We’re just back from three wonderful days in London, complete with blogger meet-up, on top of helping to host a Christmas party today, so you’ll have to excuse my lack of creativity. There are photos to upload and words to type, but for tonight, this pre-structured post caught my eye on a couple other travel blogs.
Age you went on your first international trip: 6 weeks. I was born in the US, then moved to England for the next 4 years. So when I say I’ve been traveling my whole life, I really do mean it.
Best foreign beer you’ve had and where: Hmm, not sure about this one, since while I do drink the occasional beer, I’m not much of a connoisseur.
Cuisine (favorite): For sheer repeatability, I have to go with Italian.
Destinations – favorite, least favorite and why: I don’t have a favorite! Although I do tell everyone to go to Croatia because I loved it and can imagine it totally overrun by crowds in the not-so-distant future. Least favorite is Lima, although I’d be willing to give it another chance mostly just to eat yummy Peruvian food. I spent a day there on my return to Santiago from Machu Picchu, and nothing about it particularly excited me.
Event you experienced abroad that made you say wow: Hiking to Torres del Paine counts as an event in my book, and it was definitely wow-worthy thanks to great weather.
Favorite mode of transportation: First or business, please. But with all the hassle surrounding air travel, I might just have to vote for the train. Our trips to and from London were hassle free, relatively cheap and faster than driving. Plus I’m pretty sure sleeping and reading are frowned upon when you’re behind the wheel, but they’re encouraged on the rails.
Greatest feeling while traveling: That feeling when you first arrive of having your head on a swivel and trying to take in as much as possible as fast as possible to get an idea of a place.
Hottest place you’ve traveled to: Philadelphia in August probably felt the hottest. I thought the humidity really would kill me. I’m a West Coast girl through and through.
Incredible service you’ve experienced and where: It’s a tie between the Bucuti in Aruba for our honeymoon and the Kahala on Oahu for our anniversary. I think the Kahala gets the edge on general service, and they handled the tsunami incredibly well, but it’s hard not to love the staff at the Bucuti who saved me a chocolate doughnut every morning after I asked for one on the first day.
Journey that took the longest: The trip between Santiago and San Francisco is usually around 15 hours, but an additional 14 hours spent in DFW made last July’s San Francisco to Santiago trip my longest yet.
Keepsake from your travels: Rodolfo and I decided in Buenos Aires in May to start a new tradition of buying Christmas ornaments on our travels. So far we’ve got our Argentine souvenir and a sweet penguin we picked up in London on Thursday.
Let-down site – why and where: Stonehenge is really not worth it, guys. Save yourself the trip out to the middle of nowhere.
Moment when you fell in love with travel: Please see letter A. I can’t remember a time I haven’t traveled or a time I haven’t enjoyed it.
Nicest hotel you’ve stayed in: The Ritz-Carlton in Battery Park, NYC is a hard one to beat for old-school luxury, although I really do think the Kahala is pretty damn nice.
Obsession – what are you obsessed with taking pictures of while traveling: Lately, it’s definitely been food.
Passport stamps, how many and from where: Ok, I’m really not going to go count passport stamps, mostly because I’m too lazy but also because Chile stamps all entries and exits, so I’ve probably got at least 30 from Chile alone. My current favorite passport stamp is from Aruba, because it’s pretty, and if you’re looking for a list of countries I’ve been to, that would be the following 22: US, Canada, Mexico, Guatemala, Aruba, Chile, Peru, Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil, England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales (yup, counting those two as countries, hush), Portugal, Spain, France, Italy, Vatican City, Croatia, Greece, Sweden.
Quirkiest attraction you’ve visited and where: Do I do quirky? Maybe I do, and it just seems normal to me. Nothing’s coming to mind, but that could be poor memory rather than lack of quirk.
Recommended site, event or experience: One painfully long bus journey. My 24 hours up to the Atacama desert aren’t something I want to repeat in a hurry, but the trip felt like a rite of passage.
Splurge, something you have no problem forking over money for while traveling: Well business class, as I have now said enough times to probably brand myself a total snob. The occasional great meal.
Touristy thing you’ve done: The hop-on/hop-off bus we took on our last trip to London was insanely touristy and not our usual style, but it was great! Touristy sites are often touristy for a reason – because they’re awesome, and a lot of people want to go to them. Occasionally it’s good to forget the too cool for school attitude and follow the crowds.
Unforgettable travel memory: Hitch-hiking in the Andes and sharing a ride with a life-changing stranger.
Visas: Three Chilean visas – one student and two “subject to contract” – and that’s it! The British passport means that I didn’t have to get a visa to go to Brazil.
Wine, best glass while traveling and where: Lapostolle Clos Apalta 2009. Drink it. Die happy. The end.
eXcellent view and from where: Seeing the Parthenon lit up at night from an apartment that was about 5 feet away (ok, slight exaggeration). Gorgeous, unexpected as our hosts hadn’t told us about the view that awaited us, and my first real-life taste of everything I’d learned about as a classical civilizations minor.
Years spent traveling: All 26!
Zealous sports fans and where: I was in Rome when Italy won the World Cup in 2006. No contest.