Twenty-five things I learned while traveling this summer

By July 13, 20142014, Europe
  1. Shade is a precious and beloved resource.
  2. According to the evidence, I secrete an invisible but potent shoe-destroying substance. I’m on my fifth pair.
  3. Rest stops in Europe vary wildly. Carry hand sanitizer, toilet paper and no expectations.
  4. Men’s razors are half the price and twice the efficiency of women’s.
  5. Czech shares no cognates with English. Do not expect to be able to understand labels or signs.
  6. Some French supermarkets have champagne aisles.
  7. Some French supermarkets also have cheese aisles (multiple)
  8. Sometimes when people talk about a “recent” event they refer to something that happened before your country was formed.
  9. Half the people in Paris are not stylish. Maybe they are travellers too, but yay, you don’t look like the only slob!
  10. Sometimes that person who grabs you in the subway just fell. And sometimes that person is me.
  11. You can’t scrub the dirt off your shoulders if it’s freckles.
  12. The camp stove will betray you.
  13. Don’t place your tent by a highway
  14. There are so many people in the Louvre. So many. So, so many.
  15. On the list of places to discover you now have claustrophobia, a bookstore is not the worst.
  16. I have claustrophobia now
  17. Stained glass can make me cry.
  18. A bed is a luxury. (No seriously, beds are so luxurious. It’s amazing. So good. I almost cried.)
  19. People are kind almost everywhere, if you’re panicked and pathetic enough.
  20. Everyone in Switzerland is in better shape than me, including people three times my age. Especially people three times my age.
  21. A rum baba is not rum-flavoured, it is rum-soaked.
  22. Hot chocolate in Spain is more like hot pudding, a.k.a. heaven in a Demi-tasse cup.
  23. Nothing can make or break a campsite faster than the bathroom situation.
  24. Men in London wear REALLY nice suits. Makes you really aware you look like you’ve been sleeping in your clothes for two months.
  25. Be open to everything, excited by most things, don’t worry about what you’re eating, and carry a coat. You’ll be fine.

Bonus: check your pockets for earwigs before you eat that candy you left in your coat last night.


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