India, Mumbai

Mumbai’s colours and temples

We arrived in Mumbai during India’s so called ‘bank note crisis’, during which people were queuing all day to get cash out and some even reportedly paid others to wait in line for them. As we were warned about this beforehand, we got rupees out straight upon arrival at the airport. With nobody waiting in line for the cash machine there, nor for immigration, everything ran perfectly smoothly. I even remember asking the immigration officer if ‘that was all’ and him saying yes – but nodding no… This Indian head wobble thing was something I would soon get used to.

My friend Aneree was waiting outside for us, in her car with chauffeur. It was lovely seeing her again; her enthusiasm about showing us the city in which she was born and raised made us feel really welcomed. She had a day full of activities in store for us, but first brought us to our hotel for some refreshments and a meal, which was great after all those long hours of travelling. During the car ride, I started to have the feeling of being part of a movie scene. Everything was so different, so full of colours – from the exotic fruit stands next to the road, to the beautiful traditional dresses the women were wearing. I was hit by a fragrance of local spices from the street shops and vendors who were all around. The roads were filled with cars, busses, motorcycles, cows and people trying to manoeuvre around each other. My ears were beeping from the noise of the many, many honking vehicles trying to find a space in the madness. There are about 22 million people living in Mumbai alone, which is more than all people of the Netherlands put together!

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Dubai, India, Mumbai

Taking off to…

Sometimes you spontaneously think of something fun to do, like ‘hey, let’s go shopping’, or even ‘let’s go online shopping’. Which is exactly how one morning, out of the blue, my mum and I booked us an exotic trip abroad. It was raining outside, we had to cancel our plans for the day, and then… we went online. We stumbled upon a website advertising sunny deals to escape the miserable weather and it was just – so – appealing. Soon I would finish my second masters’ degree and officially say goodbye to the student life and start life as a working lady. In fact there would be only ten days in between my last day at university and the start of my first real job as a therapist, which for me was the perfect excuse for a last minute getaway. Knowing that to really get good sun exposure in January we would have to travel as far as the Canary Islands, not the cheapest destination, we initially laughed the whole idea off. Then another thought popped up. India… exotic land, place of spirituality and relaxation, ideal to recharge before taking on the working lifestyle! India is not exactly around the corner either, bút we reasoned that once we got there, it’d actually be quite affordable to get around. Good thinking right, well hmm… getting there turned out to be easier said than done.

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Brazil

Brazil, chapter 2: lost in the jungle.

Sana is known for being a hippie town in the middle of waterfalls, wildlife and spectacular natural sights. It is located in the mountains of Casimiro de Abreu, about 1.5 hours away from our place in Buzios. At eight in the morning, we were packed and ready to go hiking there for the day, explore the countryside of Brazil and bath in natural pools. We were waiting excitingly outside of our apartment for the tour guide to pick us up.

However, at 8.15 there was still no sight of our tour guide. This wasn’t the first time that someone showed up late during our time in Buzios and my mum assured me that it was just a matter of ‘Brazilian timing’, nothing to be worried about. Secretly I was quite concerned that something had gone wrong with the booking, especially when at 8.30 there was still no tour guide around, but right when we thought it was acceptable to phone up the tourist office without coming across as neurotic Europeans, a car stopped in front of us. A man in a bright pink shirt greeted us and introduced himself as Juliano. It turned out we had a private-chauffeur who would be our guide for the rest of the day!

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Brazil, Uncategorized

Brazil, chapter 1: cultural differences.

Many of you probably know the concept of home-exchanges through the movie ‘The Holiday’, where Kate Winslet and Cameron Diaz decide to swap places: a little cottage in England for a mansion in the USA. This movie happens to be my favourite feel-good movie of all time, and it’s the way my mum and I have been traveling for many years. I love to explore the world by exchanging homes, because you get to ‘live’ somewhere and feel less like a tourist, save a lot of money and often get really great insider tips as a nice bonus! Among many places, we have stayed in a massive house in San Francisco of a former Harvard University law student, a gay couple’s flat in New York, and a large farm in England. Now, we are in Brazil for the next 2.5 weeks living in a house with a swimming pool at a peninsula’s coastline.

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Canada, The Netherlands

The things I miss about Europe while living in Canada + giveaway contest!

I always knew that one day or another, I would move to Canada. When I was as young as 4 years of age- or I should better say as far as my memory goes back – I remember telling everyone over and over again that I would one day live in this country. Six months ago, at the age of 22, I finally went and did it: I made the move to Montréal together with my boyfriend. My time here has been a wonderful experience and absolutely met my expectations (see, the 10 things I will miss most about living in Montreal). However, I have also missed Europe and started to appreciate certain things about it more. In this blog, I will name a few of these things. Also, in this blog post I am holding my first giveaway contest! More info about this at the bottom of the page.

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Boston, Canada, North Hero, quebec, Uncategorized, Vermont

The 10 things I will miss most about living in Montréal

In less than a month, I will be returning to my home country, the Netherlands. Therefore, this is a recap of the 10 things I will miss the most about living in Montréal.

10) My favourite hotspot: the anti-café. This is a place where you pay per minute, rather than per drink. What this means is that you pay 3 dollars for the first hour you are there, and 2 dollars for the following hours (with a maximum of 9$). Basically, during your time at this cafe you can consume as many cups of tea and coffee as you would like, in addition to having unlimited cookies and snacks. If you know me, you know that I drink a crazy amount of tea every day and that I hope to have a huge tea corner in my future dream house. Therefore, this place completely suits me.

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New York, United States

A tribute to New York City

New York,

A city that has captivated me like no other place has ever done before. I started this blog to share with you my experiences and adventures in different places all around the world. As New York has left the biggest stamp on my heart, you will probably see quite a few blogs pass by where I will rant on about all the activities you can undertake in this enchanting city. However, for me to do this, I have to spill it out there; unless you’ve been to NYC, you can’t really give it justice in words to someone. Ouch, that’s a bad start for a blog! Nevertheless, I feel that before writing anything else about NYC, I have to try to explain to you what can’t be explained.

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