Travel Rant: The Moments After Travel

Returning home is always as terrible and as exciting. After being away for a week or two your own country seems so different than before leaving. Safe and sound. You know all the streets and understand what people are saying. You know how to act, how to fit in. It is easy and for the first few days that makes going back home so amazing. After surviving somewhere else being back at home is like relaxation that holiday should have given for you.

However after those few days coming home excitement disappears. You are back at home. Nothing has changed. Everything is exactly same as before you left. So many things have changed inside of you but no one seems to realize. Your family keeps doing normal stuff, friends keep asking photos from your trip and neighbors probably didn’t even know that you were away. In the end you are left standing there feeling odd. It is like this city, this country, these same old circles aren’t enough anymore. You need something different.

You need new streets, new cities, new places to explore. You want to taste foods you have never seen before and that will probably make you regret later even looking towards them. You grave for new interesting people who can teach you so much about cultures and countries you have only read from school textbooks. You need adventure. In your heart is traveler who just wants to see as much as possible because our time in this planet is limited.

Watching all the photos you have taken and going back to all the new memories you have collected, just makes everything worse. “I would still be there…” If you just hadn’t taken the flight back. If you just had decided to escape your life. If miracle had happened and you would do whatever you want with your life. But then again, if you didn’t return back to home every now and then would this traveling thing feel as good? Would every new experience be as exciting as right now if you knew that you could have them endlessly whenever you want? Who knows…

Right now all we can do is to try to survive this after travel blues. Enjoy the few days back at home and then start planning new trip for another adventure. Because we are travelers and that’s what we do. Endless cycle of planning trips, traveling to new places and coming back.

 

Travel Rants are my series of random travel related thoughts and opinions. It is non-edited thoughts straight from my brain and heart. I just returned from my Bremen London trip so it was good timing to bring this post series back. Like always all comments are welcome! Have you ever felt like this? Or how do you cope with after travel blues?

I hope you are having amazing day!
With love,

Viivi Severina

(Not so helpful) Flight Booking Guide

This Wanderlust Wednesday, I wanted to try something new. So here is post I wrote yesterday (totally not during my political economy class…).

Many people are wondering how to book the flight tickets like traveler. In fact some of my most popular posts that get new comments often are about travelling cheap and adventuring like traveler not tourist. Whatever that “like traveler” means here is my 5 levels of booking tickets. This works for me but please don’t take anything seriously and maybe listen someone more experienced than me. I hope you will enjoy!


5. The art of decising your destination

Deciding where you want to go seems like good way of starting trip planning and flight booking. This is a lie! Be adventurous and leave deciding for those who just want safe boring holiday. Throw dart to world map and go where it points. Or look the flight deals and take cheap one. Where ever you there is amazing adventures coming to your way.

 

plane_tickets
Photos from: unsplash.com

4. Three months before your trip and other tricks

There is as many secret tricks as there is people. Some say that best time to book your flight tickets is three months before your trip. Others swear for the only buy your tickets on Tuesday rule. I have never really thought these. Usually I am too late for that three months mark and who has time to wait for Tuesday when wanderlust is taking over your life!

So is there any tricks I have learned? Making my travel route complicated. Did you know that cheapest round trip flight tickets from Finland to France cost 120€ while from Stockholm to France it costs only 35€ (and it takes 30€ from Finland to Stockholm and back). So you see why I love this ‘trick’? Other one I have learned is collecting airline points.

 

airplane

 

3. Panic, be unproductive and plan like a pro

The most important part of any travel planning is the panicking stage. Walk circles in your home and think all the negative things this trip may cause. Never forget considering airplanes falling or your luggage disappearing. After panicking enough it’s time to stare guide books without doing any real planning. This may take hours, days, weeks or even months. In hopeless cases even years.

After getting over your insecurities it’s time to start the real planning. What time do you want to travel, how to get to airport and from airport to the city?

 

 

2. Time to buy the tickets

It’s finally time to buy the tickets! Go on the right web site (I prefer to buy straight from the airline websites.It’s usually cheaper.), select your flights and use your beloved money to buy the tickets. That’s it really. The most important (only important) part of buying your tickets part. Don’t consider or get scared, just buy.

 

airport

1. Share the good news with world (after panicking some more)

Again time to panic! You have flight tickets so it is real now: you are going to travel somewhere. If you are like me you probably forgot the plan properly ahead part and are now in totally phase of panicking. Don’t worry it will pass quickly.

After panicking it is time to take the next step (also known as the “make all your social media friends jealous”). Yep, it’s time to tell everyone that you are going. I recommend leaving that make everyone jealous part out of this step but I know how it feels to be excited about your new flight tickets. So smile for the camera and put nice photo to Facebook telling everyone the cool destination you will soon head to.

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I hope you liked my not so helpful tips that will probably make your flight tickets booking experience horrible. For me this works but I am that person who has to fail to win.

Do you have any bad flight ticket booking tips? Or maybe good ones that would be helpful for everyone? Like always feel free to comment whatever you have in mind?

So did you like this kind of ‘not so official’ travel post?
I hope you are all having an amazing day!
With love,

Viivi Severina

 

Travel Rant: Insane Courage

 

I’m addicted to getting lost.

Walking unknown paths, not having map, getting scared of unfamiliar streets.

Some people would say I am crazy. And maybe that is why I keep most of my lost adventures secret from my loved ones. Traveling alone as twenty something girl looking all lost in country you have never visited before. Crazy? For me not.

It’s living. Having the feeling of something. Finding new places you would have never seen if you hadn’t taken the step towards scary and uncertain. Meeting people you would have never believed to know and finding unexpected friendships.

I used to live safely and never take the risks. My life was miserable and I didn’t know what was wrong with me. One quote changed my life. A couple of sentences that I chant in my head if I feel like going back to my safe but grim life.

“You know, sometimes all you need is twenty seconds of insane courage. Just literally twenty seconds of embarrassing bravery. And I promise you, something great will come of it.” -Benjamin Mee, We Bought a Zoo

It took me twenty seconds to book my first three months solo trip to Japan.It took me twenty seconds to say yes when I was asked to come and visit people I didn’t even know properly to France. Twenty seconds insane courage to talk with stranger in train. (Later on because of her I got to see the local side of Tokyo.)

So when I go and don’t look my map. When I don’t know where I am or where should I go. I count the twenty seconds and follow the first idea coming to my mind. And then I go. Maybe I open the door of closest shop or take the small dirty looking back alley. I may be stupid doing it. I may even end up being scared for my life and safety. But never do I regret those twenty seconds.

insane

I hope you will remember this later on in your life. Some decisions don’t need thorough thinking but bravery. Now ask yourself what you want to do with your life. 20 seconds what comes to your mind? For me it’s to travel and if you are reading my blog I bet for you it’s too. So another 20 seconds, don’t think too much and make your life your own.

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I have been busy lately and got thrown to totally new environment without warning. So I thought this text was fitting one for me to publish now. It has been on my drafts folder for ages and I just haven’t found the right time for it to appear in my blog. No I needed reminder of that 20 seconds. It really helps.

With love,

Viivi Severina

Fushimi Inari Taisha

It’s time for first Wanderlust Wednesday! This is new blogging series that will have new post every Wednesday in my blog. (This is mostly for me to keep writing something every week… But don’t worry! I will still publish a lot of travel articles in other days too.)

The idea of this series is to recommend places for everyone to visit at least once in their life time. Kind of like bucketlist but destinations I have experienced and loved. The topics will be everything from countries to small attractions and even cozy accommodations. So follow my blog if you want more inspiration to travel!

Today I’m going to introduce one of my favorite places in whole world. If I could only do one trip before dying I would probably decide to go here. This place is beautiful, calming and full of secret trails. It’s full of tourists but also locals. So what place am I talking about?

Magical Forest Kyoto Torii

Fushimi Inari Taisha

Other names: Fushimi Inari shrine, Mt. Inari, Mount Inari

Where? Kyoto, Japan

How to get there? I always walked because my hostel was only two kilometers from the entrance (and I had a lot of time). You can also use train. It takes about 5min and costs 140 yen.

When to go? Fushimi Inari is always open. I loved the autumn leaves but don’t know about other seasons. I recommend going on early evening and walking to the top when it is still bright. Then stop at the observation/restaurant spot and admire the sun setting over Kyoto. (PS. At dark the place is scary but magical.)

How much does it cost? Totally free! Just remember take water and snacks with you because the ones they sell are pricey. And you may end up buying souvenirs from here or crave for ice cream on your way to the top. So you should budget some money to do that.

Why to go?

If I should persuade someone to visit Mt. Inari I would just show them some photos of the Torii gates covering all the paths up. Why I fell in love with this place, is a much difficult matter. So let me tell you one of the many tales from my visits to Mount Inari.

torii

My Story (To Get You Visit This Beautiful Place)

It was my second time on the top of Mt. Inari and it was starting to get dark. I knew the sun would be down before I would get back down. Fortunately the main trails have street lights so it was only a little scary to walk.

I was only one in sight but was able to hear other hikers somewhere far away. Everything glowed in green and red lights and big shadows came out of the shrines I walked past. There were no humans but several cats kept following me. If I tried to approach them they would run away and disappear to the darkness but soon after another cat would follow me again.

I was almost back to the main shrine and bottom of the mountain. There was more and more people around me, mainly locals at this hour. The cats were long gone because of all the talking, laughing and screaming. It didn’t seem so scary anymore. Then I decided to do something crazy that would either end up being catastrophe or once in life time experience.

fushimi_inari

There was small trail with weaker lights going steeply uphill and away from the way I was going. It took only seconds from me to decide and start walking there away from all the people. After me followed one family and two Japanese boys. We kept walking towards darkening forest and soon the family turned back because it seemed like this path would not go anywhere.

Then with flames that looked real fire lighted shrine came to our view. The boys behind me were laughing and having fun and probably wondering what I did here. I totally fell in love with the small shrine. Only for that my walk would have been worth it. The boys decided to walk ahead when I still admired the cozy shrine.

I had to do another bad decision. To walk more or to return back. The path going on didn’t have lights anymore. The forest was getting more and more dense and the only light I saw ahead was the phones of the two boys walking. Of course I decided to walk to the darkness.

I saw the boys turning and starting to walk towards me. I though maybe they decided it was too scary to go on. For me this trip was all about winning my fears so I took my phone and lighted  it up. At that point the boys realized I -the foreigner lost looking girl- had decided to walk more. They quickly turned and continued to walk towards.

japani 146

Maybe it would have been embarrassing for them to turn back if I was going on? Well, whatever the reason was they kept walking and I kept walking. Sometimes their light would get lost behind the trees and at those moments the darkness surrounded me. Scary.

After a long walk I saw light getting closer and closer after every step. Soon the two boys walked towards me, said soft hellos when going past me and continued laughing and talking. I decided to continue towards the light even if it meant I would now be totally alone in the forest.

fushimi_inari_taishaThe light ended up being yet another shrine and small waterfall. My night walk was becoming more and more worth the scared feelings. I think this was one of the most beautiful and peaceful sights I have seen. There is no words to describe the beauty I saw and unfortunately no photos because of the darkness. But maybe that is just a good thing so I was able to fully enjoy the moment.

So then I walked back the dark forest path and didn’t feel that scared anymore. I got safely back to the hostel and have now memory to last forever. I hope I can return here one day in the future… I returned to that exact spot later on but when it was sunny and warm. In day light it wasn’t as magical but still beautiful.

kyoto_sunset

This was my small story from Fushimi Inari. I would have hundreds of them to tell but we don’t have time for that. So instead I will just say that you should go and experience it by yourself.

Did I wake your wanderlust? Have you ever visited Fushimi Inari or is it already on your bucket list? I hope you enjoyed today’s subject.

With Love,

Viivi Severina

Travel Rant: Being Scared

Once upon a time social phobic, shy and scared of everything girl decided to go and travel the world. Everyone though she wouldn’t do it, even the girl herself. But now year later she is here writing for you and wanting to share one message she has leaned.

Never let your fears take over your want to live.

Everyone is scared of something but I have seen that usually the ones being scared of leaving are the ones needing it the most. At least that was the case with me…

Traveling may seem dangerous for someone never been outside of their comfort zone. You will always hear about the dangers on world. Robbers, rape and terrorists. Getting lost, conned or not fitting in. Everything familiar at home transforms scary when in new place. Going to see the world is like deadly affair with your dreams.

The reality is different from our scared imagination. On my travels I have met the most kind people. If I am lost someone is always helpful to walk me back to my hostel. If you use your common sense getting conned isn’t problem. There is always someone who will make you feel like in home.

Show the people who are not believing in you that everything is possible. Small town girl can survive alone in the big dangerous cities. Nothing can stop us if we just try our hardest.

So go and travel despite your fears. Trust me those who fear traveling the most should do it as soon as possible. It will open your eyes and heart. It will make you braver than you ever though you would become. 

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So this was “travel rant”. Me talking about random things concerning travels. Did you like it? Well, I will probably write more of them even if you don’t want so I’m sorry for that. I’m still asking: do you want more of these kind of writings or should I just stick with the travel stories?

With love,

Viivi Severina