A major part of travel is getting through airports. The best advice I can give is be prepared and ask your travel agent or embassy if you need a visa (and if your children require visas) before heading off to a foreign country. Also in case of delays in flights, try to carry some snacks and water to keep everyone happy. It also helps to pre-book accommodation if you are going to be landing at some odd hour. I can tell you from personal experience that airline seats are not made for lounging or sleeping in! And patience is a must to get through busy queues at the major airports. Finally allow at least two hours between transferring flights, especially changing from domestic to international or vice versa. You want to keep the stress levels down, remember you are on holiday!
Firstly, aim to travel as light as possible. Just think, you will always buy more clothes at your destination. Which you most definitely will because a) the weather is not what you expected, and b) the fashion is not what you expected, and c) the fashion at your destination is far better than anything in your suitcase.
Toiletries weigh a lot. I repeat, toiletries weigh a lot. Find travel size bottles and fill them with your own goodies, or buy travel size samples to take. Do not buy a large toiletry bag unless you are travelling for a very very long time or are only staying in one or two places.
Pack sunscreen and mosquito repellant because you will need it when you least expect it. Ditto goes for personal hygiene products because running around a tour group asking if anyone has any tampons is really not a good look.
Only pack three pairs of shoes – one pair for casual strolling/hiking, one pair of casual sandals, and one pair of evening shoes (note – stilettos do not work well on cobblestones).
Recently I invented a new pastime – a mystery drive. This happened when I met my new love about four months ago and our first outing was a weekend ‘drive’. We had no plans as to where to go so we just picked a direction and headed off for what turned out to be a really scenic drive for many many hours to a very small town country tavern. We were treated so well and had a lovely dinner so we decided to do this again. My new love became my ‘mystery man’ then too, taking me for lots of mystery drives. We found them to be really refreshing and inspirational, with lots of new experiences we would not have otherwise had. We still enjoy them and I love to post up a picture on Facebook of where we end up. So if you are feeling like you are stuck in a rut or just like to meet new people and places I highly recommend a mystery drive!
My new book ‘Abandoned in Paris’ will be published very soon. Here is the synopsis.
Danica is on her second journey around the world, but this time she has a partner to contend with. Soon after they leave he turns nasty, threatening to leave her behind in London. In Amsterdam he gets her deliberately lost while negotiating canals on an old Dutch bicycle. She struggles with an insufficient map getting him lost in Toulouse in a camper-van that will not fit down the back streets. He decides to drive for three days solid from Bavaria to Portugal then kicks her out of the camper in France.
Forcibly walked to a Versailles train station, she sits in a daze on the train to Paris. Where will she stay? What should she do? With broken dreams, little money, no job to go back to, and her possessions scattered over Western Australia, can she pick up her life again?
She walks her luggage up and down the streets of Cambronne desperately trying to find accommodation for the weekend. Being high season she finally gets one night in a room so small she could not sit on the toilet. With one day to make plans where could she possibly go?
But if you knew Danica you would know that she has a huge inner strength and can achieve miracles. Overhearing a couple talk about Venice, Danica took this as a sign. She searched for an Internet cafe, booked a flight for the following morning and two nights at a Venice hostel. And so started the next chapter of her life.
Between discovering Italy, the United States, Alaska, Canada, and Costa Rica she rediscovers herself while regaining her confidence and zest for life.
Finally she gets transported back in time in Cuba where the opportunity for romance is everywhere. Between the horse trainer, the cabaret dancer and the cheeky tour guide, which one will take her fancy?