This week is the start to a new semester. Summer Semester ended quicker than it began with last week’s exams and I’m ready for a fresh start.
I spent quite a bit of time in August adjusting to a few ideas:
First, “Holy Cow, I got into veterinary school!” Big adjustment.
Then, “Holy Cow, I got into veterinary school in Scotland!” Bigger adjustment.
Then, “Holy Bovine, Batman! I’m living in Scotland!” Mind.blown.
Finally, just as the whole “I got into veterinary school….in Scotland…living here now…” concept was sinking in, I thought, “Holy £*%$! exams are here!” ha.ha.ha.ha.
After finishing my exams, I needed some time to recenter. I briefly considered getting into Bikram yoga again, but, when I remembered how much it sucked to pay a ton of money to do 90 minutes of difficult yoga in a very hot room, I decided to pack a backpack and head off to Ireland for the weekend instead. *
*Editor’s note: Please don’t confuse this with the idea of “backpacking” around Ireland. I packed a Jansport bookbag, two dresses, leggings and faux suede boots lined with faux lambskin and walked around. I carried sparkling water with me. It was not a backpacking trip.
In response to this impulsive getaway, I received quite a bit of envy mail and “wish I could join you” messages. Understandable. I stayed in an old Victorian house on the beach and a posh hotel in Dublin. I drank Guinness and whiskey and wine (all in the same night). I listened to great music in the pubs and on the streets and I freely explored the countryside. To top it all off, I shamelessly posted stuff like this on Facebook, which pretty much invited people to be jealous:
However, a few people went as far to say they’d love to pack up and travel the world with me. To those people, I say, you are wrong. You do not want to pack up and travel the world with me. When it comes to traveling, there’s a reason I usually go it alone. Rather, there’s about five reasons:
1. I pack light. Really light. So light, in fact that I forgot to bring underwear and toothpaste. This did not bother me. I went commando, brushed my teeth with water and ate a lot of breath mints….a lot of breath mints. Most people would be disgusted by this. Did not bother me a bit.
2. In reference to packing light, I only brought one change of clothes. Ireland was a lot warmer than I expected and I got very sweaty, especially when I decided that I had to climb to the top of Bray Head if I was going to feel fulfilled in my journey. My solution to my body odor problem was washing one of my dresses in the hotel sink with a bar of soap. As you can imagine, it didn’t help much. I decided it was time to reconsider my all natural deodorant and purchase something a little more heavy duty. Of course, I didn’t go deodorant shopping until after I got back to Scotland. Anyone still want to travel with me? Keep reading.
3. I don’t like to plan things. I didn’t know where I was staying Saturday night until about 2 p.m. Saturday afternoon. This concept seems unnerving for most people. Personally, following an itinerary stresses me out more. The beauty of my trip was being able to walk around a park in a small town I had never heard of before and take a nap under a tree when I got tired of walking. Not everyone can happily travel like a hobo.
4. Not knowing where I am doesn’t bother me. When I left the airport, I hopped on a yellow bus that I assumed was going to the city. I was lucky. I then rode the bus until I was in the city center. I got off the bus at an unremarkable stop. I walked around aimlessly, stumbling through St. Stephen’s Green, a few Fresher’s events at the university, a Viking museum, Christchurch Cathedral and the castle before I fortunately found myself at the train station I needed to be at to get to Bray. This entire time, I wandered without a map, wifi or the slightest clue as to where I was.
5. Finally, I don’t have as big of a sense of adventure as most people assume. Sure, I may pack up and go explore foreign countries by myself, but when presented with real adventure, I usually back down. On my trip, I met an older gentleman (late 50’s) who bought me a glass of wine and kept me company for a few hours. He told me he had a small plane and offered me a ride around the island. How awesome would aerial shots of Ireland have made this blog post!? A real adventurer would have taken him up on it. He wasn’t creepy or in anyway unpleasant. Still, I turned down his offer because I know that those tiny planes can be dangerous. I also don’t know how to fly them. Truthfully, it wasn’t that I didn’t know his last name or life story keeping me from flying with him, it was not knowing his cholesterol level, medical history or aptitude. If he had a heart attack in mid-air, it would be a quick and tragic descent to the ground for me. I politely declined.
Anyone want to take a trip with me? Fair warning, I hog all the blankets, simultaneously kick and cuddle in my sleep, and never blow dry my hair, so I have no patience for someone who likes to do that stuff before they go out.