It’s “Teaser Tuesday” today but I’m still going strong on Lost Luggage, so no new post for that one this week. Loving the book, it’s just been a very busy week so hadn’t finished it like I had hoped.
So anyhooo… it’s 25 sleeps to Europe! Whoop whoop I’m getting excited. I can’t wait to see Dublin again, after 10 years. It will be so different. I’ve got to cram in seeing as many people as I can in about 48 hours! Plus get the DART out to Killiney Bay so I can see “grey suede”. And go to Kilmainham Jail (never visited in all the time I lived there…) and have a cider … and walk along the Liffey… and take in all the changes. AND AND AND.
THEN off to France with so much to do and see, on to Spain briefly and finally Italy before coming home. So I have to get trip-fit. The trip both excites and scares the shite out of me! There’ll be lots of walking and lots of stairs (Europe isn’t very disabled friendly). I have some inside information from my last time over there. I’m going to some new places I know nothing about (except that Cerbere is hilly, Bordeaux not so, Strasbourg just sounds gorgeous full stop). However the biggies, Dublin, Paris, Barcelona and Rome, I have visited. These are places you can go back to again and again and still feel like it’s a new place. I won’t do all the sights this time, but I WILL go up the lift at Sagrada Familia (providing it’s working) and at Arc de Triomphe (both places I couldn’t do that at last time for various reasons). I also have some unfinished business with those Spanish Steps in Roma.
Back to that trip-fit thing. I’ve got four weeks to be fit enough to pull on my swim suit (it’s winter here, remember???) and to walk for miles and tackle things like hills and stairs (difficult for me). I’ve had 2 good days of eating well and I’ve started doing my little workout that my personal trainer brother (Martin, the marathon runner in Bordeaux Aussie Personal Trainer online! ) put together for me and I’ve been trying to get a good 20-30 minutes walking in every day. Not easy in winter, though we’ve been blessed with some mild days this last week. And I have my yoga.
I balance it out, however, with this…. yes that’s an empty glass. A red with dinner. Training for France (Bordeaux in particular!). I also have a very sweet tooth. Chocolate and ice cream are my bestest friends and my worstest enemies. I do love my veges though and I do cook well… it’s the snacks that are my downfall. If anyone out there has any advice on how to eat an apple and believe the pscychology that it is all you need, and not that chocolate sante bar afterwards… then please please send me your words of wisdom! It is all about balance, however. Not deprivation! And I’ve always maintained I’d rather die happy and a little chubby than skinny and miserable.
You see, I’m not supposed to be on this earth. I’ve lived 40 years longer than the doctors said I would. So every day is a bonus to me. This trip is a bonus to me! I’ve been reading about all the European travel tragedies of late (trains, buses…). Not great reading when you’re about to depart and travel by train yourself… but then, it’s no point living scared. You could die any day. I’ve lived my entire life with that knowledge being very real. I went back to Europe after collapsing in Rome to prove to myself I could do it again. I think that frame of mind got me through the earthquakes in 2010 and 2011.
I’m trying to work out what (if any) of my yoga gear will fit in my bag… I reckon a stretch or two might pay dividends to sore muscles after days of walking. I expect to return to NZ somewhat lighter simply because for me, although there’ll be Cheese and Wine and Pastries, I’ll have moved my body more than I have in 10 years. Just in time for our spring/summer and those blasted togs will need to resurface!
Watch this space!