Posts Tagged With: traveling

Dear British Airways

Our relationship started a short while back and I had to say that when we first met, Friday a week ago, I was very pleasantly surprised. You made everything so easy and comfortable for me, and when it was time for food, you were thoughtful about my preferences. I was met with smiles and good fun, and I thought to myself that this could be the start of a long lasting relationship.

I even missed you when I had to get a ride from your friend American Airlines for the majority of my way back home yesterday. When I got to Heathrow though, I could see that we were scheduled to be reunited once more, if only for the couple of hours it would take me to get from London to Oslo. I was looking forward to it, I really was!

Then you stood me up. I waited and waited. For hours I sat around, just hoping to at least hear from you. After waiting for what seemed like an eternity, I had to hear from a third party that you were delayed because of some technical issues. That’s okay, shit happens! So I settled myself with a coffee and my book, and kept on waiting. The rumours started spreading throughout Terminal 5 about you standing us up completely, so after reading a couple of chapters I went looking for someone who could give me more information.

It took a while to even find anyone who could actually answer my questions, but when I found that person, I was told that things were very uncertain. The only thing she could tell me for sure was that our date was definitely cancelled. After seven hours of waiting I got in the line (that hardly moved) to get help from your coworkers. I knew that the chances of getting a ride home that day wasn’t going to happen, but at least they would have to help me find a place to sleep, right?

After standing in line for an hour and a half though, a female friend of yours came up to us and told us that standing in that line wouldn’t do any good. All they could do when one got up to the counter was answering questions about rebooking and reimbursement. We would all have to stand in a new looooong line just to be able to get out of the airport, then we’d have to find a place to sleep and try to get in touch with you the next morning.

I was overwhelmed, jet lagged and utterly exhausted. I ended up calling my mom in tears, telling her that I had no idea how or when I would be able to get home to Norway, and even worse I struggled to just find a place to spend the night. I had a mini-breakdown right there in Terminal 5, because I felt so stood up and left out to dry.

You weren’t there and I felt like event though we’d spent some good times together, I no longer mattered to you.

That being said, the friends of yours that I did get in touch with at the airport they tried the best they could to lift my spirit. They gave me the help they could, even though it wasn’t much. And I feel bad for all of them, as well as all of us travellers.

When all of this is settled, I think I’m going to have to reconsider our future relationship.

The fact of the matter is this:

I’m angry and very disappointed. Not for the fact that some power surge ended up with me being stranded in London for who knows how long. Not for the fact that I’m here, and I have no idea where my luggage is. The reason why this is getting to me is the utter and complete lack of communication. There were children all over the airport crying and asking about when they would be able to go on their long awaited holiday. People who’d been away from their family and friends for months, just trying to get home. Old people who couldn’t stand in line for hours just to get information.

I looked around and saw plenty of speakers throughout the airport. Why on earth were we not given any kind of general information through those? Why did we all have to seek out airport staff to get the minimal amount of information that they had been given? Like I said; Shit happens! I get it! You can’t be prepared for everything, but at least help us out when you screw up. Give some kind of information so that people know what they should be doing.

So, what now?

I honestly don’t know much. I stranded in London. Luckily there was an available private room at St. Christopher’s Inn (the hostel I stayed in last time I was in London), so I have a place to stay. They won’t let me get my luggage, so now I have to go and get some clothes and toiletries for today and tomorrow. I can’t get through to British Airways’ customer service line, and they’ve told us to not show up at the airport. The only thing I know is that I won’t get home until earliest tomorrow, but I might have to stay here until Tuesday.

So I’m pretty much stranded, but at least I’m in one of my favorite citys. The sun is out and life is too short to stay mope around, so I’m going to go and lay down with a book in Hyde Park, keep trying to get a hold of British Airways on the phone, and pretend that I’m just still on holiday.

Life is a journey, not a destination, and sometimes the journey takes us on completely different paths than what you expected.

Hope you’re all having a wonderful Sunday!

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Let’s make new memories!

I’m currently at Oslo Airport Gardermoen, having breakfast and doing a bit of writing while I’m waiting for boarding to open. Last time I wrote a post from the same place as now, I was headed to London. This plane is bringing me to London too, but this time around I have a transfer flight for a much longer trip. This time I’m headed to somewhere I haven’t been before to see someone I haven’t seen in a long time!

I’m headed to Austin, Texas!

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It feels like forever since the last time I was onboard a plane, even though it’s only been a little over three months. That urge to travel is just growing and growing, and I’m very excited to finally be back at an airport, knowing that I’m about to head somewhere new. There’s something so utterly special about the airport atmosphere. It’s like you can feel the excitement in the air, radiating from all the other travellers. And that very feeling feeds me with energy and creativity. I write a lot when I’m at home, but the urge to put words onto paper/screen grows so much stronger the minute I’m on the go and surrounded by other adventurers who are headed to all kinds of places!

Traveling with British Airways will be a new experience for me as well (I don’t think I’ve ever traveled with them) and one thing I’m really curious about, is the food they’ll serve. I’ve requested vegan/vegetarian on my flights and from what I’ve heard it’s usually either a hit or miss. Crossing my fingers for a hit!

My camera is along for the ride, and there will be a Texas video up on my YouTube channel when I get home.

Wish you all a wonderful Thursday and hope you get to go on your own adventure, even if it’s just a minor one! Go out there and make some new memories to treasure!

Bon Voyage!

 

Categories: My own writing, Travel, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

London – Short and Sweet

Let me tell you about my short and wonderful trip to London last week! It all started after a night of no sleep (because going to bed at 1-2 is useless when you have to get up at 3.30) and the regular wonderful travel nerves. Left my apartment at 4.15 am with my backpack on and headed for the bus to the airport.

Everything ran as smoothly as it possibly could, and at 7.38 am my Ryanair flight to Stansted was ready for takeoff. Sleep took a hold of me for most of the flight, and even though I love Ryanair for always being on time and having very affordable tickets, I certainly wish that they were easier to sleep on. Who sits with such a straight posture for an entire flight? Luxury problem, I know. I managed to fall in and out of sleep anyways.

A couple of hours later I was on British ground and headed for yet another bus. On previous trips to London I’ve taken the Stansted Express into town, but as I found that the bus was much cheaper, I decided to give that a go instead. The bus was comfortable, had free wifi and was a lot easier to sleep on. So I sneaked in another hour or so of sleep there as well and finally felt rested and ready for a busy day.

It was a rainy and grey London that met me when I got off the bus, but that wasn’t going to wear me down. The reunion was still filled with love and joy. I spent a few hours just walking around the city, soaking in that feeling of being home. The city, the people and the creative vibe of the place makes me walk around smiling like a crazy person.

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After a few hours of walking around and getting lost on purpose, I found a sweet little café where I had some coffee and did some much needed writing. Typing came much easier than it had for quite some time, and I wasn’t at all surprised. Traveling really makes my creativity thrive and I wish I had the time and the money to do much more of it.

A few hours of writing passed by and I really got some good work done on my novel, and then I found my way to St. Christopher’s at the Village, the hostel where I had booked a bed. It was close to London Bridge, so extremely easy to get to and the staff was absolutely wonderful! I got the top bunk in a 33 bed dorm. Connected to the hostel was Belushi’s Bar, a very nice bar with a good atmosphere and cheap drinks for everyone sleeping at the hostel. I ended up sitting there to write for a while before I put my Surface away and ended up having a few beers with an Australian who was also traveling by himself.

I really enjoyed my stay at St. Christopher’s Inn and I will definitely stay there on my next visit as well!

The next morning I had to check out by 10 am. and the fact that I had forgotten to drink water before I got to bed hit me quite hard. Got a good walk in, some food and a coke, and I finally beat the hangover. After that I found my way to Victoria Station, sat there and did some more writing while enjoying a snack, and then it was already time to head back to the airport for my flight home unfortunately.

It was a very short, but much needed trip. I enjoyed every minute of it (well maybe not the short period of time where I felt horribly hungover), and hopefully I will be able to sneak in another one of these writing trips again soon! It does wonders for my creativity and for my happiness! The only downside is that now I just want to travel even more. Bitten by the bug, yet again! But I’m not going to complain about that. The traveling will happen in time, and I feel so lucky to have had the opportunity to experience such a short and sweet experience in a city that I love and have missed.

London baby, I’ll be back soon!

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That Familiar Tug!

It’s grabbing a hold of me every day now. A plane flying by over head, the smell of coffee, that glimpse of sun, hearing foreign languages and watching strangers faces. Pretty much everything I see these days, reminds me of everything I’m missing when it comes to traveling.

I haven’t been away for a proper vacation since my family trip to the US in 2015, and that seems like a lifetime ago! Three of my closest friends and I went on a minicruise to Denmark a few weeks ago, but that just made it even worse. It was like being able to smell the chocolate cake, but not really biting into it!

I find myself going through Airbnb, Couchsurfing, Booking, TripAdvisor and every possible airline company site, and daydream myself away.

By now it actually hurts a bit, that’s how bad I want to go on a new adventure at the moment. The tug wont let go of me, and I’m pretty sure the only solution is to pack my backpack and go out and find one!

But that’s not really an option right now. Work, family and money are just a few things that’s in the way between me and my next trip. But I’m not here to make excuses for myself. I’m here to put the promise out there. The one where I promise myself that I will do everything it takes to go on that writing trip to Amsterdam that I’ve been thinking about for a few years, and I will do it next spring. I want to rent a cheap houseboat, only bring my backpack with clothes and writing supplies, drink red wine and write on deck while the sun goes down!

This is me, making a promise to take myself on a vacation! Soon my dear self, we will be sitting on that plane you see up there! Soon!

 

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Late Night Thoughts and Coffee Cups

For some reason I always end up staying up late, immersed in my own thoughts and creativity whenever I go back home to my parents for a visit. Could be the change of scenery or maybe just the comfort of being on home base that brings out something that’s been tucked away for a while. 

Some of it probably comes from the deep conversations I have with close family and friends when I come around. They bring a lot of subjects and thoughts to the surface that I rarely touch on with other people in my everyday life. This is something that I’m extremely grateful for and definitely always look forward to when I’m going home, but it also makes for a bit of a bitter sweet experience. Late nights of writing and endless coffee refills (not that I need it. I’m pretty much immune to caffeine at this point!) has become sort of a routine. 

Over the past few days I’ve had a mini-vacation back to my hometown just to have some quality time with my family and friends, and to recharge my batteries for the hectic time to come. These last couple of days can definitely be described as interesting. Not that there’s much to tell that would be of any interest to anyone else but me, but the experience in general has just been wonderful. A lot of meaningful conversations, new ideas, reconnected friendships and lots and lots of good coffee. I crave these kind of inputs in my life on a regular basis, to clear my head a bit and to see my life and thoughts from a different perspective. It’s healthy for me, and I think a lot of people could benefit from similar experiences. We all need to step back a little from time to time, to really be able to see where everything is going and to really be able to understand ones needs. We get so caught up in everyday life (nothing wrong with that! We all live it.) that we push away the important thoughts and questions, storing them for a later and “more convenient” time. But the very truth and essence of everyday life is that it is exactly that: YOUR LIFE! It’s not the time that you wait around for life to actually start happening. It’s not the time where everything that goes down is of less significance because the events aren’t huge! It’s the everydays that mounts up to the life that you choose to live. 

I don’t knoe about you guys, but sometimes I need a little reminder of exactly that. And that’s what I love so much about coming home to the important people in my life that I don’t have around me as often as I’d like, in my everyday life. 

So I take the late nights, the deep thinking, the laughter, the crying, the joy, the pain, the tough questions, the light hearted jokes and all the cups of coffee. I take them all with so much gratefulness. Because in my experience, the only ones who takes you on that ride and asks the tough questions (and really listen to your answers as well) are the ones who truly cares about your well-being. Those are the people that I need to recharge and rethink. 

And to you (come on! Don’t pretend you don’t know who you are): 

Thank you! 

I probably don’t say that enough! Thank you! 

  

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I Was Thinking About Hotels

I love staying in hotels!

Some people give me the weirdest look whenever utter this statement and I can understand that. If the person do a whole lot of traveling for work and sleeps more in strange places than at home, then of course it’s not going to be the most exciting of experiences. You’ll grow tired of going from place to place when the only place you might actually want to be is at home between your own sheets.

I on the other hand, don’t get to enjoy hotels as often as the traveling worker, so whenever I do get the chance it really is a fascinating experience. There’s just something so incredibly inspiring in staying somewhere new and different. And especially if the room/hotel has a lot of personality and history. And one of the things I enjoy the most is trying to get a feel of what kind of people that lives there besides me. Their stories, their lives and their next direction of choice as they leave the hotel.

At this very moment I’m sitting in my hotel bed in Gothenburg (away on a little family vacation) and the thoughts are rushing to all the stories and lives that this room (and all the others) are keeping as a secret from everyone else.

I’m sure there’s a whole lot of stuff that I don’t want to know about, but then again there are probably a whole lot of interesting history in every single place that I’ve ever stayed. Stories never told of life, love and loss. Of vacations, work and escape routes.

What if these walls could talk? 

For one thing they might be able to tell me why most of the staff in the restaurant had no sense of good customer service, but that’s not really what I want to hear. I want to know about the people that has stayed here, the ideas that came to life and the relationships that formed or ended. The turning points in people’s lives that suddenly appeared in a strange place away from home.

If the walls would talk to someone in the future, my stay here probably would not make the list of the most interesting tales. It would be the story of a ginger girl who sat in bed and wondered. She wondered about the past, the present and the future. And when the wonder factory got too full of wondering she had to let it out before the factory exploded. So she did what she had to do.

She wrote!

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