It’s not everyday that one takes off and extensively travels with your grown up children. In fact, talking to other people, it seems to be quite rare. However, this is exactly what I’m doing for the next 5 weeks, and I’m looking forward to every single bit of it.
My daughter has been living abroad for 2.5 years, and she really wanted me to come and visit her while she was over. As much as I wanted to travel, it wasn’t in my 5 year plan as sensibility has set in with the big 50th birthday was coming up fast, and I needed to start thinking of my retirement.
That all fell to custard when an air ticket arrived via email, and a few days later, the start of an itinerary. She decided I needed to see as much as Europe as I possibly can as it could be mylast chance to get over to that side of the world. And a 50th birthday thrown in as well. I had already rung my cousins in Sydney and asked them to ‘hide’ me for my 50th. But when this opportunity came up I had to make a choice – Sydney or Europe? Sydney or Europe? Having never been to Europe before in my life, (apart from 4 days in London in 1979), Europe won out.
Travelling Europe has changed in the last 10-15 years or so, with the advent of cheap airfares. Kombi Vans used to be the thing – one would pick up and drive to where the mood took you, over a period of several weeks or months. These days, the younger generation doing their big OE (overseas Eperience), research cheap airfares online, then take off from London or other city, for a weekend in an exotic city such as Prague or Marrakech. They arrive on a Friday night, sample the nightlife, explore the city during the day, sample the nightlife again, then after the hangovers have cleared, they head back to London for another week of work. My daughter is no exception – in fact, she is the Queen of Cheap Airfares. While I think I have a cheap airfare to Auckland from Blenheim at $99NZD, she manages to get to Norway for as little as 6 pounds. There is no comparison!
As much as I love New Zealand, I feel it's too far away from the rest of the world at times, especially when you log into facebook and see another photo album put up of the last weekends antics in some exotic city.
But now it’s my turn. And I’m going to find out what it’s like to travel round a few places in Europe using the younger generation way of travel. Luckily I will have the Expert with me, and I just may pick up some new tricks,
I’ll be blogging a little each day, and will add a photo or two. Currently I’m sitting in Kuala Lumpur Airport in Malaysia waiting for my flight to Amsterdam where I will be meeting Anne at 6.35am.
Apart from having a cold and bursting my eardrum as I flew out of Auckland, and a sore foot from my operation in July, I’m excited and really looking forward to my new adventures! Hoping to sleep the entire way to Amsterdam!
Watch this space….