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Category: Travel

I travel the world and see words.

Malta & Gozo (AtSkool)

Malta & Gozo (AtSkool)

Eilandparadijzen Malta en Gozo: sprookjesachtig relaxed

Malta is een piepklein eilandje rechts van Tunesië, onder Italië, midden in de Middellandse Zee. Vanuit het vliegtuig zie je nog tot kort voor de landing de gehele buitenrand van het eiland! Superoud is het eiland – er zijn bouwwerken te vinden die zo ver terug de geschiedenis ingaan als tussen 3500 en 2500 voor Christus. Deze bouwwerken zijn ouder dan Stonehenge, ouder dan de Egyptische piramiden. Het landje is al zo ongeveer vijftienduizend keer binnengevallen door allerlei bevolkingsgroepen, waardoor er een interessante mix van culturen is ontstaan. Malta voelt tegelijkertijd Italiaans en Arabisch aan, en mensen spreken er een taal (Maltees) met veel x-en die nog het beste valt te omschrijven als Dothraki. Het Maltees is de enige van Arabisch afgeleide taal die je in een Latijns schrift schrijft. Ook handig om te weten bij het oversteken: op het eiland, een oude Britse kolonie, rijden de mensen links. 

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Two (emotivehome)

Two (emotivehome)

I just realised that I’ve been focusing on the concept of ‘feeling at home’ for quite some time now. It started with an essay about The Help, in which I wrote about emotive homes and physical homes, terms I made up but seemed to resonate with my life. Living in Bath I didn’t feel like I’d closed off my Dutch life. I was half living in one world, half in the other. I had more than one home.

And it felt difficult to combine them, in my mind. This is because the notion of ‘home’ doesn’t just come with a house, it comes with certain obligations, habits, memories and a group of friends that needs nurturing and love. It is something I love doing; taking care of friends, discussing our lives and listening to their troubles, hopes and fears. 

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This Is The Life, part one

This Is The Life, part one

A brief encounter with the Aussie life, camp site style:

Saturday 2 Jan – We arrive in Cairns and my first instinct is that everything is off. Well, not off, but uncomfortable. It’s hot and clammy and everything is new. After an easygoing family week in Bateman’s Bay, the upcoming camping life seems daunting. Cairns actually looks like Jurassic World. Like raptors could dash out of the bushes at any second.
My brother and I find our campervan and he drives it to our airbnb for the first night – I was too nervous. Driving on the left, man! The house is in a quiet street, there’s no one home. We duck under lushious plant life and find there’s a guy living in the apartment. It’s uncomfortable. He doesn’t seem to realize we are coming. I treat the place like a student accommodation.
After lunch we meet with Bec, and it’s so fun to see her in her natural habitat! I understand now, why she always thought it so cold during our UK year. We see fancy and less fancy beaches and of course they are all like post cards. Palm trees, bright colours and nets against jellyfish.

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TIPS FOR 20SOME’S: CREATE A WORK EXPERIENCE (TwentySomeTraveller)

TIPS FOR 20SOME’S: CREATE A WORK EXPERIENCE (TwentySomeTraveller)

So, while you’re busy not knowing what to do with your life, try doing that some place else. It might offer some perspective.

Last March (2013) I went to Los Angeles for a month. I had just graduated, it was a super cold winter and I wanted to experience a new (and warmer) environment. Also, I craved to see whether all stereotypes concerning L.A. were true..

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World Wide Opportunities On Hippie Farms (SoftSandyBeaches)

World Wide Opportunities On Hippie Farms (SoftSandyBeaches)

Vorige zomer kwam een vriendin met de mededeling dat ze ging ‘Woefen’ in Zweden, een ervaring die mij vooral bizar leek. Woefen? Wat? Het bleek te gaan om Wwoof, World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms. Vanwege mijn enthousiasme kwam ik hier pas een maandje geleden achter. Vorige zomer vond ik haar idee vooral vaag.

“Wat ga je dan doen?” vroeg ik.

“Gewoon, bij mensen in de tuin werken,” zei ze.

Het klonk intiem. Ik snapte niet zo goed waarom een gezin zomaar iemand zou laten invliegen vanuit Nederland om bij hen ‘in de tuin’ te werken.

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Een lesje Wwoof-lifestyle (SoftSandyBeaches)

Een lesje Wwoof-lifestyle (SoftSandyBeaches)

Dit is het nare van reizen: de maand nadat je terug bent gekomen sijpelen de herinneringen langzaam weg uit je hoofd. Je weet het nog wel, die fijne middagen in de hangmat en de vele pastei de nata’s die je at, maar echt tastbaar is het niet meer.

Het was gewoon echt een totaal andere wereld. Het spookt door mijn hoofd terwijl ik door mijn Portugal fotomap blader. Het was er een wereld van stilte en van liefde, van verse sinaasappels plukken uit de boom en van buiten douchen in je nakie. Mijn Wwoof ervaring.

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Capetown Conversations (TwentySomeTraveller)

Capetown Conversations (TwentySomeTraveller)

Floating high above my holiday wish list is Cape Town, South Africa. This has grown more urgent in the past few years due to an increasing amount of friends on Facebook visiting the city, for travel but also for living and working there. I saw the pictures, read the amazing stories and felt like this city built itself up almost unrealistically in my mind. The nature, the food, the sun, the sea, the fun language and the immense diversity of culture and people. I’ve been trying to go, to find a way to go, each year for a couple of years now but it always fails.

Whenever I talked to my boyfriend about this matter, he would flinch and call Cape Town the city “where most tourists are murdered”. I am too naïve to believe this sort of talk and frankly, I don’t want to be scared to go anywhere – cause anything can happen at any time and I don’t want to feel like I have to live in fear somewhere. Lots of girls my age went to and returned from Cape Town. Last week I had a conversation about this with a friend of mine who spent a few months in the city, as I shared my idea of working on an organic farm there (Wwoof – more about this later). Her face changed a little and she replied she didn’t quite know if that would be a good idea.

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Ijsland in januari (Orange Stars)

Ijsland in januari (Orange Stars)

IJsland in januari:
Winterse taferelen onder het Noorderlicht

Weggestopt in het uiterst noordelijke hoekje van Europa, lijkt IJsland nou niet dé vakantiebestemming bij uitstek. Het land van de folklore, gletsjers en walvissen trekt echter steeds meer bezoekers. Hieronder volgen een aantal tips voor een winters tripje.

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Judgement

Judgement

As I’ll be leaving this country tomorrow, there ought to be some kind of conclusion. The United States of America. Los Angeles. Hollywood. The conclusion must be that it is too easy to judge.

Is Hollywood glitz & glam & famous actors everywhere? I am afraid not. There might be actors running around but they’re hidden safely behind their car windows and although I saw one, that was random ‘good luck’. I know the ‘actors are people’ thing is annoying, but really, there’s nothing that exciting about seeing another human being, especially one you don’t know personally. So Hollywood boulevard then? I’ve learned that it is a place full of superheroes and villains (from Captain America to Bane), crazy people, tourists that crave fame and use it as their personal runway, the odd Angry Bird and a lot of youngsters on skateboards.

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Sunburnt

Sunburnt

And then suddenly, 4 days to go. Friday, Saturday, Sunday, Monday. It feels weird and a bit sad but also super exciting to go home!

Yesterday at around four I came back from a family vacation – with Blayke’s family, that is – to Yuma, where we stayed from Monday to Wednesday. There was just the big open desert, the Quechan reservation and the casino resort full of old people (or those that stayed too long in the pool), but it was so much fun to me. We even did an easter egg hunt around the pool, looking for eggs that had your name on it, and that felt so much like my own easter family vacation (that is happening this weekend, at home, not envying them in this weather).

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