23.09.2014 - 04.09.2015 88 °F
Nearly one year since we sold our house, our possessions, and quit my job to travel; I managed to lose 15 pounds, learn a lot, and have grown and changed for the better (I hope).
I acknowledge and offer deep gratitude to George for ALL the hard work he did researching, planning, and arranging all these months to make this trip of a lifetime possible and successful! Thank you husband.
Though George and I shared nearly every single day together, we obviously have different perceptions and personal experiences this past year.
I've been thinking about what has affected me the most for this conclusion travel post of my own.
We both have appreciated the opportunities to see friends and family in person (and some on Skype) this year.
We both loved visiting and hiking various National Parks.
But these are the moments and experiences that stand out the most for me, in somewhat chronological order:
- Experiencing Monument Valley in AZ
- The turquoise color of the Caribbean sea
- Going on a Pirate ship and snorkeling in Barbados
- Cancun, Chichen Itza and our first cenote 'Ik Kil', and MERIDA!
Oh Merida, you changed our lives. I'm beyond grateful that we met the amazing Maria, and for being welcomed into a community of the best people who make us feel like family. We can't wait to see you all soon.
- Iceland made a bigger impression on me that I expected, in a good way.
- The Mediterranean Cruise was an added bonus because it included destinations in Greece and Turkey, and other cities in Italy and France we had never been to.
- Hiking along the cliffs in Cadequez.
- Feeling more safe in Europe that I do in the states sometimes
- I've written this before, but I enjoyed discovering all the new cities in Europe that we had not planned on visiting originally.
- Niagara Falls was never on my bucket list, and there we were.
Also, the unexpected blessings of good timing, such as:
-Meeting my Aunts Mildred and Dorothy for lunch in Baltimore on the day of my Aunt Mildred's 94th birthday (which I didn't know prior)!
-Arriving in Milan for one night and learning of the World's Fair - and actually going to it.
-Arriving in Turin and learning of the Holy Shroud on rare display - and going to see it.
-Arriving in Jamestown NY, to see the Lucy & Desi Museum, unbeknownst to us, on Lucille Ball's birthday
-Meeting Maria while looking for a dentist in Merida.
-Traveling to Europe while the Euro was cheaper.
-Driving through the U.S when the gas prices were low.
- I don't really need a lot of material stuff, but I still like to spend money on books/e-books. I can definitely get by with fewer clothes and shoes though.
- It's pretty simple to get exercise in most days with just a little outdoor space. I did sets of various circuits to work strength and cardio. (i.e. jumping jacks, burpies, walking lunges, jump squats, push ups, planks...) I also did yoga on small floor spaces as often as possible. I discovered Adriene's awesome free yoga videos.
- To lessen my grip on irrational thoughts and worries sooner and get on with the day. (This takes constant self awareness and will probably be something I always work on) I did not want to miss being present in each and every day, and I am convinced that both prayer and yoga go a long way!
I still hope to someday travel to South America, Australia, and New Zealand in the future. But now, I really look forward to staying put for a while once we get to Merida. This year has taught me that I do not have a desire to be a digital nomad, but I still agree with my original desire to live in two different places during the year. For now this means Merida, and possibly somewhere on the East Coast (Europe still sounds better to us though down the line).
I look forward to using our resourcefulness (that we learned in Oakland) to furnish our Merida house. I look forward to having guests and trying out Airbnb with our casita. I look forward to finding new ways to generate income and finding/trying new avenues of work. I'm sure there will be more thoughts and more insights down the road, but this blog is coming to and end. I will continue writing and sharing once we create a new blog to 'house' our next chapter.
Thanks to everyone who took the time to read, and to comment. We always enjoy hearing from you. If any post we wrote was helpful or encouraging in any way, I am honored.