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Adventures ahoy!

View Europe 2023 on AvrilAbroad's travel map.

Well, here we are, on the cusp of our next adventure! Specifically: a 6-week European jaunt that will find us in Portugal for three weeks, Corsica for the next two, and finishing up with a week in Paris.

It's a bit of a carpe diem trip, as I'll be celebrating a big birthday, Avi has a few years on me, and as one of our friends put it recently, "Some people our age are old." (Not us, obviously, but let's just say that no one has carded either of us at the liquor store recently.) I mean, technically, it's always carpe diem time because you really never know what's around the corner or how long you've got. But as the years tick past, that concept becomes less theoretical and more real. So I'm obeying the dictate of my favourite pair of socks, and carpe-ing the #$*& out of this diem.


Avi and I are also celebrating 10 years together, which is certainly something to celebrate. And what better way to celebrate than to do something we both love, i.e. travel somewhere wonderful? We discovered on our first trip (France, 2014) that we travel very well together. We have a similar approach to travel, a similar pace, and similar interests, with just enough difference to make things interesting. Avi, for example, loves to spend full days baking on a beach, which my redhead skin doesn't like at all, at all. I, on the other hand, will spend cheerful hours photographing an interesting crack in the pavement from a variety of angles and trying out a variety of techniques, which Avi bears with great patience, but … y'know, there's a limit to everything. So we compromise. It works well. Sometimes unexpectedly well – and fortunately, we're both attuned to the pleasures of the unexpected. (And when the unexpected isn't pleasant, we figure out how to endure it, and hopefully laugh about it later.)

This particular trip hinged around a family wedding in Paris in late October. A lot of Avi's family will be there, so we wanted to be there too. The next questions were: (1) Where else do we want to go? and (2) How long do we want to go for? Well, if we're going all the way across the ocean, we wanted to give ourselves a good long vacation, and 6 weeks seemed like enough time to enjoy some slow travel while still seeing quite a lot. But where? Well, when Avi asked me where in Europe I most wanted to go, I immediately said "Portugal." Everyone I know who has been there loved it, and everything I've read about it sounded gorgeous. Avi has been there before, but there were plenty of parts of the country he didn't visit the first time, so he was like, "Right. Portugal it is. Where else?" We looked at a map of Europe and considered a variety of possibilities (a road trip through all the B-list countries you never think of going to?), but my eye kept being drawn to Corsica and Sardinia. I love Corsican music, some members of my choir had been there earlier this summer, and the two islands seemed just enough off the beaten path (at least for North American tourists) to be interesting, so we decided that's where we'd spend the following two weeks. And then we dropped Sardinia so we could savour a full two weeks in Corsica.

I'm hoping that setting up this travel blog will inspire me to actually write in it from time to time. I'm lazy about writing – and anyway, who wants to attach themselves to a screen when they could be out exploring? But I also know that I've taken great pleasure from rereading my travel diaries over the years, and will probably regret it if I don't keep some kind of written account of this trip. And I'm more likely to be accountable if I think other people are reading what I write. (Why is it so much easier to be accountable to others than to myself, I ask?) Plus I'm hoping Avi will join me and write some entries of his own, and his travel stories are always highly entertaining. In any case I will certainly post photos, even when I don't have much else to say!

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Next up: Lisbon!

Posted by AvrilAbroad 23:30 Archived in Portugal

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