Anyway, back to the blog “series”. I’ve talked about my trips to San Francisco and Italy — so now comes the other two bigger trips abroad that has taught me more than I would have imagined: southern Mexico + Sweden.
After Italy, the usual holidays and gatherings and springtime and weekly roadtrips and everything else that happens in California in springtime proceeded. Soon enough, it was time for my yearly holiday abroad but I had no idea where I’d go. One evening in Los Angeles, I came across this highly-rated restaurant called Guelaguetza on Yelp (the source of all knowledge, obviously). The food was AMAZING. I started researching it obsessively like everything else I do…and the next day, I booked my annual Thanksgiving trip to warm + sunny southern Mexico. Woo! This trip was a bit different though; I wanted to pack as light as possible (and avoid the embarrassment of a rolling suitcase when I was in Italy and had to drag it up 20 flights of stairs over the canals), plus most everyone in the city didn’t speak English — some not even Spanish and only their indigenous languages.
Oaxaca instantly became one of my favorite places in the whole world by the first day. It’s so full of life, so trendy without being a tourist trap, so artistic, so inspiring, so…everything. I’d move to Oaxaca in a heartbeat if I could (and hey, when I come back from Europe, I just might). That trip made me realize that a $10/night bed in a hostel, a few tank tops, and a cheap ride to the local watering hole on the edge of a cliff is all that’s needed to make me happy. I met a lot of interesting people who were a bit different than the typical Euro travelers and they definitely helped inspire me to do some long-term travel.
And then, Sweden! I’ve always loved Stockholm’s allure but never had a desire to venture to Scandinavia. That is, until Norwegian Airlines created a new, direct flight from Los Angeles with an introductory price of $430 RT. I was sold! So when California was celebrating the arrival of Spring, I was on my way to snowy Sweden.
I spent a week and a half traveling through the curvy alleyways on the archipelago of Stockholm’s city center and the sunny streets of Copenhagen, Denmark. The trip was my most expensive to date, but definitely worth every penny to be inspired by Swedish design. That trip really helped define my sense of ‘style’, so to speak. While I was there, my passport + wallet were stolen the night before I was leaving — lots of running around the city and lots of tears occurred, but I made it out alive. I ended up spending St Patrick’s Day in Stockholm and it was my favorite night during the whole trip! Who knew the Swedes loved St Paddy as much as I do? 😉
And now, España!
I’ll have another post about my first week in Spain in a day or two, but so far it’s been great! The terrain in central Spain reminds me of back home in California. I met some friends in Madrid and did a big loop to the southern coast and back for a week; now I’ve settled in Sevilla in the Andalucia region. I don’t want to spoil any surprises, so check back in a few days for a big post. Hasta luego!