I see you shiver with… Anticipation

I sat up wide awake at 5:30 this morning.

This is not unusual for me. I’m an insomniac at the best of times, despite trying desperately to go to bed at a decent time every night and get in a good 7-8 hours of sleep.

But this time, I sat up in anticipation. In about 5 weeks, I’m taking a well-deserved holiday from a summer of moving twice due to flooding, a broken bone, a pet dying, and unbelievable work stress. I’ve been planning this holiday since January, which is a particularly long time for an impulsive person like me.

I’m going to Burma. (Or Myanmar, if you prefer.)
Shwedagon Pagoda

My flights are booked. My immune system is pumped full of fresh boosters. I’ve gone through the diplomatic waltz of getting a visa, which was surprisingly uncomplicated as long as one follows instructions. My pet sitter is ready for miss Interrobang. I am carefully squirreling away spending money for a country that for the most part is off the credit card radius, does not accept traveller’s cheques, and has very few functioning ATMs. And I’m bringing a relative travel virgin with me to boot.

I don’t think we will come back the same.
Temples of Bagan

And tonight the realization hit me. I haven’t been this giddy to go exploring in years.

But first, I must conquer sleep. Baby steps.


Fences do not make good neighbours – or how I visited the West Bank in 2008

A fence, a wall, a divider runs through the land. Some have called it the Berlin Wall of the 21st century. Some call it a land grab, some call it a security fence, some love it, some hate it. I crossed it. Continue reading

Life’s a beach

I first saw the ocean when I was probably 8 years old. My family went on the one and only family vacation we ever took, and we drove from Montreal to Wildwood, NJ. The drive took forever, in my mind. It felt like I was crammed in the back seat of our beige Topaz without air conditioning for at least a month. We drove through gridlock traffic outside of New York City. I cried that I wanted to go see NYC. We probably stopped for a frosty. I didn’t want to go to New Jersey. Who the heck goes to New Jersey, anyhow? (We did. That’s who.) Continue reading