Amazing Light in London

Sometimes we are just in the right place at the right time. 4.30pm on Monday 10th December was one of those days.

 

 

I got these incredible shots on London’s Tower Bridge over the Thames River. Just stunning.

 

And it was just a little snappy camera!!

 

Sometimes cloud cover and dim light produces fab images!

 

 

 

Loving London

 

Tower of London

Nudie Run around the WORLD

I am not going to be naked!!!

But I will be travelling with my new pal, Nudie Plushie.

We will be travellign around the world together. India, UK, USA!!!

Nudie and I will be getting up to some crazy adventures and I am super excited to finally have a travel buddy!!

 

We’ve left our message with Santa and now we’re ready to get on the road!!!

 

 

 

Like what you read?

Read more on Explorer Girls – http://www.explorergirls.com

 

 

Check out Nudie.com.au for more Goodisms and add them on Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/nudiejuice

Travelling with Nudie – http://www.explorergirls.com/node/5581

Top 5 Countries I miss the MOST

There is a time for travel, and there is a time to work . The time now is work time.

Don’t get me wrong! I love living in Sydney and being here with friends and family and exploring my city. But there are also some countries that are in my heart that I miss terribly throughout the year and CANNOT WAIT to get back to.

1. INDIA

India has not just been a place I have visited. It is  a country that now rests in my heart. I can honestly say I think about it every day and I’m just so excited that I get to go back again in December this year. To taste the curries, to party in Goa and to laugh again with the wonderul, warm and kind people of the country.

Sunset in Goa

2. MEXICO

Mexico, tu eres en mi corazon. This is very wrong. haha This in literal translation says Mexico you are in my heart, but they don’t say it like that. Mexico is fun, vibrant, interesting, complicated and diverse. It’s rich in culture and extremly proud of it’s heritage. The people are fantastic and I really felt at home when I lived there. Quiero ir a Mexico pronto. I want to visit Mexico soon.

3. ENGLAND

England will always be my second home as my family lives there. I feel a strog sense of self when there and can really relate to the country. I love the history of the country as it is so much older than my baby country Australia. Whenever I hear a pommy accent, my heart instantly melts and I become nostalgic and longing. Ello ello ello!

4. GERMANY

Ich liebe Deutschland. I visited Germany in 2006 for the first time and subsequently reuturned twice more in the one year. I was lucky to have good friends spread out in many cities in Germany but I really found the people I met there to be so friendly. The food is amazing and I crave it constantly. It’s carb heaven! Prestzels, Knudle, Liebkuchen, Stollen, Magenbrot, Weiss wurst and the best breads you have ever tasted. Oh and of course, BEER!

5. USA

I know this may seem like a funny one to add as some people think that the USA is a lot like Australia, but they couldn’t be more wrong. Our cultures are completely different, as are the histories, the diversity of people and the food. I must admit, I don’t miss the kilos that I piled on there whilst eating the junk food. But I do miss the interesting and surprising places that I visited. USA is HUGE and there is so much more I need to see! Also, one of my favourite people in the world, my Cuz Bill lives there!

So my Top 5. I hope to get back to all of them this year.. but we have to wait and see!

Thom and Sean Travel the GLOBE

This week is an exciting DOUBLE DOSE with the travelling duo – Thom and Sean from the UK.

I met Thom and Sean via their great posts on Twitter and by xploring their awesome blog, http://www.thomandsean.com. These two certianly know how to write. I can’t wait to follow the guys as they travel around the world and eventually arrive in Australia to party with me!

Here Thom and Sean reflect on their home country, England and share the best with you.

1.      Name

Thom and Sean

2.      Occupation

Theatre technician (T) and photographer (S)

3.      Country of Residence

Currently the United Kingdom

4.      Country of Origin

United Kingdom

5. Website

http://www.thomandsean.com

6.      Why do you love Travel?

I think for us it’s the opportunity to meet new people and experience new things, trying out the world and seeing what else it has to offer.

7.      Favourite place in your home country and why?

Sean: I think the favourite place that we both share is Brighton.  It’s a seaside town (technically a city) on the south coast of England and it is brilliant.  It has gorgeous Georgian architecture, friendly people, lovely little shops and vintage interestingness and then there’s the beach.  Although not a sandy beach but a pebble beach it’s still fantastic.

Thom: Definitely agree with Brighton, it’s a damn lovely city. I’d probably throw in Chester too. It’s where I went to university so holds lots and lots of good memories for me. The town itself is quite small and easy to get around but holds loads of interesting shops, pubs and restaurants within the (Roman) city walls.

8.      Best place for tourists to visit in your country?

If you accept that London is a given for every tourist, which it should be because it has so much to offer, then we would recommend WHERE????

Thom: I guess it depends on the tourist! The UK has got so much to offer and can cater to pretty much any taste! If you like the countryside and fancy yourself a bit of a rambler then head up to the Lake District and Northumberland or down to Cornwall and Devon. Both areas host stunning natural beauty spots and the very best of the English countryside!

If you’re a history buff, your in luck – we’ve got shedloads of it. From Tudor houses Roman ruins you could pick pretty much any town or city and have something to look at. For me, Edinburgh would be the pick of the bunch simply for the castle alone.

If you like you nightlife and consider yourself very much a city-based tourist, then it really does have to be London. Huge, sprawling and crowded it may be but you could spend weeks here without running out of things to do!

Sean: I think I would recommend London, you can’t avoid it, but once you have I’d pick somewhere like Bath, Bristol or Manchester. London gets a lot of stick from the rest of the UK for not being a true example of British life. So, mix it up and visit somewhere outside the south east of England.

9.      What other country would you live in if you had to leave your country?

Thom: Difficult one to answer this. I’d probably go for Australia. Good climate, good beer and good people. What more could you need?!

Sean: The United States. The older I get the more I appreciate the liberty and freedom of the USA. Also, I like the eccentricity. I know I’ll love Australia but I don’t know if I can live that far away from everything else that I know? Part of our year there is to find out if we can!

10.  Best travelling experience anecdote in your own country?

Sean: When me and my friends were 16 we went on a mini-holiday to Bristol where we were going out to celebrate a birthday (bear in mind the legal drinking age in the UK is 18). We walked through all of Bristol trying to find a guest house with vacancies and we finally found one that we named Toad Hall. There were statues, pictures and toys of frogs EVERYWHERE. The landlady was something out of a Hammer Horror Film who insisted: “NO MONEY, NO KEY, NO MONEY, NO KEY”.

Suffice it to say we told her we would go and get cash, at which point we legged it! We found a new hotel and 10 or more years later we still chant ‘NO MONEY, NO KEY!’

11.  Favourite activity when around your city?

Thom: Going down to the Greyhound Racing track in Wimbledon and putting on a few bets! Such a fun night out and very easy to pick up.

Sean: Photography. London is just absolutely amazing for photography, there is every conceivable kind of back drop or setting and I know that I’m really going to miss that flexibility and inspiration once we’ve left.

12.  Do you feel you know your country well, or is more exploring of your homeland needed?

Thom: I’d certainly like to do some more exploring as you can always learn something new about a place. Saying that, I think I know the country quite well. As a kid we couldn’t afford to go on family holidays abroad so I’ve been to many and varied places in the UK.

Sean: I definitely need to explore the UK some more, I’ve still not been to Northern Ireland (or the Republic) and the last time I was in Cornwall I was a baby. I think I’ve got a fairly good handle on my country though. The south is hard and stuck up and the north is soft and friendly. Luckily for me I like stuck up and I like friendly!

13.  Any warnings for travellers visiting in your country?

Thom: Um, not that I can think of. It’s a very safe place. Of course, city’s and towns have there dodgy areas, as they do anywhere, but nothing major springs to mind.

Sean: The UK is expensive, I think Japan is one of the only countries more expensive than the UK. You won’t get value for money I’m afraid. Visit now though because the £ is barely worth the paper it’s printed on so it won’t seem so bad!

14.  Must see movie featuring your country and Why?

Thom: Withnail and I. Possibly quite dated now, but a very very funny film. And very British.

Sean: Monty Python and the Holy Grail. The British are a sarcastic bunch and also quite leftfield in their comedic tastes. If you can’t get the sense of humour then a visit here is going to leave you stranded.

15.  The best book to read before visiting your country?

Thom: I honestly can’t think of a single book that’s worth reading set in this country.

Sean: Probablysomething by Dickens or Shakespeare (technically plays not books)

16.  The must eat dish or delicacy of your country?

Thom: The classic Sunday Roast. Roast beef, roast potatoes, Yorkshire puddings, veg, stuffing, horseradish sauce and lashings of gravy. Perfection.

Sean: Yeah, Sunday Roast is the best!

17.  The top three sayings to make travellers stay in your country easier? E.g. How much? Too expensive or Hello.

Thom: Beer comes in pints or halves. “I’ll have a pint/half of lager please barkeep”

The Underground public transport in London is called the Tube not the Subway. (Sean: and it’s pronounced ‘Choob’ not ‘te-u-be’

Never try to use Cockney rhyming slang – you’ll just end up sounding like a tool.

Sean: If someone asks “You alright?’ when you walk into a shop or when you first meet it means hello, how’re you? It doesn’t imply that you look distressed or dissevelled. You should respond in kind: ‘Yeah, you?’

‘Quid’ is slang for ‘pound’, eg that’ll be five quid = £5.

‘A cuppa’ is what everyone calls a cup of tea – ‘I fancy a cuppa’, ‘do you wanna cuppa?’ British tea comes with milk and often sugar, if someone asks how you like it they’re not getting fresh. ‘One lump or two’ means one teaspoon of sugar or two!

18.  Best time of year to visit?

Thom: I’m a summer man myself. Always lots and lots going on over the summer – music festivals, fetes, outdoor concerts.

19.  The 4 words that best describe your country:

Thom: Eclectic, Historic, Contrasting and Innovative.

Sean: Old, quirky, sarcastic, beer!

Follow the guys on Twitter @thom_sean

or see their blog –http://www.thomandsean.com

Pete in Sweden

Pete is a world traveller in the true sense, havng lived in Sweden, France and the UK and regularly travelling throughout Europe.

I met Pete in a hostel in Madrid in 2006 and we have been great friends ever since. If I ever need travel advice, he is the first one I turn to.

Pete now lives in Sweden and is loving the summers and the random coffee breaks. Also, of course, the hot swedish girls!!

Name
Pete Hodbod

Occupation
Videogame Designer

Country of Residence
Sweden

Country of Origin
UK

contact/ website
http://thehamsterfactor.com

Why do you love Travel?
The world is such a big interesting place, and I feel a need to see as much of it as possible.

Favourite place in your home country and why?
The Supermarket, because it has everything I miss most from home under one roof!

Best place for tourists to visit in your country?
The Archipelagos – just beautiful.

What other country would you life in if you had to leave your country?
London – It’s so different to the rest of the UK, it’s like being in another country. It’s probably the most international city on the planet and you can travel just about anywhere on the cheap.

Best travelling experience anecdote in your own country?
The Swedish government deliberately go out of their way to make it difficult for you to buy alcohol. Supermarkets can only sell beer up to 3.5%, so for anything stronger, spirits, or wine, you’ll need to go to the state run “System Bologet” where they deliberately close when you want to buy it most – after 6pm on weekdays, or after 3 on Saturday. Swedish people have learned however to stock up in advance.

Favourite activity when around your city?
Fika. It’s a Swedish obsession to stop for a break in the afternoon for coffee and cake.

Do you feel you know your country well, or is more exploring of your homeland needed?
Sweden’s a big country, and so far I’ve seen only the big cities and the South West. The country goes all the way north into the Arctic Circle (where they have the famous Ice Hotel), so there’s a lot left to see.

Any warnings for travellers visiting in your country?
Wait until summer before coming!
Summers are short but beautiful while winters are long and cold. Many Swedes take holidays abroad in winter but stay home in summer.

Must see movie featuring your country and Why?
You should watch the Wallander detective series (Version Original) to get a feeling for everyday life in Sweden.

The best book to read before visiting your country?
“The girl with a Dragon Tattoo” by Stieg Larsson for a taste of modern, gritty, and brutal modern Swedish crime literature.

The must eat dish or delicacy of your country?
Kanelbullar (Sweet Cinnamon rolls). I gained a 5-a-day addiction when I first arrived, but have since managed to ween myself off them.

The top three sayings to make travellers stay in your country easier? E.g. How much? Too expensive or Hello.
Swedish people generally speak excellent english and enjoy using foreigners as a chance to practice their english. But saying Hello, Thanks and Goodbye in Swedish is always polite.

Hej = Hello (hey)
en öl, tack! = one beer please (en url tack)
hejdå = goodbye (Hey-doh)


Best time of year to visit?
May to September

The 4 words that best describe your country:
Hot Blond Swedish Girls!

My Australian Australia Day

It had been 5 long years since  I had celebrated the National Day of my country in my own country. I had forgotten what it was like to celebrate with Australians, in the heat of Summer on our own turf.  So this year had to be a big one and 2010 certainly lived up. My Australia Day was jam packed full of Aussie goodness! Beaches, bikinis, Bondi and burnt to a crisp. What a day!

I wanted to also take this time to review  my last 5 Australia Days:

2006 – Delhi India.

I actually forgot it was Australia Day until the enving as it is also Indian Republic Day

2007 – London, England

Beers at 9am, watching the movie Chopper, singing the Anthem on the train and being denied from the Temple Walkabout. An English Australia Day with all the class.

2008 – BIG WHITE, BC, Canada

Working in housekeeping until 12pm, started drinking 12.30pm, BBQ outside our snowlobile hut. Riding a Snowmobile in my Australian Bikini before heading to Happy Valley Tavern, The Happiest Place on Earth! Freezing Cold, but we still wore our bikini’s and boardies.

2009 – Monterrey, Mexico

Student Exchange in Mexico with 35 other Aussie students provided us with an unusual setting for our Australia Day Celebrations. Triple JJJ Hottest 100 on the 25th (the day before due to timezones) and all day BBQ as we returned from a weekend in the dessert, followed by a Birthday Party/ Australia Day BBQ on the 26th. VB shirt was donned and beverages were consumed. FIESTA!



2010 – SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA

Bondi Beach, Havaina Thong Challenge (http://www.havaianasthongchallenge.com.au/), Mr Muscle Sprout (www.musclesprouts.com.au), my best girls, sun, sand and fun!

My Day in point form:

  • Up at a ghastly 7am to get to Bondi by 9am for HAVAINA registration.
  • Met Mr Mark Bouris from the Australian Apprentice.
  • Ran around with Mr Muscle Sprout to promote the Amazing China Challenge (View the Amazing China Challenge 2010 adventure brochure)
  • Lazed on the beach with my lovelies
  • Attempted a world record with 1200 other Sydney Siders
  • Got snapped by 2day FM cameras and appeared on the website – http://www.2dayfm.com.au – HOMEPAGE
  • Met with 2 other mates for summery lunch
  • MORE SWIMMING and more sun = more burn
  • Northies, Conulla at Night for Dancing with local mates

EPIC DAY! Amazing!

I am so lucky to have been able to share my National pride over 5 countries over the past 5 years. I must say though…. There is no place like home!

Thanks Sydney for a truly memorable Australia Day 2010

HAPPY NEW YEAR, 2009 Summary

Only 8 hours left of 2009 and it’s time to reflect on the year that was. I thought 2009 would be a big one for me, but I don’t think I realised how life changing some of the events would be. When you face the year ahead you make goals, plans and set targets for yourself, having direction is a great thing. Often though, it’s the unexpected and the changes, the things we never could have foreseen that really make us.

I’m not making any really big new years resolutions. I made a list of plans and things I would ‘like to’ achieve as I feel this is a much more flexible and approachable way to look at our future. The list of resolutions can often be reflected upon at the end of the year as a list of failed attempts. We shouldn’t feel discouraged and let down if we don’t get to do everything that we set out to do. So I’m saying for 2010, give it all you got, have a blast and make mistakes, it’s the best way to learn. Most of all, enjoy! Nothing is a waste of time as long as we learn from it and at differently in the future.

These are of few of my highlights from 2009:

  • Ringing in the New Year in London and spending New Year’s Day in Mexico
  • Spending 4.5 months in Monterrey, Mexico on Student exchange
  • Losing my Grandmother and having a tattoo done as a memorial to her
  • Doing an 18 day road trip from the Cancun – Oaxaca, Mexico with 3 Aussies and a Belgian
  • Visiting the incredible Mexico City, not once, not twice but 3 times!
  • Facing a pending Pandemic (aka swine flu) and fleeing Mexico for the United states In April 2009
  • Attending the Indy 500 qualifying weekend with my Cousin Bill and big brother James, May 2009
  • Sitting on a crocodile and riding an airboat in the Everglades, Miami, USA with my new German friends
  • Visiting all 4 Disneyworld parks in Orlando as well as the 2 Universal Studios parks over a period of 2 days.
  • Attending the FAPAA 36th Consecutive Council meeting in Bangkok, Thailand, for my work in Freight Forwarding.
  • Competing in the Easter Uni Games, Australian University Sports Competition in Soccer for UTS, and getting the Wooden spoon. Bathurst, NSW, Australia
  • Attending the UTS Ski Trip in Thredbo, Australia
  • Competing in the Australian University Snow Sports Competition at Thredbo Australia.
  • Breaking my back at the Australian Snow Sports Competition. Successfully fracturing 2 vertebrae, spending 1 week in hospital and 9.5 weeks in a back brace
  • Starting my blog – https://lovellyinc.wordpress.com
  • Attending my friend Khushboo’s wedding in Delhi, India
  • Riding an elephant in Chitwan National Park, Nepal
  • Visiting the charity www.roomtoread.com based in Kathmandu, Nepal
  • Seeing the Taj Mahal for the Second time in my life. Agra, India
  • Achieving my 5 yr dream of taking a vacation to the beaches of Goa, India
  • Returning to my beloved Mumbai and learning about the great history of India
  • Making it home in time for Christmas in Australia with family and friends

What a great year! 2009 has taught me a lot. I just can’t wait to see what 2010 holds.

HAVE A FANTASTIC NEW YEAR EVERYONE!