ABCs of Travel
A: Age you went on your first international trip:
I was 14 and went on a mission with my church youth group to an orphange in Tijuana
B: Best (foreign) beer you’ve had and where:
That’s not really a fair question at all. Guinness in Ireland probably tops the list. MacFarlands in Italy was memorable.
C: Cuisine (favorite):
Italian of course. Followed closely by Indian and Thai.
D: Destinations, favorite, least favorite and why:
Italy is my favorite for obvious reasons with Ireland being a close second.
Least favorite was the Bahamas (I know, I can’t believe I’m saying it) but that doesn’t mean I hated it, just not somewhere I want to go back.
E: Event you experienced abroad that made you say “wow”:
In 1991 I was 17 miles from the epicenter of a 7.4 earthquake in Costa Rica. My friends and I spent the next week trying to survive and make our way back to the capital city in time for our flight home. That of course is a whole other story!
F: Favorite mode of transportation:
Train. Unless I’m in a car on the autostrada.
G: Greatest feeling while traveling:
When I first get off the plane at my destination. All the hours of planning and the weeks of anticipation that lead up to that moment.
H: Hottest place you’ve traveled to:
Madrid during a heat wave in a hostel with no a/c.
I: Incredible service you’ve experienced and where:
Locanda Orseolo in Venice, Vento di Rose in Monterubbiano and this little B&B/restaurant/pub/farm on the Dingle Peninsula in Ireland.
J: Journey that took the longest:
My flight to and from Paraguay where I lived for a summer. Over 24 hours on planes, buses and in the back of a pick-up truck.
K: Keepsake from your travels:
I found a necklace in a second-hand store in Cortona. It is a simple silver necklace with a green stone and a great story….if only I understood what the woman was telling me.
L: Let-down sight, why and where:
Valencia, Spain. The beaches were dirty and not at all what we expected. Probably didn’t help that I had one of my top three worst hang overs on arrival.
M: Moment where you fell in love with travel:
Easy. Looking into the eyes of the orphans when I was 14. Hook. Line. Sinker.
N: Nicest hotel you’ve stayed in:
A castle in Germany on the Rhine river. We were in the turret and had a 12 course dinner that night.
O: Obsession—what are you obsessed with taking pictures of while traveling?:
LOLs. That’s right. I stalk little old ladies (and men). I am also obsessed with taking a picture of the view from the windows of every place I stay.
P: Passport stamps, how many and from where?
I would have more, but they don’t stamp between countries in Europe anymore. So countries visited?? 17
Q: Quirkiest attraction you’ve visited and where:
The baths in Budapest. I was given a ‘robe’ that either covered the top or the bottom but not both. I soon realized it didn’t matter anyway. I was given a massage by a burly woman smoking a cigarette who give my ass a slap when she was done.
R: Recommended sight, event or experience:
A family style dinner anywhere. I’ve enjoyed the experience in Italy many, many times but have also dined this way in Ireland, Germany and France. No better way to meet people and experience the real deal.
I also had the chance to make my own pottery at a studio in Le Marche. See my article here.
S: Splurge; something you have no problem forking over money for while traveling:
My Italian leather purse from a little shop in Orvieto.
T: Touristy thing you’ve done:
The classic gondola ride.
U: Unforgettable travel memory:
Spending over a month in Italy traveling with my daughter and meeting my parenting.
V: Visas, how many and for where?
W: Wine, best glass of wine while traveling and where?
A glass of Brunello at a little wine shop in Cortona
X: eXcellent view and from where?:
Vernazza in the Cinque Terre. Read more here about their recovery from the flood and mudslide that buried the town October 25th 2011
Y: Years spent traveling?:
Since I was 14, so 23 and a half.
Z: Zealous sports fans and where?:
Soccer, anyway in Europe but I experienced it personally in Italy.
Copyright 2012 Andi Brown, Once in a Lifetime Travel
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