Do you want to know what I think the best part about finishing Uni and getting a job was – finally having $$$. Not just that but also having time. Sure, I have to work during the day but once that clock hits 5pm I walk away and don’t think about work until I sit down at my desk again the next day.
For me, that time and money means holidays! Not just a weekend you get every now and then between assignment due dates in Uni, or the mid semester break that’s over before it even starts. I am talking about a pack your bags, we are off to see the world, who knows when we will be back kind of holiday.
For 18months I worked and saved, all building up to the dream holiday – several months backpacking around Europe. This was always my motivation for graduating, knowing I would finally have the time I needed to see the world. I set off in July, starting with a Contiki camping tour to get myself orientated before venturing off on my own to explore.
I had the most incredible time abroad, meeting weird and wonderful people and making memories to last a lifetime. I’ve see the Eiffel Tower,
the Colosseum and the Leaning Tower of Pisa.
I went parasailing and scuba diving in the Greek Islands,
climbed to the highest peak in Europe in the Swiss Alps,
danced on tabletops in Spain (sangria in hand), explored castles and ruins in Slovakia and partied in underground bunkers. I have eaten copious amounts of pizza, pasta, pastries and gelato, played with the high rollers at Monte Carlo Cassino, saw Tom Cruise repelling from a rooftop in Vienna filming a movie, and so much more!
It has been an incredible and life changing experience that challenged me every step of the way. I have battled freezing cold nights and scorching hot days, not to mention the wind and rain while trying to set my tent up, sometimes in the pitch dark. I have dealt with ice cold showers at 5am and many a sleepless night in hostels. Travelling alone in foreign places where no one speaks English can be daunting but I am proud to say I did it and I survived.
After 32 days spent sleeping in a tent and countless more on uncomfortable couches or questionable hostel beds I am finally home. Sick and tired at first (anyone who has ever been on a Contiki will know about the dreaded Contiki cough) and very broke, but also with a strong case of the travel bug. Now to plan my next adventure…