Friday, 22 January 2016

Home. (+ Travel Bucket List)

Once in a blue moon, my mood and the weather align. Sometimes, I'll look outside and see rain, and be reassured that everyone - even the weather - has bad days. 

As I mentioned in my first Isle of Mull post, I really like the rain. My sister is all set to emigrate to Australia this summer, but I can't think of anything worse. I love the feeling of wrapping up warm and still feeling a chill in the air. What can I say, I'm weird.

Having recently moved back to the area where I grew up, I am again surrounded by areas and locations that make me feel 'safe', for lack of a better word. I often have difficulty with new places, so being back in the place where I've spent the majority of my life feels so comfortable. It's especially helpful on days where you wake up and just feel 'off'. 

I grew up in the very north of Edinburgh, near an area called Newhaven. Newhaven was a fishing village, and was even involved in the whaling industry (hence one of the streets being named Whale Brae). It was also the scene of some early Victorian photography, with pioneers Hill and Adamson producing over 100 photographs of the fishermen and fishwives from the area. These photos really bring to life what Newhaven would have been like at it's peak, and it's really interesting to compare the Victorian version to the one I call home. 

(On a sidenote, one of my Victorian-era relatives was involved in the development of a much faster method of processing photography, using Hill and Adamson's negatives to essentially help develop mass production of photos. Pretty cool.)

Newhaven has a lot of memories for me, particularly of my teenage years. Both my primary and high schools are pretty nearby, and one of my best friends lived along the sea front, so we spent a lot of time here. This area has some cute little streets with traditional fishing cottages; they have an outdoor set of stairs leading up to the first floor, where the actual accomodation was. The ground floor of these buildings was used to house fishing equipment, such as nets.

Today was grey and overcast and just miserable frankly, and I felt kind of the same way myself. I know it's not that attractive to admit that you feel shit, but it happens. And when it does, I like to be by the sea. Occasionally you'll come down to Newhaven harbour and be greeted by the most beautiful sunset you've ever seen, but today I could barely see across the Forth to Fife. So I just gazed at all the boats bobbing about, and thought of all the places I would go if I had the opportunity. I think it's kind of healthy to go somewhere peaceful and pretty (when you can see it...!) and just take the time to be self-absorbed and in your own head. The expanse of water makes me feel small and insignificant, in a good way. Plus the fresh air does wonders, and pretty quickly nothing seems as bad as you think it is when you're stuck in your room.  

While pontificating down by the water, I came up with a few ideas of places I'm determined to visit in my lifetime, so I thought I'd share my travel bucket list with you.

New Orleans, Louisiana - number one on my bucket list. Looks like the most fun in the world.
New York City, New York - one of those places that everyone should probably go see!
Seattle, Washington - 90s grunge has a special place in my heart. I'd like to see it's hometown.
San Francisco, California - I'm not an LA type, but I think San Fran could suit me well.
Honolulu, Hawaii - looks so beautiful, and so different from the rest of the U.S.
Tromsø, Norway - inspired by my brother, Jamie, who's just returned from here. He saw the Northern Lights, which is a bit of a life goal for me.
Munich, Germany - Bavaria looks amazing, and plus - Oktoberfest.
Dubrovnik, Croatia - feels a bit like the current 'in' holiday, but it is stunning to look at, and I'd like to take a day trip up to the Blue and Green Caves near Split.
Santorini, Greece - a stunning town perched on the cliffside. Makes me feel summery just thinking about it.
Machu Picchu, Peru - essentially a Wonder of the World. Pretty sure it would leave me speechless.
Angkor Wat, Cambodia - as above, something so completely unlike anything I've ever seen.
Budapest, Hungary - I admit it, I want to sit in the thermal baths. 
Kyoto, Japan - a completely different culture, and so many temples and shrines to explore.
Milan & Venice, Italy - from my limited travels, Italy has been my favourite country. These two cities look so beautiful, I'm desperate to go.
Sark, Channel Islands - clear of light pollution, so sure to see some gorgeous night skies. Plus it's a bit of an unusual choice.
Santiago, Chile - being in a city where you're able to see the snow capped peaks of the Andes? Yes please.
The Maldives - I mean, I know I said I like rain, but everyone enjoys a tropical island right?
Borneo - again inspired by Jamie. The wildlife looks amazing and I'd love to go to a rainforest.
Milford Sound, New Zealand - this legit doesn't even look real.
Geneva, Switzerland - pricey, but so pretty.
Reykjavik, Iceland - geothermal areas, whale watching and another Aurora Borealis hot spot.
There's quite a lot on there, and it's likely to change, but that's my current travel bucket list for you! Have you been to any of these places? What did you think? And what's on your travel bucket list? Let me know!


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