Sunday, 22 January 2017

Seeing it without the rose tint.

My desire to travel only grows with every adventure I take. If I had never travelled to Thailand, I would have never grasped the ability to believe in possibility. Travel is surprising, charming and utterly irreplaceable.

When we drew up our wedding plans three years ago, I was asked the question: Where do you want to go on honeymoon? Well, I replied simply with: somewhere tropical. And that was it… Fiji was chosen.
We saved hard and got hitched in the May of 2014 – when we left England to embark on our honeymoon I truly didn’t know what to expect.

Fiji, was every part perfect. Sun drenched, tropical and so beautiful. We stayed at a luxury resort, which was well maintained. I couldn’t pick fault at our stay there - 7 nights of bliss. True romantic, honeymoon style, bliss.

But, the journey back to the airport – left an unanswered question. As we passed through the outskirts of town, I was absolutely blown away by the hustle and bustle of the streets, the open-door ways and small town restaurants, the locals going about their normal lives, a glimpse at the most enlightening temple. I had spent seven lovely nights dining at my hotel – if only I had dared to explore…

What I realised that there was SO much more out there. Take away the bliss, there is far greater stories out there. Real people, real heartache, real love, real culture.
It’s hard to describe exactly what I see in a destination, but I can’t help but dream of seeing the world without the rose-tinted glasses, without the luxuries we are so quick to choose (myself included).

From then on in, nothing phased me.
I remember stepping foot into the old souks in Marrakesh, surrounded by swarms of people. Every part of Vietnam was a different page of a book, one moment stuck between traffic in Hanoi to buying local fruit from a street seller.

What I’ve learnt is that my desire to travel is far greater than anything else. To meet people, to eat incredible food and to learn more about the world. 


Sunday, 1 January 2017

2017… I can & I will.

New Year is always a difficult one to nail. This is the first year in almost a decade, I’ve not woken with insecurities and a desire to starve myself for the duration of January. It’s also a stark contrast to this time last year – when we were in the process of completing on a house sale. Life was so uncertain, scary and a little bit intimidating.

Beautiful Langkawi
2016 – was a tough old ride. I ran a marathon and went through hell and back to get to the finish line, but something deep inside of me kept me going for the four hours I was out on the road all alone.
We went back and forth with solicitors, but we finally completed on our house and moved to a new home in late April. Settling in took time, and renovations consumed a lot of energy during the autumn months, but we got there in the end.
Work was a massive leap into the unknown, I found myself suddenly embraced in a world I absolutely loved. I stepped foot into kitchen after kitchen, and met some pretty incredible chefs along the way. I was in absolute awe. It’s safe to say my love for fresh produce only grew.
I quit obsessing over my weight – and instead turned my energy into my writing, travel, food and photography.
2016 wasn’t perfect, far from it. But, what came out of it was a feeling of relief, that I got there in the end. I got to the finish line of the London Marathon, I got back to Asia - the place I love most in the whole world, I got to a point where I didn’t worry every single day about my appearance or appetite.
Small steps were made, and I began realising that maybe, just maybe this ride was a little bit more tangible.
That’s not to say my dreams ever dwindled. My experiences and inspiration grew, as did the hunger and passion which still ignites every time I sit down and write.
2017 – I can & I will.
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