Thoughts on the road - Safety First

Ok so it's getting really close to me going now and my family are getting more worried mainly about my safety so i thought i'd so a post on what things i have got to protect my self and i hpe it gives my friends and family some peace of mind and helps others.

Firstly my husband bought me a a key ring light with a very loud alarm with it, kind of a 2 in 1 gadget.
You press the white button you get the light, you pull the key chain and you get the alarm (when i tested it worked my dogs went mad so its loud) 

This is my whistle evern one told me to get one and i was like "WHY" then i thought about it bit and i read peoples stories they all thanked there whistle for saving there lives. So the next day i went out and bought my own whistle from the camping shop it was in the sale i struck lucky.

My head torch trust me when i tell you, you will never win any competition for look's 
or style with this thing on!! but it had 4 different style of flashes i didn't know that till i got batteries for it and tried it i thought Bargain, only cost me £4 off Ebay.
1: turn on light
2: Brighter
3: even brighter
4: Flashing light

My amazing camera skills hahaha

I also have a yellow reflective jacket i forgot to take a picture that's only for ex-stream situation i might now even need it but it's worth having it. Just in case!

If you have any safety tips for anybody please don't for get to share them and comment

3 Day's With The Family

I don't often get to see my family very much we both have things on well our own life's to lead really, were not a very close family but we are protective family. There's not pictures of people because i don't think its right putting my family at the criticism of people i am fine with it but i couldn't hack it if some one say's some thing nasty about my family.

Me waiting for the train im not much of a people person and i hate kids!

What i was wearing:
Denim dress
tie dyed t-shirt
opeque tights
knee boots
my gigantic orange scarf
purple cardigan

train ticket's. It was cheaper getting a open return than a normal return.

my two travelling talkers very nice ladies

One of the books  was reading its about how the mafia and the mob controlled the police 
force and police who worked for the mafia.

Another book i was reading it about a man who loads of crazy stuff in this life and he tell's his story

This is my daddy's dog tigger he is sooo but HUGE sweet.

This is my baby mogwai i have had her since i was a young one she my best friend she also very old she is 13 now and very frail, when i went home i spoiled her as usual

I stayed with my family from Tuesday till Thursday. Staying with my family was better than i had expected and it will be the last time i stay with them for a while now with me going away backpacking at the end of October my dad also bought me some collapsible cups for going away with.


Congratulation's You Did It

Firstly i want to say congratulation to my friend Georgina Bos for completing her cycling vacation from Netherlands to Paris.

This is what she said when she finished
6 days, 45.5 hours including breaks, 500 km of cycling and I am here. I feel completely empty. During cycling I did not think of anything and that for 6 days, only cycling and getting to my destination. After Saint-Quentin I couldn't cycle so much any more, had to take more breaks, although the road was mainly going down.

Yesterday when I saw the sign of Paris 44 km, it made me so happy. And if I wanted to have more adrenaline in my body I for sure succeed. Before entering 
Paris, it was like cycling on the highway with my bicycle of course still hilly. Sometimes I went downhill with for sure 40 km, hoping my bike of 20 euros would hold...because if I would have an accident, I for sure would me dead.

I do understand why people do this kind of vacation by themselves. For me it was a very interesting holiday, just me on the bicycle to Paris, meeting people on the way via Couchsurfing. I slept in people their housing and it was really a great experience. In Compiegne my host took me to a Couchsurfing meeting, really nice. After that we went into the forest to look at the stars and listen to the sound of the deers in the mating season. Thank you Claire Ette and CS Compiegne, was really cool.

Thanks for all the cool reactions!
You are a true hero sister love you 

Thoughts on the road - Maps, Direction, France Route

My faithful followers well i have done a bit of organizing tonight for my trip as i said before i am starting in spain where i will be staying with Kat for a few days (catch up days i call them) here's the low down iv organised so far.

1: Fly to Spain on the 30th October 2012.
2: Stay with kat till the 4th November.
3: Head to Montpelier i will be staying with my host from the 4th to the 6th.
4: Leave Montpelier on the 6th head for Bagnols - sur - ceze, i will be staying there for 2 days .
5: Leave Bagnols - sur - ceze on the 8th then head for a village called Goudargues this will take me about 3 hours to walk, little less if i bike it. 
6: After spending a few hours at Goudargues i will be catching the bus/ train to Lyon.
7: I will be staying in Lyon from the 8th till 10th. 
8: Then i arrive at Paris, from the 10th till 17th - i want to visit some amazing thing in Paris that's why i am staying a whole week.
9: Reims 17th till 19th 
10: Metz 19th till 22nd before heading to Luxembourg.

Here's a link from Bagnols - sur - ceze to Goudargues this is the route i will be walking walking route

I know some of you might think i am only spending a few day there that's just because i want to! After that i haven't really thought about it i think ill just wing it, best way! Also i have timed and dated everything threw France that's just to help me get my bearings and up my confidence a bit more to start with.

I used to live on a camp site between Bagnols - sur - ceze and Goudargues, i visited these 2 places regularly and fell madly in love with them now is my chance to visit them again and make great new memories.
Here's some pictures of when i was there last i think it was back in 2008

This is bagnols - sur - ceze i know it don't really show you the place but it is amazing that day there was a monster truck show happening which i did get to watch.

Now this is Goudarges, yes there is a frog behind me!

We watched a bunch of old men playing ball's here a few days before, we visited a flea market i had to be dragged away.

Do you have any great memories of France?


Thought on the road - Map's, Direction's, Spain

Well i have news my friend Kat has broke some bone in her hand trying to move a washing machine and can't drive so i have to get my self from Girona Airport to the town center then from the town center on a bus to Palafrugell. I hope i get on the right bus.

Here's a link from the Airport to the town center it will take about 2 1/2 hours to walk: walking to the town centre

Now i have to get on the right bus..........!

Here's a link to the map from Girona to palafrugell: Journey to Palafrugell This map is in walking style but i'll be on public transport so it might be a shorter ride.

I am staying with kat till the 4th then heading over to Montpelier, France.

Have you ever heard of this place?
I never had until my friend mentioned she lived there now.


Bite of the mango.

Over the past 2 days i have been reading a book called "Bite of the mango" by Mariatu Kamara 

I just can put it down i love it so much i stayed up most of the night last night reading it this young ladies story is incredible.

What the book is about: 
As a child in a small rural village in Sierra Leone, Mariatu lived peacefully surrounded by her family and friends. Rumours of the rebel attacks we no more than a distant worry. But the twelve year old set out for a neighbouring village, she never arrived. Heavily armed rebel soldiers, many no older than children themselves, attacked and tortured Mariatu. During this brutal act of senseless violence the cut off both her hands.

Here is a link to the book if anyone is interested in buying it or reading it the site is called Green Metropolis you sell and buy books and you can also choose to donate money to different charities bite of the mango
The book has many different front covers but the all tell the same story.

There a few lines in this book that cought in my chest

"Don't look back Mariatu. If you look back you will live your life with regrets and what-could-have-been's. Always look forward.


Thoughts on the road - culture shock

Well i have some good news and some thing i want to discuss that has been bothering me.

Good News: I have bought my travel insurance yesterday and my flight to Spain (my first destination). 

I will be leaving at 6am in the morning which will get me in to Spain by 9 ish from Manchester to Girona then i will have to walk 20 Min's from the airport to the Girona town centre to catch a train to palafrugal were i will be staying with my friend Kat for 4 days.

What's been bothering me: I have been reading a few articles about going away and coming back they call it culture shock.

I wont get it so much when i get out there because i can adapt very easy to my surrounding's (i have a lot of common sense).
The problem is reversal culture shock when i have to come back to the UK. Now i personally don't like the UK i think most of the people here are arrogant and cold. Don't get me wrong i was born and bred in Cumbria in a little town called Barrow in Furness (the caption should be "were dreams are crushed and family's are interbred"). 
My main problem is when I'm out there i know i wont want to come back it was the same when i lived in France, i didn't want to come back! and not years later all i can think about is getting away.

Here's a few thing's i read about reversal culture shock:

Nobody cares about your travels.

If no one asks you about your trip keep your exciting adventures to your self, some people might now even know you went away.

Normality will hit hard.

Once you have drunk your fave coffee or visited you fave CD shop then routine normality will hit you hard.
if you go to the supermarket you wont find many exotic food's also if you have lived there all you life then there wont be no historical attraction.

People just wont understand you.

its pretty common thing that when you have been away for a long period of time you become more open minded and have different opinions 

Some will be Jealous.

be careful not to drop your tale in to too many conversations you will get some funny looks and remember not many people will have the opportunity to do this.

Worst of all you might feel stuck.

budget airlines make it easy for people to got to Paris for the weekend but when your depressed and full of culture shock in your on country you will feel very isolated and stuck.
getting away will seem impossible, you next adventure will seem very far away and very expensive.

Plan your next trip.

plan you next trip or holiday there a whole world out there, see it!

Still cant get rid of culture shock here are a few funny thing you might want to consider.

Greet everyone with the following questions: What's your name? Where are you from? How long have you been on the road? What food are you carrying? Would you like to trade books?

move your bed to the noisiest place you can find. if no one is around go outside and round up some complete strangers and ask if they would like to share our room.

next time you see some one reading the newspaper move up close to them peering over there shoulder, smile and ask if they don't mind sharing.

open you kitchen cupboard pull out all the labels with the foreign languages on mix them all together pull a face and swallow.

find a bus....any bus.....get on it. Immediately start talking to you seat partner ask all the question you would on a long journey like "do they have any toilet stops"

fill your backpack carry it around with you all the time even to work put it in you draw and peace of mind knows its there.

throw out all you shoes except a pair of walking boots, flip flops (shower shoes) and some sandals.

don't take the elevator it's never been checked since it was installed anyway.

Joking apart, reverse culture shock does have its positives and one of the most wonderful things about distant or long-term travel is the wealth of experience and understanding you bring back with you when you home.
Hang on to that open-mindedness, and share what you've leaned. You'll make your world a better place because of your travels.

What's your take on culture shock, have you experienced it? what did you do to conquer it?


Maple Seeds Tattoo

My new tattoo haha

Maple seeds great memories from being a child i used to have hours of fun with these little seeds. I don't know if you did this when you were a child but we did we used to get these seeds and pretend they were helicopters we would throw them in the air and watch them spin around like the blades of a helicopter. 

I am getting the seeds but with out the writing.

My baby of a tattoo i got today


Things to keep the spirit going

Thank you 30 seconds to Mars

Hope they brighten your day?