
Anything related to the University of St Andrews! I think Raisin takes the prize though – from the tea party, to the scavenger hunt, to the foam fight!
R) Really Frightening: where’s one place you’ve visited where you felt unsafe or uneasy?
I’ve been meaning to write a post about this one actually. I think that I expected it in South Africa and I was frightened because of that. It is renowned for not being the safest place – but that said, nothing ever happened and I was always very safe! The spiders actually caused me more scare than anything else…
S) Splurge-something you have no problem spending money on while traveling?
A must live experience – I splurged on a safari in South Africa, macarons in Paris, museums and sights in Berlin, etc.
T) Touristy thing you’ve done?
Oh I have my moments – depending of who I’m with, I’ll either be shy about doing touristy things or be really into it! I’ll just leave you with this gorgeous photo of myself in Asturias…
U) Unforgettable travel memory?
There are so many! From my first look at Table Mountain in Cape Town, to graduation in St Andrews, to Hogmanay in Inverness, to Christmas with family in Chile, to a day trip to Quebec City, to visiting Harvard Uni, to walking the streets of London, to going to school in Berlin, to all the amazing people I’ve encountered along the way. As Danielle said ‘I could no sooner choose a favourite star in the heavens’.
V) Visas-how many and for where?
2 different – both for Great Britain.
W) Best glass of Wine while traveling?
I’ve only recently started to drink wine and enjoy it and I have to say that doing the rounds of the wine farms in the Western Cape of South Africa was special. Bubbly is always my favourite!
X) Xenophobia encountered?:
Oh this is getting serious …. Thankfully enough I’ve never really encountered any of that. However, I do get the occasional encounter with ignorant people. I’ve had my fair share of Anglo Canadians be weird with me when my English wasn’t so good. I’ve had my fair share of weird looks in South America. I’ve also had my fair share of weird ignorant comments from Europeans. But I think in general, in a face to face contact, I’ve been very well received and respected everywhere!
So earlier this year I decided that I wanted to go yachting – call it the St Andrews influence. Then the Brit and I realised that one of the benefits of alumni membership with St Andrews is this discount on yachting trips. When I have a job, that is totally happening!
Z) Time-Zones visited?:
I think I’ve gone to 8 different time zones. I mean, to be honest, I’ve been to 4 only in Canada, so it really helps when your country is giant!
What are your ABCs of travel?xx