It’s a sunny afternoon as we make our descend into Lisbon. I smile at the changing landscape below. We circle over where I assume the river Tagus joins the Atlantic ocean; the sun rays reflecting off the blue waters would make for some good photos but I continue to squint my eyes and watch from the corner of the window. We fly over a reddish suspension bridge that looks a lot familiar and I quickly turn to hubby, who is buried deep into this new book he bought at the airport, to ask him about it. By the time I manage to pull him towards the window, the bridge is far behind and we are flying over red rooftops, colourful houses and what looks like a bustling city spread up, down, and all around small hills. I forget about hubby leaning in to see the view, and unable to resist anymore, I begin to click a few photos excitedly.
Category Archives: Travel
Love Thy Neighbour’s Food
My bowl of pasta looked very tempting! I could smell the garlic and basil from a distance, and couldn’t wait to dig in. Hubby’s creamy ravioli looked as sumptuous but I am more of a tomato sauce fan so, clearly I loved mine more! It tasted even better than its aroma and looks, trust me. By the time we licked the tiramisu off those lovely little dessert jars, we had concluded we ate the best Italian food in a long, long time.
It was perhaps the long walks we took during the day while touring this new city, that added to the flavours in tonight’s dinner, but even half hour later I was certain I had had the best Arrabbiata there! Pizza Pino was inching its way to becoming the delightful discovery of our visit.
Beyond The Wall
We are breezing through the German farmlands, making our way back to the capital after an express trip to Braunschweig for a friend’s wedding. Lazy afternoon, a smooth train ride, sunshine sprawled all around, a weekend away couldn’t be more blissful. I stifle a yawn as I browse through the photos we took the previous evening, while hubby has a city map spread in front of him that he is staring at intently in an attempt to draw out a plan for the next day. I want to jump in and take part but the autumn colours outside and the hangover inside from last night’s party distract me well enough.
I snuggle in my shawl, look out the window thinking of the wedding party. It was such a personal, intimate affair that it left my heart all warm and fuzzy by the end of it! The sawing of the wooden log definitely wasn’t the most delicate of wedding rituals, but then it is a German tradition and there wasn’t much left to wonder! The newly weds’ speeches, the montage and all the toasts, both in German & English were endearing and quite movie-like too. The highlight, of course, was dancing and me DJ-ing every now and then, oh, not in the truest sense of the word but if suggesting peppy Hindi numbers to alternate between the German ones counts, then sure I did a good job of it.
Life Lessons by Lake Windermere
We were almost on our way to Annecy, in France when on a whim we decided to make our celebratory trip more cozy, less travel-intensive, and closer to nature. The last bit is an exaggeration actually, but I will say that the idea of staying by the side of a lake, that is flanked by vast green fields, some fells, forests and small hills was very appealing.
We quickly researched online, rejoiced at those positive reviews and well, before we knew it, we had booked ourselves a relaxing long august weekend in the Lake District of UK!
And now that I’ve sat down to write about it, I realise there isn’t a lot to tell you. Except that, the lake was so serene in the mornings I could see my reflection gazing back at me as pleasantly surprised as I was at first while forming it! Except that, the hotel was so immaculately preserved (since its 17th century origins!) that I was afraid of touching of its richly decorated furniture lest I spoil it, you know. Except that, when it rained all through Saturday night, I sat and listened to the rain drops falling (on my head; remember the song?) on those leaves in the grand verandah there, lit by lamps and candles alone and I lost track of time. Except that, their breakfast spread was so mouth-watering and sumptuous that I could eat it for all three meals happily! Except that, their reading room is what I’d one day like my study to look like, period. Except that, I woke up to sheep in my backyard, calmly nibbling over the lawns until someone softly whistled them out from there. Terrible that I was so lost in the moment I forgot to capture the scene into my phone. Oh, and except that, if you want to spend a leisure (semi)luxurious holiday with your loved one, Lakeside by Lake Windermere in the Lake District is the place to be! I know, too many lakes but trust me once you reach there, you won’t get enough of them.
Leave any holiday planning to me and I will pack the days & nights with so many touristy activities that I may need a holiday to get over my holiday hangover (read more like fatigue!). What can I do! The twitterverse is to blame, you see; with so many beautiful photos and articles all over, I do not want to miss out having gone so close. But, those 3 days by Lake Windermere proved very different. And, it reminded me of something I had read a few months ago: The need for an empty space, a pause, is something we have all felt in our bones; it’s the rest in a piece of music that gives it resonance and shape ~ Pico Iyer (of course, who else!).
So as we wined and dined under the chandelier; as we walked on the morning dew and laughed; as we sat in the sunshine and felt the wind in our hair, I realised it’s good to not rush through the moment in the hope to capture it all, instead to enclose the present moment, to make it stay, to fill it fuller and fuller, until it shone, whole and bright, only to softly let it go and move on to the next moment. In other words, I realised it’s good to slow down every once in a while! To pause; to reflect; to just breathe and be. It is not just healthy for your heart and head, it helps in ways only time can show you and soul can understand.
Have you been to the Lake District? How was your experience, I’d love to hear your versions as much! And if you haven’t paid it a visit, I insist that you do – I know you will love it! There is enough information online about tourism of this area so I won’t bore you with any details. I will say one thing though, keeping 3-4days to soak in the place will be a wise choice.
PHOTO: #ThrowbackThursday To Grindelwald
In the middle of a fine work day, I caught myself amidst avid travellers and popular tweeters talking about their travel styles and likes. It is as good as daydreaming, if not better!
It was the weekly-Wednesday tweet chat hosted by Stuti and Megha with hashtag #MeAndMySuitcase. And it is one of their questions that led me to this post. The question was, ‘what moment changed me from being a tourist to being a traveller?’. And, without a doubt in my mind, it had to be the serene and picturesque valleys of Grindelwald!
The morning walk by the stream, breakfast in the warm sun, to spending the day walking up and down the hills all around, to sipping on coffee listening to the faint music of the cowbells in the evenings while chatting with the hostel in-charge. These were only some of the things that I did during my stay there! It was uplifting to be in the lap of nature, it soothed my soul.
And, this week’s #throwbackthursday post is to the beauty & wonder that lies in Grindelwald!
Plan a visit if you haven’t yet! I insist that you do.
And, if you have been to this beautiful valley in Switzerland, tell me about it! I’d love to hear your stories.