It’s been a long, hard winter, folks, but it’s almost over, right?
When asked about my favourite travel destination – or favourite book, or band, or meal, or anything, really – my response is simple: my favourite is the one I fell in love with last.
San Francisco may prove to be the exception.
Like most of my ill-fated romances, I fell in love almost immediately. Against my better judgment, the crazy microclimates, the sometimes vertically inclined streets, and the cold and noisy Victorian apartments charmed me.
In those few and altogether brief days, I couldn’t get enough of the views, the food, the people.
I have so much to be thankful for, I barely know where to begin. This past week has been extraordinary in so many ways, I am am so thankful for the people and opportunities which brought me here.
I was presented with the opportunity to go to California this month to mix a little work and pleasure. I knew I’d see lots of pretty sights, eat lots of great food, but I have to admit that for the first time, the people I met were the highlights of this trip.
I can honestly say the past 10 days have managed to break me and rebuild me in the most amazing way.
I am truly feeling blessed right now.
This a taste from my last night in San Francisco. They’re handheld images taken at 4am after a perfect storm of great food, drink and company so they’re about as clear as my head was at the time!
If it appears that I’ve gone into hibernation, it wouldn’t be too far off the mark. Between work and school, it’s been a crazy couple of months, and it’s only going to get crazier when I start my new job on Monday. I’m thrilled about the position and my new(ish) colleagues are wonderful, so it’s great news all around.
Hopefully, I’ll be able to squeeze a weekend or two to myself to do more than photograph the surprise blooms in my garden.
Happy spring, everyone!
To say I have no love for winter would be an understatement. In fact, it’s only through my abhorrence for the freezing cold which has made me appreciate the sweltering humidity of Ontario summers.
But, dear internet, after my weekend in a snow-bound cottage, my tune has changed. I loathe at least 20% less.
It was a crazy couple of days of snowmobiling (oh yes, I did!) and igloo-building (oh yes, I watched!), and warming up by a roaring fire with a mug of hot buttered rum. I have to admit that I had way, way more fun than I thought and would gladly go again should the opportunity present itself.
When our lovely hosts took us 3km into the trails around the property, we all marveled at the untouched beauty and the complete silence of the woods. We were truly in nature’s cathedral, and it was awesome in the fullest sense of the world.
Don’t worry, I haven’t entirely lost my marbles. I still violently detest winters in the city, with the slush and the wind and the shoveling and the crap roads. But at least I’ll remember that it can be beautiful, too.
This time around, we were prepared for Cuba. And as it turned out, aside from the Benadryl, none of it was necessary. The resort was lovely, the food was better than expected, and we had a great time.
I returned to Havana for a third visit, and went with a tour company rather than hiring a cab since I was on my own. While I learned quite a bit from the guide, and met some great people, I found the experience very rushed and would definitely not go that route again.
Below are a couple of my favourite images from this trip, and if you visit my Cuba gallery, you can see all the things that made me smile from both last year and this year.
I’m back from a sunny week in Cuba. The memory cards have been backed up, many loads of laundry have been done, and I’m almost ready to return to reality.
More photos to come within a week – there will be no more posting trip photos a year later in 2013!
Meanwhile, please visit the Cuba Gallery
Visit the Cuba Gallery
We’ve had barely two weeks of actual winter so far, but it’s -26C today with the windchill and I’m feeling particularly whiny.
Right now I’m dreaming of being uncomfortably hot and sweaty in a teeming foreign capital just to keep warm! And since that day dream is only going to get me so far, I’ve booked a trip back to Cuba and leave in a few days.
I had such plans for my 18 days of Christmas vacation, but with two thirds done, I can say that I’ve only scratched the surface of what I’d hoped to do.
What needed to be done, such as rest, relaxation (and a lovely knee injury), and time with family and friends, has been accomplished with ease. If that’s all I accomplish, I’ll still be one happy woman!
Thank you to every amazing person who has supported me throughout this past year. You made 2012 so wonderful, and I wish you the very best for 2013.