They say Germany is a nation of engineers and poets. Sometimes their way with words catches me off guard. Yesterday, my future mother-in-law told me “I admire the way you go naked on the floor”. I guess I have some explaining to do. What she was meaning is that I walk bare foot around the house. Even in winter I have never been a fan of slippers. I can’t explain why, I just don’t like them. Germans on the other hand, make “house shoes” a religious activity. What about you? Am I the only one that goes naked on the floor?
Okay, so I’ve been away from my blog for a few months, and i do have a great excuse….. I promise. In the next month I will share some amazing experiences in Berlin, St. Petersburg, London, Frankfurt, and Stockholm, but today I want to write about something a little different.
I have discovered that travelling can often have the most unexpected results. I’ve just finished writing my first 70000 word novel. An adventure/ mystery based around a woman who loses her husband, is forced to flee her country, and searches for the truth behind a list codenamed Flashlight. The book is jam packed with interesting locations that I have visited in the last three years, and a few places such as Istanbul, which I would still love to visit.
How has travelling influenced your creativity?
Well, I’m back in Germany after an amazing visit with family and friends in Australia. …and of course, the highlight of being back in Europe during October is the wonderful colours of Autumn. I grew up Queensland, Australia, so we don’t have any of the winter trees like Europe. I hope you enjoy these few photos.
I’m sitting at the Abu Dhabi airport waiting for a flight to Australia and this is my first attempt at using the WP app to blog using my iPhone. (Insert Applause)
On my last flight, apart from listening to a beautiful German singer named Franziska, I was reflecting on the wonderful weekend i had visiting 3 castles in Southern Germany, each relating to King Ludwig II.
My favourite castle was Linderhof (pictured above), in which the King lived 8 years. As i walked around the magnificent courtyard, I couldn’t stop thinking about this very impressive King and his struggle with depression. Apparently in later years he withdrew completely into his own imagination, prompting the government of his day to declare him insane.
The second castle we saw was Neuschwanstein, an idealistic architecture of Ludwig’s imagination. History might call King Ludwig II crazy, but Walt Disney was inspired by his castle design, and is remembered as an inspiring dreamer.
Can imagination really become a destructive force? What are your thoughts?
Yes, you read that headline right, I did say “cemetery”, and please forgive me if you were expecting a ghostly tale. I have just returned from another wonderful visit to Bayern in the South of Germany. On this trip I was amazed by something totally unexpected. As we entered the cemetery where my girlfriends father was buried, I was captured by the beauty, color, and serenity of the place. Here’s my description:
- birds singing loudly
- large beautiful trees
- bright green hedges
- flowers, flowers, flowers
- candles and sunshine
- neatly trimmed grave sites
In Australia, people might visit the grave of a loved one on the first anniversary, but here in Germany the grave sites are regularly visited and carefully manicured by relatives. I tried describing what an Australian cemetery looked like, and both my girlfriend and her mother looked at me in shock.
I wonder what other surprises Germany has for me. Do you have a story about a cemetery you have visited?
I woke up this morning and was shocked at how much of my life now revolves around travel. A quick count of apps on my iPhone revealed that 41 were related to travel. I regularly delete apps I haven’t used for awhile, so who knows how many more I have downloaded in the last year. The photo below shows a small selection of the apps I used during my last trip to Australia, Malaysia and back to Germany.
I also estimate that I spend at least 10 hours a week using these apps to learn language, research flights, and plan future trips. I spend another couple of hours a week uploading my travel photos to Facebook…. because we all want our friends to see us enjoying life…right?
So as I reflect on how different my day to day life is now, compared to just a few years ago, I am grateful for the way that travel has enriched my life. I have a much more bigger perspective on world events than the lounge chair critics, my mental muscles have grown as I embrace the challenge of learning new languages, I appreciate the beauty that I see around me each day, I live much more in the now and spend less days fantasizing about the future.
How has travel changed your life? Would you like to do more travelling but feel limited by work, family, or money?