I’ve been pondering what my first blog post should be about for weeks now. I’ve started a few which I hope will one day make it onto the blog but none of them felt right to be my first post.
As usual my inspiration came from my wife. Joanne has been blogging for a while now and recently posted a great pictorial blog about her passport which she will soon have to renew in her wedded name. She wanted to commemorate all the places she has been to with that passport and it turned out great. (Click here to read!)
Presenting who I am and where I’ve been so far feels like the perfect way to start.
I’m on my third passport now and I didn’t want to leave anything out as some of my earliest travels have had the biggest effects on me. I’m also very conscious that I have a habit of waffling on and writing essays so a more pictorially focused post will hopefully be more exciting and considerably shorter.
My early life was dominated by holidays with my parents that consisted of visiting family, the best for me were always when we went to Wales. I’ve always loved the outdoors and Wales seem to hold so much myth and legend. To this day one of my favourite places is Conwy Castle.
We didn’t travel abroad for holidays so my adventures came in the form of stories or leafing through our atlas to learn about the world. My Mother doesn’t fly so other than a School trip to the French & Belgium battle fields when I was sixteen I had zero experience of travelling abroad.
This all changed when I was 17.
I was lucky enough to be accepted onto a Rotary Exchange Program to Brazil.
I was a shy 17-year-old who had never been on a plane, never lived alone, I had no foreign language skills, no travelling experience, but I got on a plane and flew across the world to live with a family I had never met.
On my return from Brazil I studied in the beautiful and vibrant walled Town of York for my degree before once again moving abroad. At the end of my time at University I was given the opportunity to live & work in China for a year. I returned to China for three weeks in 2014 and I look forward to writing about my experiences and how things have changed in that time.
Before returning home from China I decided to do a bit of travelling around South East Asia. The plan was to fly to Singapore and then make my way overland back to Beijing. I didn’t realise how ambitious this was at the time as having been living in China I didn’t have access to travel guides or even the internet. This is probably what led to some of my craziest adventures. In effect, I jumped into it blind. I walked out of the airport armed only with the knowledge I had gained from an inflight magazine. I’d read about the area where the hostels would be so I headed there, within a few hours I’d made friends with the other travellers in my dorm room and we travelled together as far as central Thailand before going our separate ways.
As with most people, after my backpacking experience the real world grabbed me and forced me into a full-time job. Don’t get me wrong I’ve still done plenty of travelling since. Except for a month in America and my recent month long honeymoon to Australia, my trips have been limited to 3 weeks.
This is when my love of mini adventures was borne. It started with small trips to Europe for specific events like the San Fermin Festival, in Pamplona, Spain, better known as the Bull Run. In-fact, I brought back so many crazy stories another group of friends convinced me to do it a second time with them.
There was a trip to Italy to visit the ruins of Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius.
I shared a truly adventurous Road trip across California with a close friend, complete with Convertible Red Mustang.
I won’t go into all the great little trips and adventures I went on in the UK but suffice to say some great times were had. The big adventures and exotic foreign adventures came when I met the amazing woman that is now my wife. She has the bug as well although I’m sure I helped her to awaken it. I’m not going to write much more here, rather I’m going to show you some of my favourite photos from our travels with the odd note or two. I hope you enjoy them and I plan to write more on our trips when I have time.
As with all you Travellers out there I have my fair share of funny stories, enlightening experiences and crazy adventures, I hope to share as much of these as possible with you and hopefully I will inspire someone to go out into the World and explore.