Well, as I sit here tonight I feel like some sort of massive cockwomble. I’m staring up at the map in my study with all the little pins of where I’ve been. I can’t decide where next to travel. Yeah, these are really first world problems!
Now, the problem isn’t lack of funds. Luckily I won some money in a photo competition earlier in the year. The problem is indecision! I’m sat here looking at the map wondering where to go next.
I see that I haven’t done mainland Portugal, just the Island of Madeira. I’ve only done the north of Italy. And I’ve not done Greece at all. Ukraine is out until it resolves its current problems, by that I mean my map still has the Sevastopol peninsular beeing Ukraine green.
Don’t worry, my map is not that old. Half the world is not in pink because of the hideous practice by the British Empire of stealing everything by force of arms. It’s not got the USSR instead of the Russian Federation on. Burma is actually my Myanmar on this map. So, we’ve actually established my map is, give or take 10 years, in date.
I’m toying with France. The reasons for this are numerous. Whatever faults the French have, and they are almost as numerous as the faults of the British, winemaking is not one of them. There are so many good wine regions in France and even those are not renowned for winemaking always do a little something. Paris is less than an hour away on the plane. Should I just fly to Paris, jump on a train and head to rural France? I’ve explored, thanks to family, a lot of southern France, especially Bordeaux and the Aquitaine region. But mid-France has not really been on my radar. Should I change that?
Earlier, I mentioned Greece. Should I hit the Greek islands? Obviously not the club scene, I should be clubbed, not go clubbing, I’m that old! But the history of Greece, now that is something worth seeing, in my opinion. That being said, it’s the same in Turkey. They’ve got some fantastic ruins and therefore another ruin walking amongst it would not cause comment?
But if we are going to ruins, why not head to the North African coast in Libya. They’ve got some amazing ruins, a lot of old Roman civilisation. But, and it’s a butt the size of a small country, it’s not the most stable of places at the moment.
I was about to launch into a whole diatribe of how perhaps removing a dictator from a country invites instability. Like we saw in Iraq. In Libya, the same has happened there. Once Gaddafi was overthrown did things get safer? No, but, it has opened the country to democracy. But even that’s a double-edged sword, with so many factions fighting in Libya it’s probably not the safest place to go.
While we’re talking about the North African coast you’ll notice on my map eejit has opinion.
(Okay, this might make you laugh, but then again it might not. I’m a two-finger typist and therefore I use in Dragon NaturallySpeaking, what I am about to do is take a screenshot of this dictation. But sometimes it gets it so wrong, you’ll notice at the top of the paragraph, I meant to say Egypt has a pin in. Not eejit has an opinion! For those not familiar, eejit is the Irish form of idiot. Now, in this instance, I’m choosing to think of myself as that eejit! And as to opinions, I have many uninformed ones, probably as many as you do!)
But anyway, I’m more warm blooded than a lizard on a BBQ. I don’t like the cold. For the long-time readers of my blog, you may remember I have to take blood thinners and they do make me feel colder. Now I’m not sure if it’s an old wives tale about thin blood making you feel colder but it certainly feels that way. When I was a kid, I hated that heat, now, I can’t get enough of it.
Or, should I have back to Prague? My second home. I used to live in the Czech Republic and I have happy and fond memories of my time there. Okay, it was over 15 years ago, enough time for the mists of nostalgia to cloud my view but when I was there I found such happiness in the landscape, scenery and people. My own personal view is that they can be hard to get to know, but once you know them they can be some of the strongest friends you’ll ever make. Also, I like the aged Slivovice, which is a spirit made from plums which can be found all over the Czech Republic. But I particularly liked the aged homebrew mountain version which we used to get in the Beskyd mountains. It was not that harsh rubbish that you can buy in the shops, it was pucker stuff.
To put it another way, it was the difference between a bottle of Bell’s whiskey and a 15-year-old single malt. It was the difference between Tesco’s generic white wine and a bottle of good New Zealand sauvignon blanc.
But look, you got me digressing. Where do I go? I really don’t know. I’m looking somewhere local, and when I say local I mean less than five hours flying time, and possibly hot. Or hot-ish.
However, in the meantime, I’ll keep pondering the map.
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