MY FIRST IMPRESSIONS UPON ARRIVING IN
…I had a mere twenty to thirty minutes ride on my “private” shuttle bus (private because I was the only passenger being picked up at that time 🙂 )!, with my chatty energetic shuttle bus Travel Guide Assistant as my driver was extraordinarily quiet! …I customarily LOVE to soak the landscape in! This, in order to take in my very first impressions of the place I have just landed to and arrived at, (both litteraly & figuratively), through its scenic window landscape views (whenever I arrive during the daytime). Indeed, I just quietly watch the scenery and observe the locals and non-locals from my window seat (this is the Nature Lover, Meditative Thinker, Poet, Writer and Photographer in me :))! …As my driver’s shuttle bus bubbly Travel Guide Assistant was just kindly chatting away with me and asking the usual questions one asks to the just picked-up newly arrived tourists:: -How was your flight? -How long are you staying for? -Is this your first time in this country? -Where are you flying from? -Do you have a lot of activities planned during your stay? -What is your profession? -Are you traveling alone? Soooooooo, as we get to these three last questions (whether they are asked by a male or by a female), I usually am extra diplomatic and cautious as to my replies :)! Let me therefore revisit these last questions with some replies or similar ones I might give, according to my mood and/or my level of tiredness :)! :)! :)! -Do you have any activities planned? Yes, I have a few organized tours planned (I NEVER disclose that I also plan to do my own SOLO sightseeing tours, depending on the safety of the country and/or region in which I find myself…)! …And also of course, spend much time at the beach and perhaps do some activities there as well as swimming and hang out by the pool! (Neither do I disclose that I also wish to nap every single day after my morning activities and/or after my scheduled or my non-scheduled tours as the locals truly DO NOT UNDERSTAND why some of us NEED to NAP on “vacation” when we have paid (at least I, myself since I still am an independent non-sponsored part-time Travel Explorer & Blogger)… Well, for now at least :)! …As MOST of us travel to be away from our usual respective lives’ hecticness & daily stressors… As such, our minds, bodies and souls most assuredly NEED to recuperate from it all and boy oh boy…!!! …Those couple of hours’ “away from home” power naps, MOST CERTAINLY DO WONDERS to one’s holistic self (LOL:))!!! I am more than certain that many travelers will agree with me on this.:)! …I nonetheless assure you that the locals usually find this odd! …Unless you have a significant other with you… Ahem :)! :)! :)! …As they would be TOO HAPPY to know that your baby was conceived at the place your partner and you stayed at on your vacay or travels if you are heterosexual. …But I am digressing in a murky territory here, with regards to vacation and babies, that is :)! :)! :)!
…So, back to my replies as the locals are ALWAYS pleasantly HAPPY to recomnend additionnal tours & activities that you ABSOLUTELY MUST DO and/or SEE upon your stay… :)! :)! :)! This, even if you are just at the specific location for two to three days, one day, half a day or even just a mere few hours…:)! They will fondly and more than kindly recomnend the “MUST SEE” sightseeing landmarks and other tours to go on even though you clearly let them know that you are all “toured booked-up…:)!” …They will also recommend local restaurants for you where you MUST GO to eat at, with the usual slightly diplomatic sarcastic smiley remark and a straight direct stare at you from their rearview mirrors or just bluntly turn around to look at you while asking when you both know that it is clearly NOT a question but more an expectation of affirmation: “…You DO NOT plan to eat ALL of your meals at the place you are staying, do you…?!” Soooooooo, as a black mostly Solo Cultural Travel Explorer throughout these past five to six years and as a recent Blog Writer from an originally non-highly industrialized country, I ONE HUNDRED PERCENT am an ADAMANT SUPPORTER and ADVOCATE for Local Tourism Exploration..:)! This is one of the reasons why I decided to take a giant leap and create my blog…:)! ….As I, myself have been and still am following a couple of other Travel Bloggers of different race, origins, nationalities, cultures etc..! I indeed realized the power of today’s Travel Blogging in shaping, in molding, in influencing and in encouraging a diverse group of people worldwide: YOU: my Blog Readers :), to get out of your respective comfort zones and cocoons to explore diiferent horizons in a way you had perhaps NEVER previously thought about…:)! …And yet, even more still, to look at a Global Traveler’s perspective, who might be of a different race, culture, nationality, origin and/or gender than yourself…! As these VERY IMPORTANT factors MOST ASSUREDLY determine one’s traveling experiences (whether negatively or positively, like the traveling experience I am currently blogging about…! …This, not solely when traveling alone (like I mostly presently do… As my friends and my partner cannot just pick-up and accompany me on every single one of my travels and at anytime since they have their very jobs and own schedules that do not always coincide with mine… And as I typically have started to travel five times a year to both: national and international destinations as New York City is my home base. Also, most full-time Travel Bloggers and Travel Explorers are “child free” like myself and between their mid-twenties, late thirties. and forties..! Many of them DO NOT or NO LONGER HAVE therefore have a child/children to worry about on a daily on-going basis such as: school, after-school extra curricular activities, academic testing, child rearing, play dates, child’s medical and dental appointments, college funds, child’s long-term financial planning etc… …As traveling with a family or a child/various children is an entirely different story than simply traveling alone and/or with other full grown adults…! Oh please, do not get me wrong here and misinterprete what I am trying to state….:)! As I have many friends & family members who travel at least once a year with their kids…. :)! ….And they create wonderful life lasting traveling experiences for their offsprings just like my dear beloved deceased mother created for my sisters and I eversince we were very little! …What I nonetheless am factually stating here, is that the whole planning and traveling dynamics as well as the financial aspects of it all. are one hundred percent absolutely different…! This, even on an inexpensive tight budget..! Please, do take my word for it as I, myself have traveled several times in the past & presently still sometimes do (on short week-end trips) with: toddlers, small cildren, pre-teen children, teenagers and young adults either with my nieces and/or with my closest relatives and friends’ kids…!!! Also, I was an “Au-Pair”/Live-In Nanny in English, for an entire year in Spain’s largest Baleares’ islands of Majorca…:)! I therefore DO VERY MUCH KNOW what traveling with anyone underage fully entails :)! :)! :)! I have yet nonetheless presently once again digressed here, which I often do as I write my blog articles… :)! …For neither am I still being graded on my papers nor is my writing being assessed for a grant proposal submission :)! This therefore IS simply my UNIQUE form of writing expression :)! :)! :)! -Who says that STANDING OUT in your OWN UNIQUENESS, is OVERRATED… :)? :)? :)? -“Not I!!!”, she responded with a huge friendly grin on her face :)! :)! :)!