Posts Tagged ‘reflections’
Here’s a truism if there ever was one: Travel widens your horizons.
You can know a lot of things intellectually, theoretically – but often you can’t really grasp them until you’ve experienced them firsthand. Don’t it always seem to go, that you don’t know what you got till it’s gone?
What would my ideal city be? I’m still stumped. Somewhere warm, but not punishingly hot. That poses a problem for T, though. We would prefer to live at opposite ends of the globe in that sense – I’d decamp to a sunny island, he to Antarctica. Other criteria:
- Somewhere with advanced transport – a comprehensive metro system.
- Somewhere with diverse, awesome and affordable food options, including a range of ethnic choices.
- Somewhere with cheap/free entertainment options year round.
- Somewhere with proximity to beaches, and maybe bush, mountains, etc.
- Somewhere that doesn’t have a sky high cost of living, or at least a place where incomes and costs are in line, proportionally speaking.
I’ve yet to find this magical city, and I fear it does not exist.
While New York is now my absolute favourite destination in the world, it’s not my forever city. Sure, it seems like a fabulous place to live in your 20s, but long term… probably not so much.
Toronto was another city T and I found ourselves nodding at. Canada seems pretty close to perfect as a country goes; it has the good stuff you enjoy in the US (low prices, a range of ethnic cuisines, good customer service) and none of the bad (guns, healthcare, lack of employee rights, the imperial system, litigiousness – did anyone else adore that Don monologue to the lawyer in The Newsroom?). But the weather! I doubt I’d survive a single Canadian winter.
I thought I would return home either with a newfound fervent love for New Zealand, or the exact opposite. Turns out, it’s a grudging mix of both, tilted slightly in favour of the former.
My city has its faults. But I also need to appreciate what we do have.
- Auckland has ridiculously unpredictable and rainy weather, but it’s milder than almost anywhere else in the world. A variance of about 15 degrees from hottest to coldest really isn’t very much at all. Many parts of the world have it so much worse; sure, they have lovely hot, dry summers, but by the same stroke, bitter, snowy winters.
- We have the most pathetic excuse for public transport, but we aren’t under CCTV surveillance everywhere we go. Nor do we have armed police.
- We have no squirrels, but also, we have no scary/poisonous creatures (or even plants) that are out to get you.
- It’s hard to get ahead if you’re part of the squeezed middle class, but we do have a reasonably laid back and egalitarian culture.
- We don’t have anywhere near the variety of cuisines that bigger international cities have to offer (though that’s sloooooowly improving), but at least we don’t put high fructose corn syrup in everything.
- Everything costs a lot. There’s no getting around that. But, erm, at least we don’t add sneaky taxes at the till?
I realise things in Auckland are unlikely to change. We are too small for mass transit; we don’t have the density and possibly never will. We like our houses, detached ones. (That goes for me, too.) It’s a city that’s desirable enough that prices keep steady or continue to increase; there’s still enough money around, both local and international, to feed this – even if the rest of us get left behind and priced out. We are too small for competition in consumer markets and far away from other countries – the tyranny of distance still exists for certain kinds of goods.
Living in New Zealand really is a lifestyle choice. Now, at least I’m a heck of a lot more aware of the sacrifices I’m making in exchange for what I get.
What tradeoffs do you make to live where you live? Have you found your forever city?
Tags: life, reflections, travel
Out of an entire week in Paris, we managed one day under budget (and that’s one more than I expected, to be quite honest). We more or less stayed in our Airbnb apartment, watched movies, cooked at home and relaxed.
Confessing that feels strange; it feels like admitting to having wasted a perfectly good day in an amazing foreign city. But the thing is, you need ‘weekends’ while travelling, too. Being on the go all the time, while not ‘work’ in the typical sense of meetings + endless emails + squinting at a screen, does take it out of you.
(Let’s not get into the fast travel vs slow travel debate here. Rushing around trying to cram three days of sights into 12 hours isn’t for everyone, but neither is flying halfway across the world only to be stuck inside working and not getting to see anything at all, while proclaiming you’re a ‘real’ traveller because you’re living like a local. Yes, there’s something to be said for simply BEING in a new and exotic place … but that only goes so far.)
T and I are naturally slothful creatures. That quickly became apparent while we were away, too. Somehow, it worked out that we had a day off once a week, more or less (sometimes two). Whether we were in Phnom Penh, Ho Chi Minh, Edinburgh, Berlin, Bologna, Athens, Grindelwald, New York, New Orleans, or Flagstaff, we carved out time to sleep in, watch movies, and recharge just as we would in daily life.
Bonus: if you freelance, those are the perfect days to catch up on work.
Tags: reflections, travel
is absolutely astounding.
I envisioned couchsurfing across Europe; we ended up hostelling and hoteling. (We did surf a few times though, and hosts generously drove us to the train station/lent us bikes/gave up their beds for us). I then envisioned us couchsurfing across North America, and instead, we ended up staying with so many generous blog friends. Not to mention the many others who took the time to show us around, take us out to eat, or put together adorable goody bags/welcome packs for us.
We also miss your pets! We’ve met so many awesome dogs along the way, which was such an eye-opener for me; to date, almost all the dogs I’ve ever encountered back home are outside dogs that belong to, erm, Westie trash types and fall into one or more of the following categories: dirty/mangy/loud/ill-behaved/scary. By contrast, I now know that clean, housetrained, inside dogs DO exist.
I think it was a little weird for T, but he quickly got used to the idea that we’d be meeting semi-strangers in almost every city we visited. There was Manda in DC, Sandy in Massachussetts, Asian Pear / Save Spend Splurge in Toronto, Windy City Gal in Chicago, Athena / Funny About Money in Phoenix, Revanche / Untemplater / Financial Samurai in SF, Tiny Apartment / Erika / Stacking Pennies / Tonya in LA. I can’t forget Lesley in Iceland (formerly of 23toLife.com), either, plus we narrowly missed a few others along the way (so close!): Leslie, Amber, Daisy, Katie, Stephanie (I’m really hoping I haven’t forgotten anyone! Eek!)
I can’t thank you guys enough, and hopefully we’ll be able to return one day to relive the magic. It’s probably going to be quite awhile before we leave NZ again though … so, come see us soon. Okay?
Tags: reflections, travel
“What happens when we go home? Do we just work till we die?”
(October 21, 2013, filed under Shit My Husband Says)
For the past six months, I’ve lived in a perpetual state of flux. I’ve never known what the week ahead will bring, let alone what lies in store for us the next day. I’ve gotten pretty comfortable with uncertainty, and now, it’s time to get used to routine again. To get up in the morning knowing, more or less, what to expect from the coming 24 hours.
I’m not unhappy about that. I could use some structure again. I want some of the conventional things that society dictates I should want, and I’m not ashamed to admit it: a steady income, a house of my own, maybe even a pet and kids someday.
What I don’t want is to sink into mundanity. The older you get, the faster the time seems to go, and I don’t want to lose precious weeks or days to a forgettable rote existence. I want to make memories, not just once a year, but throughout the year. A life that doesn’t warrant escape. One without the Monday blues. And I want this for both T and myself, with the knowledge that I’m much further along this path than he is, and that it’ll take work to craft that mutually happy existence.
If our priorities change, a few months or a few years from now, then maybe we could do this again. Work and save for a few years, travel for a while, then come home, rinse and repeat. Maybe we can craft a lifestyle where we work for 10 months a year and travel for 2. Or maybe we’ll choose the traditional middle-class route, and treasure the memory of the last six months like a precious stone, bringing it out every so often to admire, polish, and remind ourselves that once upon a time we were young and carefree with the whole world in front of us.
Work till we die, or work till we retire. Sound depressing? In a sense, it is … but it’s only a terrifying thought if we fail to make the most of life in between – in our careers, in our relationships, in our hobbies.
Tags: life, reflections, travel
Long-term travel changes you, sometimes in ways you could never have anticipated.
I have so much more respect for people who do our grunt work
The people who produce our food. Who make sure our trains and ferries run smoothly. Getting out of the office and experiencing so many facets of the tourism industry and beyond has given me way more appreciation for their contributions. It may not be the most enthralling work in the world but it’s work that needs to be done. Even as we move toward a weightless economy, some of the most seemingly simple work remains the most crucial.
I’m way more environmentally conscious
It started back in Asia, with all the water bottles T and I must have added to landfill. And it only got worse from there. All the little individually wrapped items on planes, in hotels, and so on… When you live out of your backpack, you become hyper aware of everything that passes through your hands. Paper – maps, tickets, receipts. Packaging. Plastic bags (terrible for the environment as they are, they’re still very handy and in some cases, necessary). Plus, having been through the likes of the Netherlands and Germany, we’ve seen how recycling really gets done. Come on New Zealand, we’ve got a lot to catch up on.
I’m more globally-minded
Back home, world events just seem so far away. Protests, riots, bombings all take place on the other side of the globe. Buffered by oceans on all sides, it’s easy to get complacent in our isolation. But being in the thick of it all for a change is a reminder of how closely we’re all connected. When the US was first considering strikes on Syria, we were in Italy. And that’s when I realised: Whoa. We’re not at home anymore. That’s only a couple of countries over. That’s REALLY FREAKING CLOSE TO US RIGHT NOW. (You may find this beginner’s guide to Syria helpful, if you’re interested.)
There are some benefits to living in a young country
As one of the most recently settled countries around, New Zealand has a short and relatively dull history. We don’t have much in the way of culture to speak of. It’s not surprising that a lot of travellers find it boring here.
The upside of that, though, is that we don’t have the integration problems that many other countries have, or at least not to the same extent. Every country has its own racists (usually of the type who conveniently ignore the fact that their ancestors were immigrant settlers not so long ago), but compared to many other countries, I honestly believe that our race relations are positively rosy. We’re also largely spared the strange dilemma that old cities face: how to preserve their heritage while incorporating new influences; modernising without diluting their traditions and culture.
It’s human nature to play the comparison game
I find myself trying to draw parallels constantly. Oh, this must be about as far as Hamilton is from Auckland. Oh, this looks just like our mountains! We draw on our knowledge of the familiar to make sense of what’s new around us. I find this annoying when other people do this too much, but I’m guilty of it myself.
On a similar note, I’ve also come to realise the true power of a strong brand. They can be a lifesaver in a foreign country – Coke, Twix, Subway, or of course, that familiar beacon the world over, McDonald’s. And after flying with a bunch of different airlines, I’ve got a lot of love for our national carrier, Air New Zealand. I genuinely think it’s up there with the best, and let’s face it, their flight videos kick ass.
Human beings are godawful
We suckity suckity suck. Our compulsion to meddle in other countries’ affairs, to invade and conquer and kill one another, is beyond belief. The more we travel, the more I realise just how dark and bloodsoaked our history truly is. And religion is to blame for a lot of it. I hate that there were – and still are – people willing to murder over religious differences. I suppose it’s admirable that there are people who are ready to die for their beliefs, but it’s all so heartbreakingly futile, particularly in cases where the two sides believe in basically the same god.
But it’s the people who make the place
People are people are people. I knew this already, of course. We’re all human beings, and essentially, we tick the same. We respond in kind, we take pride in where we come from, and we’re eager to help others if we can. Sure, sometimes there are significant cultural differences, and yes, stereotypes exist for a reason – but they’re often less prevalent than you might think.
And ultimately, people – the connections you make – are what make travel memorable. Amsterdam and Prague and Edinburgh were lovely, but Berlin, Munich, New York, Vermont, Toronto, Chicago… they will all stand out in my memories for the generous, welcoming and friendly people who welcomed us into their homes, who showed us around, who let us be a part of their lives.
Tags: life, reflections, travel
Today’s thought: It’s so much easier to travel when you’re still young.
The time/money tension is an interesting one. You have more of the former and not enough of the latter when young. Meanwhile, you might have less of the former and more of the latter when old. But money, at least theoretically, is something you can always earn more of. Time is finite. Sure, you might have student loans weighing on your back, but you’re less likely to have a mortgage and/or a family to support.
And there’s no telling what your health might be like later on. In your 20s, you’re more likely to be physically up for roughing it on a budget, not having become used to luxuries.
Right, now, we’re on the eve of embarking on our whirlwind North American tour. As exciting as it is, it’s also going to be gruelling. We’re as young and energetic as we can ever expect to be, though that’s not saying much. We’re kind of oldies at heart. For example, we ended up getting a taxi (actually more economical than the train) after landing in KL rather than the cheap bus. After an 11 hour flight, T wasn’t up for any more discomfort, and after having gone through the equivalent of my own body mass in tissues up in the air, I was inclined to agree. And T is already carting around the body of an old man, thanks to old sports injuries, high level athletics, and physical work – which has held us back at times.
I have no idea what kind of shape we’ll be in when we’re middle-aged or retired, but I am pretty confident we wouldn’t have even the (limited) stamina we have right now. Further, I’m not sure we’d be comfortable dossing on floors and couches (physically or otherwise), HelpXing, Couchsurfing, or AirBnB-ing. But then again, who knows what might have cropped up in that regard in 20 years’ time?
Visas are another thing to consider. As a New Zealand citizen, I’m lucky – we’re welcomed almost everywhere, and have visa waivers/exemptions in many countries. If you can swing it financially, fresh grads can move to the US to work and travel for a year as part of the snappily named New Zealand and Australia Twelve-Month Student Work and Recent Graduate Travel Program. If you’re 30 or under, there’s a dizzying array of countries offering working holiday visas, which to my understanding are virtually guaranteed – it’s just a matter of applying and paying the fee. Australians and New Zealanders seem to enjoy the most choices, but there are options for citizens of other countries, too.
For what it’s worth, the youth/under 26 discounts available to you might also be worth considering. We qualified for cheaper Eurail passes, an ISIC youth card, and other random discounts along the way.
An added benefit of travelling in our 20s is that it’s been a real growth experience. An invaluable experience. A life-shaping experience. I’m not sure we’d be as open-minded as we are now 20 or 30 years down the track; as receptive to new experiences and ideas. And let me tell you, if there’s one thing travel has taught me, it’s that I’m NOT as open-minded as I would like to think I am.
Travel is not for everyone. I’m not going to try to sell you on travel, if it’s not your cup of tea. And I don’t think it’s a terrible idea to wait to travel by any means, but if it’s a priority for you, there’s no time like the present.
Tags: reflections, travel
We’re well past the halfway mark on our RTW trip, and as we work out our three weeks on an Italian farm, I’ve had time to ponder some of the best and worst parts about it so far.
Things I will miss
Solar, solar everywhere!
It warms my heart to see fields of solar panels all through Europe as we whiz by on the train – or, as above, glimmering off tracts of houses. Maybe there is hope for the future after all.
Quiet streets (Germany-specific, mainly)
Germany was eerily quiet. There was no music playing in the first supermarket we visited and people were basically whispering to each other. People are quiet on the streets, in parks … even the kids in playgrounds. And you know what? I could get used to that – considerate citizens who don’t feel the need to broadcast their personal conversations or music playlists to every bystander in the area.
Best of all? The vehicles are all virtually silent. I LOVE THAT. I effing hate loud cars and loud bikes, the kind that disturb the peace constantly back home. If there’s any way to make Kiwi car culture sound as pathetic as it truly is, it’s attempting to explain it to a German. But why do people do that to their cars? Oh, errr, having your car go doof doof every other second makes you, I dunno, cool. Or something.
Free cash withdrawals
At home, you can only withdraw cash for free at your own bank’s ATMs. That said, I never use cash at home anyway – adjusting to using cash while travelling was a toughie. New Zealand was the first country to introduce eftpos cards, so electronic transactions are very much the norm.
Decent public transport
Subway systems! Actual rail networks, with huge stations and shops inside! Oh, it’s wondrous. I must blog about how much I prefer trains to planes…
Things I definitely won’t miss
Found mainly in Germany (though I believe we encountered our first one in Amsterdam). Bizarre, unhygienic, and kinda creepy. I can only concur with the following statement: The only conceivable explanation is that Germans love to inspect their stool, so the German toilet of necessity features a built-in stool inspection shelf..
We thought Asia was bad. Oh, how wrong we were. Spotting an indoor smoking booth at Athens airport was, in a word, tragic. No, we will not miss the ubiquitous smokers one bit.
I will never get used to this. I get twitchy whenever I see a cop out in public with a gun holster.
Taxes. Service charges. Cover charges. And so on. In New Zealand, the price tag is always final – you know what you’ll have to pay, and that’s that.
Paying for water
Again, we’re spoiled at home with our tap water for the most part. But Rome, for example, has perfectly serviceable water in my view – so being forced to pay for bottled water at restaurants rubbed me the wrong way. (Rome’s random outdoor spigots, though, are unbelieveably great. The ancient taps might look a tad rank, but the cold, clear water – which apparently comes from underground springs – is fantastic, and FREE. They run constantly and are a godsend when you’ve drained your bottle or just need to splash some water on your perspiring face.)
Paying for toilets
‘Nuff said. At least this generally corresponds with clean facilities, though. I think I’ve actually managed to avoid paying for any toilets since Asia; I usually manage to time it with a visit to a food outlet. Even so, I recall one McDonald’s that charged separately for the toilet. You could use that as a rebate towards your food purchase, but you’d need to visit the toilet before ordering in order to realise this – and I can’t imagine many people would make their way upstairs to use the restroom before ordering.
One thing you don’t get in New Zealand is people who are always trying to sell you stuff. Outside tourist attractions. On the street. At the beach, even. I have a real problem saying no, and thus I hate being anywhere near these guys (they’re almost always guys) selling hats, drinks, sunglasses, massages, or whatever. I know they’re just trying to earn a honest buck, but it makes me really uncomfortable. (I gotta harden up.)
Digging for gold (TMI warning)
Aka picking your nose (euphemism courtesy of an old teacher of mine from primary school). I cannot remember the last time I had to deal with solid nasal buildup at home. I have hayfever and a runny nose year around. Overseas, I have the opposite problem – hard bastards that build up in my nostrils like moss on a rock (sometimes restricting my airways) and require careful extraction at inconvenient times.
I used to LOVE travel planning. It was half the fun for me! But when you’re constantly plotting out your next move, it gets incredibly exhausting. The beauty of flexibility is you can change your plans on a whim, like staying an extra day in Switzerland so T could go canyoning (oh Eurail pass, how easy you make things), but it also creates a lot more work while you’re on the road. Personally, I find balancing flexibility with planning is difficult. I booked our Italy-Greece flights before leaving home, which I now think was probably too early and may have cost me money overall. On the other hand, I left booking our Greek ferry tickets to Santorini too late, because I didn’t want to spend the cash so far in advance … and ended up paying dearly when the cheap ferry sold out.
Tags: reflections, travel
Now that we’re halfway through our journey, I thought it might be time to pause and share a few random stats from the trip!
Biggest facepalm moment
Losing about 650 Thai baht (about $35 or so) one dark night, presumably to the back seat of a taxi. Even more galling: the driver didn’t have change for 1000 baht, which is why he took me to a 7/11 so I could buy something to break up the note in the first place. Cue gnashing of teeth afterwards when I dug into my pocket and realised I no longer had the change.
Biggest food gamble that paid off
Ordering bun moc from a street stall in Hanoi without actually knowing what it was, aside from the fact that it contained noodles. Honestly, I just liked the look of the word ‘moc’, and it seemed easier to pronounce than some of the other dishes.
Most affecting moment
The boy with the balloon head, horrifically bloated atop his undersized torso, cradled in the arms of an old woman in the corner of a temple at Angkor Wat.
Qatar Airways, Hanoi to Bangkok. Super short, but super luxurious.
The hellish train ride from Germany to Switzerland, on which there was no air con and the windows were sealed shut. Not just swelteringly uncomfortable, but downright dangerous in those temperatures.
Most memorable moment
Oh, there are so many, but probably the most unexpected and unusual was the Emerald Cave in Thailand. Bonus points for pushing me out of my comfort zone in order to get there.
Okay, it’s a bit of a copout as we only did 2 tours – but the winner would be Halong Bay. Beautiful scenery, fun activities – kayaking, attempting to make spring rolls together, karaoke – and a good group of people, not least of all our entertaining guide.
Most random sighting
Of all the things I expected to see on the streets of Edinburgh, the most pierced woman in the world would never have placed on the list. Weirdly, I’d seen her on TV not long before we left, but I had no idea where she lived.
Again, a bit of a copout, seeing as I’ve only read one book. Even worse, it was a kid’s book. But I’m not ashamed to say that Phantom Tollbooth is a wicked tale, and if you love language like I do, you’ll get a huge kick out of it. Especially enjoyable when picked up at a random coffee shop in Bangkok and accompanied by cake.
Biggest guilty pleasure
Mister Donut. Totally saved our lives in Hat Yai, and again at Bangkok airport.
Best plane entertainment
Scandal, without a doubt. I watched the pilot episode on a flight, then later got T hooked; we watched the whole first season and a third of the second throughout Rome and Athens. (Close second goes to The Newsroom; I can’t even remember which episode it was, but it doesn’t matter, because I am totally infatuated with Jim.)
Most overpriced meal
Caught out by the whole selling by weight thing, we spent basically $26 on stall food in Prague. There was a fair bit of roasted ham and a hearty potato dish, but most certainly not THAT much worth. Delicious, though.
Unforeseen, but oh-so-common annoyance
Electric tram/bus overhead lines. That shiz will ruin a good picture every time.
Biggest travel peeve
City tax. That is all.
Tags: reflections, travel
I never worried too much about potentially running into language barriers before we set out. Maybe I should have, but as it turns out, I didn’t really need to. English is truly universal, like it or not.
While I tried to memorise a few key words from my handy phrasebook in the Triposo app for each new country we entered, 99% of the time it was more of a nice-to-have rather than a need. Anyone in a frontline role serving customers in the countries we visited usually understood a LITTLE bit of English, and with gestures, we could usually bridge the gap if there was one. And of course, anytime you get a group of travellers that hails from different countries, they’ll all communicate in English. It’s a beautiful thing.
But when you DO run up against someone who speaks absolutely no English? It’s frustrating. Words are my currency, both at work and in, well, LIFE. So this past week, which I spent volunteering at an immersive conversational English language programme in Germany, was incredibly interesting. The students there had all decided that for whatever reason, they wanted to improve their fluency in order to get ahead in today’s world. Meeting these Germans for the first time, when they stuttered and paused and generally struggled to find the right words to express themselves, vs the end of the week when sentences flowed much more freely and they started to correct themselves mid-sentence as needed, was supremely rewarding. Language barriers, we slayed you good.
The Anglos on the course mainly consisted of retirees or teachers (which makes sense really, since they’re currently enjoying their summer holidays), though I thought there might be more young travellers like ourselves (and apparently the Spanish courses often skew younger). Most of them had taken part in the programme before, so I was a little apprehensive about how we might fare as newbies. Almost everything I know I gained through simply reading a heckuva lot. I don’t know the rules of grammar inside out. I don’t know what a proposition or a participle is. I work on instinct, honed by years of reading and writing. As it turned out, though, I didn’t need to know the WHYs, though it helped when I did.
It’s always funny when you throw a bunch of strangers together in close quarters, especially for something as intensive as this one-week course. After a few days, you get more comfortable around each other, but tensions also bubble to the surface, certain groups form, and personality clashes become evident. I hate to say it, but a lot of the Americans on the course (who made up the majority of the ‘Anglos’, or English-speaking volunteer teachers) were pretty stereotypically American. The kind who give the US a bad name. Some were lovely for the most part (as long as you avoided saying ANYTHING vaguely critical about the US) while others were of the brash, ‘do you have tea? is it fresh? oh, you don’t have iced tea? well, can I get a pot of tea and a glass of ice cubes so I can make my own iced tea rather than just GET SOMETHING THAT YOU ACTUALLY SERVE?‘ variety.
What really got our goat was how arrogant they could be. For example, one told T that she found him difficult to understand because he “says things wrong”. Certain words and expressions vary in different parts of the world, right? That’s different, not wrong. Americans say purse, those in the UK and down under say handbag. Vacation versus holiday. Gas vs petrol. The list goes on and on. And if we must quibble, then let’s not forget that American English stems from, er, British English. The programme is meant to attract openminded types, but I think we were a tad lacking in diversity within the American contingent in this case.
That aside, it was one of the best experiences of our trip – and maybe even of my life. I’m already scheming to return to Europe to try out the Spanish version of the programme, and maybe visit some of the people we met this week.
Tags: reflections, travel
I’m not gonna lie. Sometimes T drives me around the bend, and vice versa.
Travelling with a partner is a double edged sword. Travelling alone means no compromising, but conversely, no one to share the experience with. Travelling with someone else flips that equation on its head – and sometimes that’s a real challenge.
Accept your different travel styles
Learn what they are and how to work with them. T always needs entertainment, especially on journeys. I zombie out, watch the scenery, and doze.
One of you will no doubt be the one who comments on everything that’s different from home, and who struggles to adapt. Try your best to shrug off that lens, accept the local customs, and understand how the culture might be shaped by historic, social, and economic forces.
Take turns being sick
Take turns tucking each other in, hogging the toilet, going out to pick up food or in search of Gatorade/Revive.
Take breaks from sightseeing. Find a routine of some sort. Sleep in. Watch the latest Game of Thrones or a cheesy old movie.
Most of all, make allowances. When you’re sweaty, sleep-deprived and starving, be kind to one another. Learn when to bite your tongue and when to be accommodating.
Got any more to add to the list?
Tags: reflections, travel