Posts tagged “europe

The Paris Marathon & I

Posted on 27 August 2018

Sometimes, things just work out. My partner, Ben, was going to be attending a work conference in Nice in April and we could take a bit of time off work beforehand to travel. Even better, my friend, Ellie, was living and working in Paris so we could visit her as a part of the trip. Ellie and I ran our first marathons at around the same time, and though she has outperformed me by far since then, running a bunch of others, we had been talking about doing one together for a while. So, when Ellie pointed out that the Paris Marathon would be taking place when Ben and I were planning to visit, we decided to sign up. It would be my second…

A Taste of Bruges

Posted on 4 August 2018

The two most common reactions I’ve gotten when I mentioned visiting Bruges have been, “oh, it’s so cute!” and “oh, it’s really crowded.” Both are true; it’s crowded because it’s cute. And yet, we managed to miss the crowd crush and enjoy our few days in the city. We arrived by train from Brussels (so comfortable! so convenient!) and wandered through the drizzle with our backpacks to where we were staying. This set the tone for our stay: walking under grey skies and in the rain. We did get some sun while there – and some strong downpours – but in large part, we had to content ourselves with being wet. We still walked around, but I suspect many others did not, leaving the…

In The Right Place

Posted on 8 May 2018

My awareness was fraying at the edges. It was morning in Brussels, but per my internal clock, who knows? Three nights in Ohio skittered by, each one wonderful but marked by progressively less sleep. Next was a transatlantic flight, which was marked by more anxiety than sleep as I sat isolated, thanks to a kind flight attendant, blasting music into my ears so I wouldn’t hear other passengers retching on the bouncy flight. I got off my string of flights in Brussels eager to spend some time exploring on the ground, but also a little jumbled, not entirely aware. I glanced at the train track number for my train to Brussels from the airport and climbed onto the first train that pulled up. About…

Revelry and a Robbery: Finnish Music Festivals

Posted on 11 November 2014

  Summers in Finland are magical and bright. The northern sun, barely setting, electrifies the air. Everyone feels this and revels in it, spending time in summer cottages, eating ice cream outside, and enjoying the variety of music festivals that the country has to offer. I’ll admit, I’m obsessed with Finland and can’t keep away—I’ve been seven times. I first went to meet friends, and the country has gripped me ever since. I’ve been back to visit them, and even managed to stay an entire summer, studying at Helsinki Summer University. I’ve planned the timing of other trips to and within Finland around music festivals. I’ve been lucky to attend a number of different Finnish music festivals—Provinssirock, Ruisrock, Qstock, and Flow Festival. I went…

World, You’re Too Large – But Don’t Ever Shrink

Posted on 5 July 2014

Travel planning for me is at once an exercise in imagination and restraint. I have to be forcefully focused in how I approach my daily research in order to make concrete plans, because reading about how to get from Klaipėda to Riga can quickly turn into wild desires to visit Cape Kolka during my limited schedule and then dreaming about spending months bicycling through the Baltics. Weeks turn into simply not enough time. The more I learn, the more I want to see for myself. Hey world, you’re making me ravenous. Given my propensity for distracting myself with ever more grandiose plans, travel research becomes my primary activity, and it occupies by far the most brain space. I can connect almost anything I do to travel planning. Reading? Well,…