When Mark and I married, I was 22. Mark traveled all over Europe the year before we met; I had never left the country. The only trips I'd been on were to Disneyworld and Cape Cod. I loved those vacations, but always dreamed of visiting Ireland, Italy, and Germany. I never felt particularly Irish, Italian, or German, but thought that if I traveled to those places, I might have more of a connection to my heritage. I feel so blessed that this has been case with Italy. I never imagined I'd be there twice in two years, and with two of my favorite people in the whole world - my husband and my sister!
A few weeks ago, Mark and I booked a 16 day trip to Europe. He graduated from Babson on May 16th, and is currently job hunting. It seemed like good timing - neither of us would be working. (I suppose to some Debbie Downers, that sounds like bad timing.) Anyway, I knew I wanted to blog about our travels. Why? There are a number of reasons, but for the general public, the most relevent one is as follows. There's a book that Wisconsin Beth always used to refer to, and I've heard it's now a movie - "He's just not that into you." Tweak that phrase a little, and you have our philosophy on traveling. Mark and I know that you're just not that into us. So we'll refrain from tweeting, updating our Facebook statuses daily, and flooding your inbox while we're on vacation (and you're at your desk.) That said, there are a decent number of people who may want to hear how things are going as we make our way through a few countries. Thus, the blog.
I won't be updating daily. It'll probably be more like every few days, depending on where we stay. We leave for Spain on June 14th at 9:30pm, and arrive in Barcelona at 4:55pm on June 15th. We'll spend a few days in Barcelona, then head to Tornio, Italia on June 19th, making our way to the Aosta Valley in the Italian Alps (and if we can manage it, a few days in Switzerland). On June 24th, we fly to Sicilia, and will tour the island, hopefully meeting some distant cousins. Our return flight to Boston is on July 2nd.
After my trip to Italy last year, and the go at it this year, I'm half-heartedly considering writing a book called, "The Poor Man's Guide to Europe." Maybe some of my posts will turn into chapters. Whenever I tell people (most of whom have higher-paying jobs than we do) about my previous trip, and the one we've booked, they ask how we have the funds, or make comments about how it must be nice to afford a trip to Europe. Though there are certainly exceptions and seasons in our lives, most people have options, and can prioritize the way they spend their money. Things that some consider non-negotiable (like drinks, movies, shoes, and fancy dinners), might just be options for others. Additionally, there are ways to get cheap or free flights, low or no-cost accomodations, eat three meals a day, and still enjoy your time in Europe. The prioritizing that needs to happen both in your daily life as you're saving up for a trip like this, and while overseas, is not for everyone. It may take some time (Mark and I have been married 6 years!), but it can be done. Not having children makes the whole process a lot easier, too! Maybe I'll do a posting series about the financial piece when we're back.
So, check in whenever, and leave us some love (or suggestions). Ciao, adios!