I was sitting at my laptop today planning out my travel schedule for the next few months of bucket list adventures and came to the realization that my husband just may forget my face. I will be putting a photo of me on the bathroom mirror for when he brushes his teeth, just in case.
In the next four months, I will be on 4 different continents, in 5 different countries and dozens of cities. At first glance, this jam packed schedule overwhelmed me with anxiety and then it quickly turned into pure gratitude. I am so incredibly lucky. I truly realize.
This is something I have worked for, for years; a calendar full of amazing adventures while still being able to have financial security by owning a successful restaurant. It has been a labor of love. And a dream come true.
Though, credit has to be given where credit is due.
Many bear hugs, wet kisses and love pats on the butt to my husband who coaxes me to accept every travel opportunity and new experience presented, while he more than willingly holds down the entire fort at our restaurant. Even when I am feeling guilty about leaving him to take on my extra duties, he will say “this is exactly what you have been working so hard for, you can not not go.”
His support has not gone unnoticed. Again, I am lucky.
And, when he does travel with me, he is overly patient about my obsessive photo taking, need to eat weird foods and speed traveling trying to fit in visiting all the strangest attractions I can find. Plus, he will hesitantly eat anything I ask him too. With the exception of drinking snake whiskey in Laos. He passed on that.
Without any further mushy ado, here is how the crazy (& exciting) upcoming months are shaping up
Technically, travel to Toronto was booked to spend time with family that I have not seen in way too many years. But, that doesn’t mean there won’t be some bucket list adventures along the way. Doing the CN Tower Edgewalk, where you hang off the edge of this famous building at 1,168 ft, is at the top of the list. Even though I have been to Niagara Falls before, revisiting this wonder is a must. And I will be getting up close and personal by taking a boat ride next to the falls. Toronto is also known for cutting edge restaurants and two that are on my dining radar are Gusto 101 and Local Kitchen.
photo credit | Beth77
End of July
On my way to Africa (see below) I will be spending a very short layover day in one of my favorite cities in the world, London. And now that I know how to navigate the London tube, I can fit a bunch of exploring into one day. The one thing I know for sure is I want to spend more time at the vibrant Borough Market, sampling all the delicious foods.
From London, it is straight to Tanzania for an African safari with Shadows of Africa tours. I am going to AFRICA! We will be experiencing Lake Manyara, Serengeti and Ngorongoro with the buffalo, zebras, black rhinos, tree climbing lions and thousands of flamingos. And, to top it all off, we are spending a day volunteering at Kibowa Orphanage.
In August, Peter and I are off to Tokyo, Japan to immerse ourselves in the local culture. Seeing a traditional Sumo wrestling match, eating at a restaurant that looks like a prison and buying something unique from a vending machine are all on the agenda. Plus, a whole lot more!
RELATED: Tokyo Bucket List: 44 Top Things To Do in Japan’s Coolest City
Straight from Tokyo, Peter will be heading back to our restaurant to make sure it is still standing and I will be moving on to Palau, Micronesia with Palau Visitors Authority. Palau is an island country located in the Western Pacific Ocean and known for it’s amazing snorkeling. The itinerary is not complete for this trip yet, but I do know that a swim through Jellyfish Lake with thousands of harmless jellyfish will be happening.
Boise/Sun Valley, Idaho
After returning from swimming with the jellyfish in Palau, I will be going on a food lovers frenzy to Boise and Sun Valley. Here we will be doing a restaurant walk, visiting a Kobe Ranch Farm, tasting numerous wines and attending the Sun Valley Harvest Festival.
In October, I am heading to Shreveport to attend the North American Travel Writers Association (NATJA) conference. Mostly for the chance to hear actor Andrew McCarthy speak about his travels and learn to fly fish!
This schedule takes me through mid October when I will be taking a much needed break at home in Northern California. I say that knowing full well that I simply can not pass up an amazing opportunity. So, there may not be a break at all.