So, here I find myself at another crossroads in my life about to take a deep breath and step into the unknown. I`ve been told that I`m `brave`, but I don`t think that it`s courage that`s brought me here. More a sense of curiousity and adventure to see what else is out there. A real drive to experience new places and people, visit at first hand those places I`ve pored over in brochures and travel books. And finally a quest to fit in as much `living` before I might lose the urge or be unable to do all those things I want to do and go to all those places I`ve always wanted to visit.
Perhaps I inherited this `restless soul` from my mum, who sadly didn`t get to travel as much as she would have liked before she became ill. But she was always very adventurous and I`ll always treasure the fair bit of exploring we did together. So, maybe a part of me is doing this for her and I`m sure she would have approved even though she`d be worried sick about me!
So with my bags (almost) packed – will I still be glad I packed those hair straighteners when I`m rafting down the Amazon?? Should I take boots AND flip flops??
My ticket is (almost) booked – will 4 weeks be enough time to see New Zealand and will I have enough money left to fit in China at the end?? Maybe they do actually have “slow boats” there but are they cheaper than Air Asia??
Family and friends have been (almost) bid a fond farewell – can`t really believe that I won`t be seeing most of them for over a year. Thanks to technology, and assuming I don`t get my laptop nicked in some dodgy hostel in Mexico, I hope to be able to keep in touch with everyone by this blog, e-mail and Skype (but hopefully not via the BBC News or the Foreign Office….).
So here goes my last few weeks in sunny London (it won`t last!) plus a mini tour of some the great cities of Europe – Liverpool and Edinburgh and Tenerife – visiting friends, sons and luxury hotels.
Next stop….San Francisco.