London then back to reality...
26.03.2010 - 10.06.2010 -50 °C
Hello for the last time... well, for now anyway. I'm sad to be ending my blog and even more sad that it's the end of my trip.
I arrived in London after a long flight, made longer by the small brat sat in the row in front of me. It's father had his chair back as far as it would go until his head was nearly in my lap and the spawn of satan was let loose in the aisles of the plane and took great joy in hitting everyone who was alseep or otherwise as he went running up and down. I know it must be boring for a child on a plane but there is a limit... Got off the plane and stood in the customs queue for ages, why don't these people smile?? Once through, I stopped at Costa coffee and bought a rubbish latte then made my way over to the phone chip vending machine then spent near an hour on the vodaphone website trying to activate it, finally got it going and hopped on a train to meet up with new friends who let me kip on their couch which I shared with Daniel the Spaniel who snores...
They were so welcoming and I felt instantly comfortable and relaxed with them all, they even had a wee shindig in my honour on my last night, how nice is that?? I also met up with my mate Alex who I went through Vietnam with, she's ace. We had lunch and coffee and did some mooching about London. I also met up with my friend David who took me to a very posh resturant in Pall Mall where you're not allowed ot have your mobile on. I didnt know this at the time, so when my phone rang I thought it was hilarious, the Ace of Spades blaring out of my shopping bag handbag hehe I got a few furrowed brows for that haha
I went to a gallery and found my way to the london office of my old work to see Tracy and Neelai which was great. Londons a funny place, the tube is mad, no one talks to you or looks at you, they all just stand there looking at the floor or read the free metro paper for fear of making any sort of eye contact. One morning the tube stopped between stations and switched it's engine off. Deathly silence filled the carriage and I burst out laughing, I couldn't help it, it was just so weird. I got a lot of room after that with people slowly edging away from the nutter on the train... While walking the streets a woman handed me a flower wrapped in tin foil and asked me for 'money for the children' I asked her for her ID and she got all shirty with me 'I don't need ID laaav' so I didn't give her anything and handed back the flower, so rude. I also asked someone for directions in the street and they didn't want to know, it was an italian man who helped me in the end. Londoners are so mean, even in Morrisons while shopping for pavlova ingredients I felt intimidated and small. I wouldn't live in London if you paid me, it's mean and nasty. Of all the places I've been in the world, London is the only place that made me feel scared, intimidated and unsafe. Well, I'm not saying I'd walk the streets of La Linea on my own at night, esp through the ghetto at the border and esp after I got mugged there a few years ago and again, I might not feel too comfortable alone at night in Edinburgh but London just has that air of trouble brewing about it. You might think I'm mad but it's true. I got off the tube after my meal in Pall Mall and practically ran all the way home after texting my friends to let them know I was on my way. It was dark and wet and a big dog barked at me and 2 big burly blokes stood on the corner and stared at me eeek!! me no like. I suppose it doesn't help that all you hear in the media is bad things, I'm sure it's lovely and paved in gold somewhere... The people I was staying with were from Tazmania, Finland and South Africa by the way, not london and like I said before, very nice indeed.
Back on a plane and off to Scotland, got off the plane and no one was there to meet me... poor me... nearly a year away and not a parent in sight. Do you know why? they were having a drink!! shocking isn't it, had to wait outside in the cold for them to arrive, I'm not sure if I'll ever get over it... Being back in Scotland is just weird, in a nice way but strange all the same. I haven't lived here for 14 years so don't really know anyone, it's great to see my family and LeeAnne tho. For the first 2 weeks I was just waiting on my next move then realising I didn't have one I got the post travel blues and booked a flight to Spain. Being back in Spain/Gibraltar was great, I missed my friends so much and even tho it rained quite a lot when I was there it was still warm and felt like I was home. I threw my girls around the room and got jumped on in the guise of Auntie GiGi, went out with Lee-Ann in Spain, great night that was. Drinks with the lads and lunch with friends. On my last night I sat in the pub from about 12 noon and watched people come and go all day. Felt like the queen sitting there hello, goodbye, hello, goodbye then back on the plane and back to Scotland... time to look for a job boohoooo still looking...
Well what can I say, it's been a stormer of a year and I have loved every single minute, day, night and second of it. I have loads of favourite places I would love to go back to and loads of favourite people I'd love to see again and will see again for sure. Off to Dublin in July to see Aisling that I travelled through Indonesia with for a start. I've been to amazing places, see amazing things and met totally fabulous people along the way (and the odd weirdo). I've basked in the sun on glorious beaches, climbed volcanos, snorkelled the great barrier reef, got drunk on buckets of mekong whiskey, fell over a lot, jumped out of an aeroplane, threw ninja stars, meditated on a hill top, danced the night away and fell in love with the world and everything thats in it. I met a dog that got eaten by his owners dad, took a dip in a volcanic lake, had lunch in a hill tribe house, held hands with a wild orangutan, got eaten alive by mosquitos and bed bugs, lost a toe nail, got robbed in the street and on the beach, got stuck in a hole and broke a rib trying to get out, flew in a helicopter and treked through the jungles of Thailand. I went to festivals and gigs, zoos and ninja castles, got beaten at pool, played on a climbing frame, triumphed at singstar and buzz, scared a wombat and cuddled a Koala. I've eaten weird and wonderful food in resturants and hawker stands, on the street and in road side cafes. I stayed in hotels and backpackers, tents, squat like holes, on sofas at friends houses and even shared peoples beds (it's cheaper to share a double before you start thinking that I'm some sort of floosy) I travelled on planes, buses, trains, tuk tuks, cars, trams, boats, by elephant, truck and motorbike.
People ask me all the time what my favourite bit or place was. I can never come up with a straight answer. I loved SE Asia a lot esp Vietnam and Cambodia then I can't forget Laos it was gorgeous and the north of Thailand was amazing then of course there's Japan, it was crazy and brilliant. I had the best time ever in Australia meeting up with old friends and new, Melbourne being my favorite city there, for lots of different reasons. I loved Indonesia and LA, Vancouver was fantastic and Malaysia was great although the food didn't like me. Oh I loved it all, I didn't want it to end, I still wish it was last year now so I could do it all again.
The people I met and travelled with with truely brilliant and I plan on keeping in touch with them.. you have been warned... I'd like to see more of Vietnam and Japan and will definately go back to Australia. I'd also like to see some of Europe, Africa, South America and do the transiberian railway trip. I love travelling.
Thank you to everyone who's been reading my waffle and kept in touch while I wondered the world. Also a massive thank you to everyone who supported me, put me up, fed me and entertained me. You are ACE!!
Better get saving for the next trip.....!!