Growing up in a valley, I’ve always fondly referred to mountains as my security blanket; having them encompassing me on all sides is where I feel most at home. You can imagine, therefore, just how incredibly elated I was to arrive in the stunning Swiss Alps – the second stop on our 18-day Topdeck Tour.
Unlike our visit to Dubai, I had heard so many negative things about Paris that I didn’t have high hopes at all. Yet another example of how misleading expectations can be! People had told me it was smelly, full of pickpockets, and the people were rude, with some suggesting we just bypass Paris altogether. As I told them, at least they had the opportunity to make up their mind about Paris, and I intended on having that opportunity too – and I’m so thankful we did, because (cue the cliche) I absolutely fell in love with the city of love!
Dubai has always intrigued me. I mean, it’s got the tallest, biggest, highest and most expensive…everything, whilst also being in the middle of the desert. According to Instagram, it also seems to be the place expats live incredibly glamourous lives. Did somebody say ‘tax free’? So when we were planning our honeymoon and booked flights with Emirates, we decided to turn our airport stopover in Dubai into a three night/four day visit to see what all of the fuss is really about.
Travelling makes me nervous.
Perhaps that’s why I haven’t done a lot of it. As I approached my high school graduation, I imagined spending my gap year trekking through South America with a backpack bigger than my head and torso combined, or hostel-hopping around Europe, absorbing cultural experience and foreign beers in equal parts. But booking tickets, packing my bag, getting on a plane and navigating my way around?