My feelings one year ago

Being the extraordinarily nostalgic person that I am, I’ve been overwhelmed with the following thoughts lately. Exactly one year ago, I remember precisely how I was feeling. I worked my last day at my job 2 days ago, and now had 6 full days to complete final preparations for my first round the world trip. My anxiety was through the roof. The below post links to a post I wrote over one year ago – 3 weeks before I left on my trip. My feelings only intensified as the trip got closer. By this time, I had accepted that I made the right decision and excitement was starting to kick in but this doesn’t mean that my anxiety lessened. I was worried about my first major long haul flight (a flight longer than 9 hours) – only because I don’t sleep on planes so I was worried about how exhausted I would be. I was stressed about packing (carry on only! for the first time) because I hadn’t started yet. I was worried about getting Delhi belly and any other strange sicknesses on the road. I was running around like a chicken with its head cut off trying to get everything done and making sure I saw everyone before I left. I was wondering why I only gave myself one week and should I have quit my job sooner to give me more time? Above all, I was so very proud of myself for actually taking the leap to go on such an incredible trip. I was a “real” traveler now and it felt so good.

It’s mad for me to think that’s it’s already been a whole year since I was feeling a crazy amount of emotions at one time. If I could turn back time, I would love to do it all over again – and I wouldn’t change a thing. One year later and I am living in Ireland, a month and a half away from finishing my first year of my Master’s degree. Life is crazy and I love it.

How I was feeling 3 weeks before leaving for my RTW trip

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Rough Start to 2015

I had a rough start to 2015. Let me count the ways…

1) My mum sent me a package one month before Christmas with Christmas gifts inside and very expensive vitamins I take. They can only be purchased in Florida (they help prevent migraines). This package was worth a lot of money. As of today, it is still lost. We think someone stole it. Thanks to this, I’ve been suffering from lots of migraines and headaches lately.

2) I rang in the New Year with a couple good friends. It was such a lovely evening – relaxing, entertaining, good food, great company. Then… I went to get my coat from the cloakroom – and it wasn’t there. Someone stole my coat. Luckily, the manager was very kind and sent me a check so I can replace the coat. I’m not overly upset since luckily it was my least favourite of the ones I own; however, my favourite gloves were in the coat and they are irreplaceable.

New Year's Eve

New Year’s Eve

3) I bought new Nike runners. There was a defect in one of the shoes and it caused an injury to my left foot (in the arch). I was limping and hobbling for 6 weeks. I even went to see a physio therapist. Luckily the pain is starting to subside. I now have 2 injured feet since my right foot still causes me pain from the fracture I endured last May.

Cork

Cork

4) I went to Cork for a visit in January. Cork was my first Irish home and I love it so very very much. I haven’t been since October 2012 so I was overdue for a nice visit. I needed a relaxing escape from Dublin for a few days. I stayed in a B&B for 3 nights and really enjoyed my stay – except for one night. I was woken in the middle of the night with SEVERE upper abdominal pains. This went on for over three hours. I knew I needed antacids (something I’ve never taken before) but there are no 24 hour pharmacies in Ireland. I considered going to the emergency room, but didn’t want to be in a waiting room for hours in such severe pain. I did an internet search and found that there was a 24 hour Tesco (supermarket) a 10 minute drive from my B&B. Funny enough, I had been to that Tesco many times with friends after nights out. I got a taxi there and I told the driver what was going on with me. Since he knew I was in a lot of pain, he pulled into a handicapped spot up front and said “I hope I don’t get into trouble for parking here”. I said “Sure you’re grand, you won’t be here long” and went into Tesco. For whatever reason, I took my time in Tesco. I walked outside and was surprised to see my taxi driver still in the same spot. I opened the door and said “I didn’t think you’d still be here!” and he said “Jayzus!! What took you so long?!” That’s when I noticed the meter was still running. Oh no. He said he thought since I said he wasn’t going to be there long that I wanted him to wait for me. Uhhhh NO! Massive misunderstanding that I can laugh about now. Anyway, I just received the results of my abdominal ultrasound and found out that I have gallstones. Fun times.

Tesco at 4 a.m.

Tesco at 4 a.m.

5) I did my first ever international money transfer – from my Irish bank account to my American bank account. Long story short, it got bounced back (not my fault) and I lost $200 ($60 in fees and the rest due to conversion rates). I am absolutely gutted. Trust me when I say I put up a good fight to get the fees reversed to no avail. I’ve lost over $400 since I arrived in Ireland (lost vitamins in the post and now this bank issue).

6) Warning if you get grossed out easily!: My right big toenail endured major trauma at the end of June on the last night of my round the world trip last year. My best friend and I were a bit intoxicated and we moved her bed (it is on wheels) and ran over my toe. Yes, it was as painful as it sounds. Nearly 8 months later, the toenail was nearly off but wouldn’t come off completely. I just had it removed today, which was quite an experience. I am waiting for the numbness from the injection to wear off and am expecting some pretty severe pain. I no longer have pretty feet 😦

Top of St. Patrick's Hill, Cork

Top of St. Patrick’s Hill, Cork

Having said all of this, it hasn’t all been bad. I am still very much loving every second of living in Ireland and am optimistic things are going to get better. I’m hoping for a positive fresh start in March. Among the good things so far this year:

1) FOOD! Dublin has turned me into a bit of a food snob and I love it. I’ve been really impressed with the restaurants I’ve been discovering. K & I found another delish brunch spot. I’m going to write a “food” post soon with photos.

2) My sister is now in the south of England, which is only a 1 hour flight from here. I am going to visit her in one week for 5 days and am insanely excited!!

3) I got to visit a very dear friend in London. She had an overnight stopover in London Heathrow whilst on her way back home after traveling. We stayed in the unbelievable Sofitel Hotel at Heathrow Terminal 5 and boy was it an experience!! We ordered room service and giggled our way through the evening (as we always do) and then proceeded to have the most incredible breakfast at their restaurant, Vivre, the following morning.

Sofitel Hotel Heathrow

Sofitel Hotel Heathrow

4) St. Paddy’s Day in Dublin – round 2!

5) Holidays this summer – my family is coming to visit in June and I am going on a trip in July. Very, very excited! I need to get planning.