Saturday, September 20, 2014

Paris, Strasbourg, the Alsace, and More Cities Please

Ahh, Paris. It's the perfect place for cemeteries and macarons, my favorite things. Well, actually, macarons are off the list of favorite things. I ate way too many of them. Good thing the last one I ate was the best one. LOOK NO FURTHER: Winner of the macaron tasting tour is Pierre Herme, specifically, the vanilla and olive oil flavor. I didn't go that many places, though, because I was fed up with sweets. I'm all about the cheese and bread now.
I had a macaron from McDonalds...I don't want to talk about it
Winner of the cemetery tour? Pere Lachaise, duh, although it had an unfair advantage considering it was cloudy and thundering while we were there. Also, Oscar Wilde's grave.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Iceland, Paris, and No Sleep

Steve and I didn't sleep for probably two days and we still haven't really adjusted yet. What a great feeling it is to finally be in Paris with no flights to catch for the foreseeable future, though. Airplanes, am I right? Maybe I'll finally stop yelling at Steve for daring to speak to me at a cranky moment. He calls me "Snappy the crocodile" now. It doesn't help matters.

After an uneventful 7 hour flight from Seattle, we had an 18 hour layover in Iceland, where I rented a car for the first time. It went mostly well, except for the times that I took the wrong exit at one of the 80000 roundabouts. I also was getting close to falling asleep at some point, so we decided to take a nap in the car at the Geysir parking lot. I awoke to the person parked next to us standing next to the window, probably admiring my record-breaking drool production.
Thingvellir National Park
I visited Iceland the last time I went backpacking in Europe (2011), but somehow didn't do the Golden Circle tour or go to the Blue Lagoon. Oh man, did I ever make up for it this time....

Sunday, September 14, 2014

6 Months in Europe: Yes, It's Happening

The day is finally here. Steve and I are leaving for ~6 months to backpack around Europe. This is my first time traveling with a giant backpack instead of a carry-on sized one and it looks comically large. This is the main thing I'm worrying about right now because I literally cannot remember how checked luggage works, and it's also very concerning to be separated from anything in my carefully (ha) selected inventory. Also concerning: it took me about 10 minutes to remember the word "inventory".

So far, our itinerary looks something like this:

September 14th: Fly from Seattle to Iceland.
September 15th: Arrive at Keflavik airport early in the morning. Rent a car. Drive around all day until our flight to Paris.
September 16th: Arrive in Paris very early in the morning. Be tired. Brace self for Steve’s nonstop impressions of French people.
Septermber 19th: Leave Paris. Steve goes on to visit his family in England, while I take a train to Strasbourg.
September 19th-21st: Alsace region of France.
September 22nd: Freiburg, Germany
September 23rd: Bus from Freiburg to Munich
Septermber 24th and 25th: Oktoberfest
September 26th: Innsbruck, Austria
September 27th: Meet back up with Steve in Verona, Italy
September 28th: Bolzano, Italy
September 29th: Venice, Italy
Greece! Turkey! Georgia! And so on.

I am really, really looking forward to Greece, Turkey, and Georgia. I've never been to any of those countries and they sound great. Sometime in mid-November, we will be in central Europe before going to England for Christmas. Then, we will hopefully fly to Morocco.

Crossing fingers for no major volcanic eruptions in Iceland!