On the road again to somewhere or on the path to nowhere

On the road again.  Bags packed, passport updated, ticket purchased and hotel reserved.  Two out of four and I’m half way there, even if I haven’t a smidgen of a hint as to where I’m jetting off to, let alone whether I’m actually leaving the country.  For you see, even as I type the first paragraph of this week’s blog post, I still haven’t an inkling of a clue as to exactly where my fuchsia painted tootsies will be scampering, all I know is that a glorious one week chunk of time will be devoted to traipsing around some part of the globe.

Usually one to book my holiday at least six months in advance, I instead chose to deviate from the well-trodden path and foray into territories unknown and experience for myself the mystique of – gasp!! – Heavens forbid!! – those wildly popular “last minute” getaways.  Yikes!!  What have I gotten myself into?  The “What if” factor too terrifying to contemplate, I’ve always lacked the courage to throw caution to the wind and just go with it and blindly trust that the planets will be successful in procuring that one of a kind cheaply affordable Miss Pink Sneaker approved tailor made holiday to - ????  Where??  On the road to somewhere or perhaps instead on the path to nowhere.  Like, what are the chances??

What if there are no suitable last minute deals available and my long-anticipated vacation is spent languishing in front of the telly, drowning my sorrows sipping endless cups of tea?  Tea??  Like, seriously??  Who are we kidding here??  Oops – meant to say guzzling those soothing liquid libations of the tranquilizing vino tinto kind.

What ifhorror of horrors – there are no direct flights to my preferred destination and my pink-sneaker clad feet have to hoof it through five different time zones via all forms of travel known to mankind, with the help of a few farm animals along the way?  A cornucopia of planes, trains, automobiles, buses, rickshaws, donkeys, camels, rubber dinghys and roller-blades, just to name a few.  And then there is the added problem of cumbersome luggage, which throws quite the wrench into the process of schlepping.

What exactly do the terms “exclusive – tourist free – outdoorsy – rustic – quaint – sleeping under the starry eyed heavens – uninhabited – conversing with nature”  - really truly mean?  Are those just embellished words for setting up camp in a remote section of the woods, hundreds of miles away from the nearest log cabin, a locale so uncharted that it’s neither to be found by GPS nor tracked by Google maps?   And, to make matters even worse - I’m afraid of the dark.  And let’s not even mention the bears.

Woe then, would be I, as neither quaint artsy boutiques nor vino bars would beckon enticingly on the horizon, quite the sorry state of affairs for both the local economy and my satchel obsessive compulsive acquisition issues.

And, if those highly descriptive adjectives are any indication of a hint of exaggeration, then double woe is me, as it looks like I’m not the only one whose fondness for adjectives runs deep and I’ll have no choice but to resort to having to decipher and read between the lines for clues as to exactly what sort of vacation package is on the offer.

So, the adventure continues and I can guarantee that it will not be a disappointing read, as no matter where my footprints take me, an exhilarating sojourn awaits for the foot loose and fancy free Miss Pink Sneakers.  So, stay tuned for more escapades of the cuckoo ol’ Auntie Nora kind, as I traipse around the world, enriching my soul with both memories and memoires, frantically scribbling them down in journals along the way.

Pink Sneakers on the Go will be taking a mini break for the next couple of weeks and will be languishing in the sunshine, with a vino in one hand, pen and paper in the other, plotting and planning the next around the world excursion.

Returning to regular weekly Wednesday blogging on July 16th.

Stay tuned for more adventures of the cuckoo ol’ Auntie Nora kind!!  And, pray tell, where oh where is the Kid??

The Amazing Race taken to the next level of absurdity - Miss Kid and cuckoo ol' Auntie Nora style, of course!!

Miss Kid has long been fixated on accomplishing the impossible.  She’s fearless, a bit of a daredevil and stubborn as a bull.  Quite the contrast to her cuckoo ol’ Auntie, who’s a bit of a shopaholic, travel-a-holic and vino indulging batty old gal.  Miss Niece’s one and only goal in life is to travel the world, soak up the sights and set up camp in the Palace of Versailles so that she can hang out with the long-dead Queen and swap tales of life at Court.  Delusional.  But true.  A top second is to outrun her globetrotting old relative in the race around the globe, checking off a smidgen more countries than the wacky old Bag (quite the appropriate terminology, as her Auntie is somewhat of an obsessive satchel hoarder) could ever hope to do.

Dreaming of life as a lady in waiting at Court in Versailles

The race is on.  Who will cover more territory is a shorter frame of time?  Who will be the first to chalk off Australia?  And what about Monaco?  And, last but not least, Zimbabwe.  It’s quite the shame, though, that no one bothered to tell her wacky ol’ Auntie (that would be me!!) that there was a serious competition underway, an Olympic jaunt of circumventing the earth, on a marathon like none other, travel taken to an entirely new level of outlandishness.

And, the icing on the cake, to achieve all of this by the time she’s twenty.  Like, seriously??  And. Then what?  Languishing in front of the telly for the next 60 years?

Okay then.  That’s a lot of miles to cover, school and part-time work to miss and tons of dough to dish out.  There’s something to be said for youthful optimism.  Or, more likely, a warped sense of reality, one most likely based on tuning in to one too many episodes of lifestyles of the Rich and Famous.  The Kid had already beat out her ol’ Auntie by having set her hot pink pedicured tootsies on the sun bronzed isles of Greece, a parcel of land that her mother’s sister had not yet had the privilege of gallivanting about.  But hey, Miss Niece, your ol’ Auntie’s got a bit more mileage on her, a good 40 years or so, where you’ve got the gift of time and the rest of your life to traverse the globe. 

The Kid recently had the privilege of jetting off to the land of magical carpet rides, hanging out with sheik sultans, yachts and camels in ultra-rich over the top decadently chic Dubai.  Her ol’ Auntie sat mesmerized for days on end, drooling over glossies of Miss Niece’s nights spent languishing under the starry-eyed heavens, childhood dreams of One Hundred and One Arabian Nights swirling in her head, just a tad envious of the Kid’s exotic sojourns.  Just a wee bit.  Like, geez, the closest her ol’ Auntie’s ever gotten to a camel was eyeballing one at the zoo, un-elegantly tripping over the pungent droppings of said exotic animal.  Messy.  Smelly.  But true.  Does that count for something?

The Amazing Race taken to the next level, with Miss Kid in the current lead, weeks away from jetting across the pond to yet another foreign locale, another coveted stamp soon to be added to her now burgeoning passport.  Grinning from ear to ear, envisioning her poor (literally!!) ol’ Auntie sitting dejectedly at home, lamenting her travel-less state, Miss Niece was smug as a bug, secure in the knowledge that victory was hers.

Are you certain about that, Missy?  Little did Miss Smarty Pants Niece know that she was soon to have the rug pulled out from under her, as I’ve been busy hatching a plan and plotting the next sojourn – one that didn’t involve languishing on the sofa or watching endless re-runs of long outdated travel documentaries.

As if the world is her oyster.

And, hey, Miss Kid, your allowance can only get you so far!!

Nonetheless, youth will be youth, and lessons must be learned first-hand.

The showdown is on. 

Who will succeed in racing around the globe, claiming victory to be theirs and theirs alone?  Tune in each week for more Miss – adventures of the Miss Kid and the not so daft or cuckoo ol’ Auntie Nora kind.

Next week – what next??  But, more importantly, where to next?  The adventure continues…

Greece and Dubai pictures courtesy of Maradzidra.

Pleeeaze send pictures, I've got a travel blog to maintain and other such ridiculous requests and ramblings

It’s quite the sad state of affairs when a travel blogger becomes totally dependent on having to rely upon her 17 year-old niece’s digital snapshots and tales of global wayfaring in order to add a hint of authenticity to her wacky weekly blog post entries.  No recent get-away to gush about, no entertainingly amusing wanderlust adventures to scribble about, no tall tales to rave about.  Nada.  Nothing.  Zero.  Zilch.  The well had run dry and drought had descended upon the land.  Land?  What land?  On the road not well travelled, of course.

The good ol' days of traipsing around the globe

Robert Frost would certainly have taken the road less travelled by, opting to instead choose one of two diverging paths in the wood, traipsing along on adventures unknown, relishing the undiscovered journeys that lay ahead.  Me Miss Pink Sneakers, on the other hand, had no such luck, stuck in a quagmire of work and responsibilities, unable to jet-away at a moment’s notice, languishing my life away amongst the drudgery of endless bills, lamenting my lack of trust fund issues.  For, you see, nary a pink sneaker clad tootsie had set foot upon foreign soil in almost a year.  No travel, no stories, no pictures, no memories.  Nada.  Nothing.  Zero.  Zilch.

And so, desperate measures require desperate actions and when one is all tapped out and has a primarily picture-less travel blog, especially one that is dependent upon picturesque glossies of the National Geographic inspiring kind, what’s a cuckoo ol’ Auntie to do but hit up the Kid for her stash – of pictures and back-packing memories.  Asking (actually begging, if you must know) Miss Niece into relinquishing a few of her photos was a task of monumental proportions, an exercise in frustration, determination and all-out bribery.  After all, her lunatic old Aunt has a weekly blog to maintain and come hell or high water, the schedule must be strictly adhered to and pictures must be posted alongside cleverly worded scribbles. 

And so, every Tuesday evening, I found myself in the undesirable predicament of a partially penned tale, cursed with full-blown writer’s block of the non productive kind, wondering whether this week’s blog post would be the one that laid bare the bones of my lack of creative genius, desperately grasping at straws for a spark of inspiration to flitter my way.  Seizing an opportune moment to move on in, Mr. Writer’s Block boldly took up residence in my corner of creativity, a soon to be permanent squatter of the uninvited kind.  To make matters even worse, Miss Niece had once again neglected to send said promised vacation photos, leaving her poor ol’ Auntie in quite the conundrum, for a blog with neither content nor pictures makes for quite the pathetic travel memoir indeed.  Sad.  But true.

Type, damn keys, type!!!!

Awake way past the witching hour and rising with the crows, I grew accustomed to spending Wednesday evenings in a comatose and bleary-eyed state, staring blankly at the computer screen, wondering whether this would be the week that the charade was over.  Ears perked for that long anticipated “ding” in my Inbox, the incessant tic tock of the clock counting down the minutes till midnight, I dejectedly resigned myself to the fact that this week’s blog post would be non existent, content-less, picture-less and post-less. 

Zzzzzz - the picture speaks for itself - hey, Miss Kid, where are those pics?

Like, seriously, why couldn’t Miss Kid just keep to her word and send one or two pics my way?  Quite the nerve-racking process, this being held in limbo, required quite the stoic disposition, a bit of fortitude and copious amounts of vino tinto to help ease my tattered nerves into a tranquilized state of liquefied bliss.  Glued to the laptop, perched on a hot bed of tender-hooks – waiting – waiting – and endlessly waiting – for that musical ping of a “ding” to ring in my ears signalling that magical eureka moment of pictures sent.

Nothing.  Nada.  Zero.  Zilch.

Time then, to reach for yet another soothingly intoxicating bevie.  One.  Two.  And then a bit more.  You get the picture.  At least someone does.

The Kid, meanwhile, was grinning mischievously on the other side of cyber-land, methodically waiting until the very last second to hit “Send”, successfully succeeding in pushing her ol’ Auntie even closer to the edge of insanity, thus accomplishing her goal of rendering the batty old Bag even wackier than cuckoo.  A deviously wicked plan.  Cunning.  Cruel.  Brilliantly executed.  And true.

And so yet another weekly blog post was mere seconds away from being published, right on schedule, with a few frazzled nerves acquired in the process, tears spilt, pencils broken and one too many liquid libations guzzled.  

Natch.  Piece of cake.  Wouldn’t have it any other way.

Just another day in the life of a jet setting travel blogger.

Come hang out with cuckoo ol’ Auntie Nora as she scribbles her way around the world, desperately trying to cram in 52 weeks of travel tales into a 3 week vacation, with a wee bit of help from Miss Smarty Pants Niece to supply her with extra material, if and when required.

Come traipse around the world with the best of them and read all about the highly dysfunctional dynamics between a batty old Bag and a know-it all Miss Kid.

Next week- what next??  Yikes!!  There’s more??

Stay tuned for more Miss – adventures of the Kid and Auntie Nora inspired kind!!