It took me a while to go on and do it... It was my last visit home that made me think it is actually worth sharing. You'd think 2 weeks in paradise would be a good enough reason for anyone to share anything.
Well... It isn't quirky and it probably won't make you laugh either. I couldn't do a video, as I'd just sob uncontrollably. I thought a little insight through a few photos I took while back in Poland last week may give you a better picture instead.
I've been back from my travels for just over 3 months now and am still in a haze of how incredible the last year has been. It is amazing how many people out there keep saying I wish I could do what you did!
My question is always: 'So why don't you?'
The list of excuses is endless...
I'll tell you something. My mum and dad
, both in their 60's have never been abroad, ever! Not that they didn't want to. They didn't have passports and couldn't leave the country without explaining why, where and how long for. That’s living your life in communist Poland for you and boy was I lucky to be born in the 80's and able to go places they've never seen when I was old enough to just go off and do it.
I don’t want you to feel sorry for them. I don’t and I am sure they do not either. I want you to see that there’s always a way,
a way to see the world, even if sometimes you're stuck in the country you live in…
They both knew it was going to happen. I've been going on about it forever. Their hearts still sank when last year I gave them this empty journal
and said they can keep up with me filling the blank pages with stories from far away on the other side of the globe.
I spent hours in internet cafes uploading pictures
so that they could see where and what I’ve been up to.
There is this secret green box
that holds all discs mum burnt with over 3500 shots of me making my dreams come true some 7.500 miles from home.
Dad picked ‘just’ 130 to print and make their new journal look pretty…
And here are his handwritten notes, waiting to be transferred to ‘the book of my travels’
. He promised to have it ready for Christmas so we can re-live this last year together.
Sometimes they even told me what’s worth seeing
and where. Their 'little' guide book collection
for you (no, there really aren’t pictures of me in there I promise ;)!
And mum always knew if I took off
and touched down
safely… Not much you can't do online
these days, is there?
It’s hard to get souvenirs
from everywhere you go, when all space you have is your backpack. So I kept a note and a coin
from every country I went to and made this book for them. They loved it!
And here, you can meet them.
This was September 2011,
we're sat down at the airport,
before I flew back to the UK from my last visit home before the big trip was due to begin
. I don’t want to know what’s going through their minds at that very moment… 12 months later
I found these in my bedroom... I was back home again. I think they were happy to see me :)
So here it is
gapyear.com. My best kept secret unveiled…
I haven’t even told my fiancé that trotted the globe with me for over 10 months…
I’m quite good at making my own dreams come true. But I always do it for them too. So they can see the world they’ve not seen
, through the eyes of the one that just packs and goes… just like they always wanted.