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Frequently Asked Questions about Travel Abroad.

Me in Bergamo

Over the last few months, there have been a number of unexpected trips that have taken place, and I’m looking forward to going someplace I’ve been meaning to go for as long as I can remember in the next few weeks. My last trip abroad was about a year ago, so my travel finesse has gotten a little rusty since then.

While planning my next trip, some important items came to my mind that I seem to have forgotten. I wrote down my Top 15 Questions right away when I started planning for my next vacation abroad.

  1. Will there be a language barrier?
  2. Is early check-in possible?
  3. How far is the main attraction from my accommodation?
  4. Is taxi or Uber available?
  5. Are there any public holidays happening during the days I plan to visit?
  6. Where are the nearest public restrooms?
  7. Where is the nearest airport?
  8. Are there cheaper airports to fly into? Is it worth it?
  9. Is the place safe for solo travelers?
  10. Things to do besides the obvious? What about when it rains?
  11. What time are the regular business hours of operation in this city?
  12. Do I need a visa?
  13. What are the must see places or attractions?
  14. Do I need a voltage converter?
  15. What’s the currency difference?
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A Personal Defining Moments

France Selfie

As 2017 is coming to an end, I reflected on my year and honestly, I am glad to be moving on. I realized nothing will ever beat my 2016 when I lived abroad. It taught me everything that I know I will never learn if I never took that leap. If circumstances allow it and I was given the chance to move abroad again, I wouldn’t hesitate to go. Continue reading “A Personal Defining Moments”

You know you’re back in Southern California after a year abroad when…

Driving

1. You wake up every morning with the sun shining.
2. Your common wardrobe changes to shorts, t-shirts, and flip-flops.
3. You work around your schedule base on traffic.
4. You think twice before you jaywalk anywhere or pay a hefty price for a ticket. No thanks!
5. You get carded or asked if I’m over 21. lol! No one ever asks this in Europe.
6. You can no longer drink in public! (A standard law in California but, it seems much stricter in So. Cal.)
7. You have to properly wait in line. No more cutting like I can in Europe.
8. Everything is in large portions in terms of food. Should I get half or a full meal? small or regular coffee? (like anywhere in U.S. the food portions are large in general compare to Europe.)
9. You have to pay for taxes and tips. (anywhere in U.S.)
10. You drive around and notice the business market is growing like crazy. Good news for the job market and for the unemployed 😉

Milan Apartments – Part 3

I’m moving again. Yes, believe it. Saying I have the worst of luck with accommodation in Milan is an understatement. In contrary, there are upsides to the apartment I’m currently staying in. For one it is better than the previous one in terms of the building condition, it has a balcony with a view, it’s in a fairly good location and it contains everything I need (stove, bathroom, room & utilities included with the rent).

The issue at hand is the fact that my new roommate is an early riser and I mean he wakes up at 3am to go to work. Why he mentioned this the day before I moved in is beyond me. I assumed I could get through it because I thought, hey, I only have a few months left here. I could save money and it’s still within walking distance to my work. I was dead wrong! Continue reading “Milan Apartments – Part 3”

Milan Apartments – Part 2

I moved. The apartment I’ve been living in for a year in Milan was something I found on the internet through a housing agency while I was still in L.A. They were one of the few agencies that offered housing online and I didn’t have much choice because I needed a place before I came to Milan. Now, I would say that if I could bypass going through a housing agency in Milan, I would.  Continue reading “Milan Apartments – Part 2”

Beating the Heat in Europe

Coming from Los Angeles, you’d think I’m used to the heat in Europe. I was dead wrong. The heat here is as brutal as it is in the valley of So. Cal. You see, I’ve always been near the beach or close enough to get some sort of ocean breeze. If that wasn’t enough, my a/c in the car spoiled me rotten. Overall, I’ve always managed to avoid being in the heat. Continue reading “Beating the Heat in Europe”

A Moment of Reflection

Milan

As I am uploading photos and videos of my recent trips, I can’t help but smile. I am truly happy where I am. No matter how crazy things can get, I think being here put me in a state of where I feel the most comfortable in. Believe me, there are days where I wanted to give up and let things go that maybe it would change the situation. I’m happy I didn’t do that. It would’ve led me with full of regrets.

Imagine going through life without all of the memories I’ve built from that time to now? It wouldn’t have existed if I left. Crazy! This led me to reflect and think why is it that when we are in that negative state of mine, do we let ourselves be a victim? As if, happiness is unattainable?

I remembered before moving to Europe, I was laid off from my job. I was devastated! I never imagined in my life it would happen to me. After that event I went on a depression mode, my life was in a whirlwind and I didn’t know what to do with myself after that experience. The worst part of that situation for me was the fact that I let negativity consume me to a point of loosing myself and loosing control of my world. Was it all worth it? And for what?  Today, I simply can say no. It was not worth sabotaging myself. It was a point in my life that I overcame and that I wouldn’t want to repeat again.

I guess what I’m trying to get at is that life will always take you in different twists and turns. To me, it’s a matter of how one handles the situation and remembering oneself what you value most in life. That is what keeps me going. What about you? What keeps you going?