The Rocket man!

I’ll start with one of my favorite travel quotations

” If you are brave enough to leave behind everything familiar and comforting which can be anything from your house to bitter, old resentments.. And set out on a truth-seeking journey. Either eternally or internally and if you are truly willing to regard everything that happens to you on that journey as a clue, and if you accept everyone as a teacher and if you are prepared, most of all to face and forgive some very difficult realities about yourself. Then the truth will not be withheld from you”

This blog entry is dedicated to a fellow traveller and a friend. A beautiful soul that walked this earth for way too short time. A true traveller and adventure seeker.

Got terrible news last week, a friend was found deceased on his travels in Asia, Laos. They think it was his heart. If it was his heart or something else, one thing is for sure, he was way too young. Young and living his dream.

I have not known Mikell for long, I met him in Copenhagen and we became good friends. He had a personality that equal to 10 people. His smile and vibrant way of being was highly contagious and we had one thing very much in common.. To travel, passion and love for traveling . Seeing, living experiencing different cultures.

This news has left me with a grief and my heart goes out to his girlfriend, the love of his life, and his family. It has also left me with thoughts, deep thoughts as how delicate life can be.

He headed out with a bike  and a head full of travel plans, open-minded and ready, to make a life long dream come true, as he said. He left his job, home for months to travel. It makes me think about my own travels. There I was, went out for 10 months, jumped into situations that were dangerous, careless, reckless at times by my own will, my own choice. So many things could have gone wrong, so many things could have happened.. But here I am.

Life is only a moment, his death has affected me in such a way I have hard time describing it and put  it into words.

One thing I have decided, he will be remembered on all my future travels, where there is nature, different scenery, country’s and cultures to explore, his dream will still live.

Always remembered never forgotten.

Below is a link to Mikells and Maria’s blog and the last video he made from his trip on his blog.

“Rocket Man”

And the blog

http://mikellandmaria.com/

With these last words and thoughts, my heart goes out to his family and friends. May he rest in peace.

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Top 10 and whats up!

I promised some top 10’s last time I wrote.

I’ve been back for a while now, about 7 weeks. Back to work, back to life.. Reality, and boy it has been a hard change coming back. I have not missed wearing shoes, putting on make up and styling my hair every day. I have not missed routine life that much at all. I’m back at work which is nice I’ve missed it a little, but I day-dream about the ocean every day. Day dream and dream about it at nights, it has become an obsession and I truly miss it. Here is a picture of yours truly, the way I looked with all my bags, back pack and dive bag

With all my gear!! that’s a lot of gear.

Few of the “strange things that have happened or changed inside of me since I came home from my travels, the ones I notice!

  1. Somehow, I am very sensitive about water use. I do not waste it anymore, or try my best not to.
  2. Paper usage, the same.
  3. I don’t “need” anything! seriously, I don’t have the feeling inside anymore that tells me, I need this and that.
  4. Always liked animals, now I love them. I want to save them all!! Not possible I know, but that’s the feeling I have.
  5. More time for friends and family, after all they are the most important people in my life, and the ones who will be there in the long run.
  6. I can NOT throw food away! I have seen people do the strangest wildest things to get food, so I do not throw it out. No more over consume in buying too much then throwing out!
  7. ANYTHING is possible

So here comes my Top ten from this trip

Out of all the places I saw and went to there are few that are amongst my favorites, and hard to pick one favorite. I did go to USA and travelled through there, I spent almost two months in Mexico and travelled through. Went to Cuba for a week, then I spent 6 weeks in Guatemala where I travelled a little and lived in Antigua and learnt some Spanish. After that I went to Honduras and travelled through the Islands. Ended up living in Utila for two months. After that I headed down South to Ecuador and to the Galapagos Islands for three weeks time. After that I went to Egypt to live and study Tech and Trimix for 2 and a half months time in Dahab. Right after that I went back to Mexico to live for three months, and from there I went to Iceland to spend time with family and friends for 8 days and then to DK. So all time favorite places from this trip, places that were breathtaking were in this order.

Galapagos Islands – the island Isabela

Guatemala – Semuc Champey

Mexico – Acapulco

Cuba – Havana 

Honduras – Utila

 USA – Grand Canyon

Finally, Egypt – Dahab, Blue Hole

These were the places that left some foot prints in my heart, Acapulco became such a favorite spot that I managed to visit it three times in one year and Mexico twice.

Other experiences, big ones. Of course there were things that happened on the trip that were both good and bad. Some of which is easy to put in words and others not. Good things and bad. There were some fears faced, challenges and people met. I learnt a lot, a lot of it is indescribable some of it not.

So challenges and fears that were faced, met.. 

Acapulco. Right in the beginning of my trip, I went on this glide flight thingy.. Got to be one of the birds for a day, awesome experience, will do again

Also did a swim from they’re beach, jumped from a cliff in the middle of the ocean, and got caught in a wave that I had a hard time getting out of.. But, so worth it.

While in Cancun, I also faced a fear of heights by jumping down a whole in the earth, down to a cave. There were some bats to watch out for on the way down, and im not a fan of them.

Semuc Champey.. here we did this crazy adventures trip

Where we went jumping off cliffs, bridges, waterfalls. Basically everything you could either throw yourself from or jump off. we did it.

Diving with sharks! Roatan, Honduras..

Now, that was a challenge, and facing fears.

Found out when I was down there, that I was not actually that scared of them, more the thought of seeing them.

Galapagos, facing school of sharks, all kinds and especially hammerheads

But found out that they, as well are actually not as scary as they seem on pictures.. They actually have this goofy kind of look and seem harmless.

Saw all these underwater creatures and found out, all that fear I had for them Was all in my head. It’s different when you actually see them, it’s more frightening to think about then to face.

Another big one I faced.

Went to Egypt, joined a Tech and Trimix team down there to learn Technical and Trimix diving.

Dived down to 101. meters.. Never thought in my wildest dreams I would ever have the courage, strength or will to do that!. Goes to show, Anything is possible.

So. I guess that’s it. For now.

I have hundreds of beautiful pictures from all over, a lot of new experiences, thoughts and ideas after this year away. New goals and a new way of seeing things. Who knows what I will be up to in a year or two, but one thing is for sure, I’ll be keeping this blog alive, every time I travel, I’ll write about it.

Two things that have been difficult since I came back home, one is going in on my blog. I miss the travel, the diving, the tropical scenery and all the people I’ve met so much that I’ve avoided going in here on purpose . Secondly, its my dive bag.. My dive gear and my books. I have it in sight every day, but don’t dare to skim through it, not yet, but soon im off to Iceland

Photos I took in Iceland last July.

Yep, going for 4 days only. Would love to have more time, but that’s it for now. I will be doing some diving in these four days.. Cant wait.

And in the end of September, I’ll be heading out to London! First time in England.. Should be interesting, so at least two blog posts from this young lady in September.

And to one last thought in the end. The most important thing.. Where your base is, is your  home or as they say home is where the heart is. Mine is with my family. Missed them while I was away, still do, they are all in Iceland. Cant wait to see them all and hug them, here is a good-bye picture of me and one of my brothers and sister

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Changes!

The 3d of Juli i got into another country, this time around my favorite one, Iceland

Or as Led Zeppelin says it so well in they’re Immigrant song which is  about Iceland “We come from the land of the ice and snow, from the midnight sun where the hot springs blow”

It was amazing when the plain flew over the country, i’ve really missed the nature, the summers at home are without a doubt the best. The sun is strong and it’s bright as day light at midnight. I had not told my mom, brother nor sister i was coming home, they all thought they were going to talk to me on skype at 8 o clock in the evening but instead i knocked on the door.. Almost gave my mom a heart attack and my sister looked so shocked, all worth it🙂 I was at home only for 8 days. Wish i had, had more time but that was it this time around. I got to spend alot of time with my best friend that lives over there which was long due, and met family members shortly but got to hug all of them. And i went to the town i’m from, to visit my grandma. Does’nt feel like i’m home unless i visit her.

I took alot of pictures, but again, having problems with camera/computer so none of my photos are being posted now, it will have to come up another day. But i found this one, it looks alot like a typical Icelandic out on the country side view.

This is what i call nature, pure, strong, powerfull, clean nature.

I did’nt get to dive unfortunately.. It will have to be next time i’m home.

Now im in Copenhagen Denmark. yep, a month and a half earlier then i had expected originally, but then again i have’nt exactly been following my travel plans perfectly.

So thats my new plan, to stay here in the country i’ve lived in for the last 8 years for yet another few years to come, and  luckily enough i’ve been offered my old job back. Yep, going back to Street Cut on Falkoner, which i could’nt be more happy about. I’ve missed my old colleagues and customers. It feels good to be back after 11 months away. And therefore, for now, back to rutine and i will be doing small weekend trips in Europe which i will be writing about on this blog and posting some pictures, still providing, advices and travel guidance where i’ve been myself.

I’ve learnt so many things on this trip about myself, different cultures, about people, circumstances.. The list is endless and actually found out that i have a real passion for writing. i’ve really enjoyed making these posts on my blog, and while i’m writing about places i’ve been, at the same time getting more info then i would normally get through. So alot of changes have occurred and positive ones.

With these big news and words i’ll end this post for now. i will be writing another one soon about the highlights of myn year trip, things like what i liked best! biggest experience! scariest moment! up’s and down’s, a little “Best off” blog entry😉

A goodbye pic of good old Copenhagen

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Rainy season.

Writing from Cuernavaca Mexico, where it has been raining 24/7 due to “rainy season” and all i have been wishing for lately is sun. Guess i should be thankful for having dodged winter for a whole year, coming from a country where we have winter almost nine months a year, this has been  GREAT ten months so far.

did a little sightseeing in Cuernavca today, normally i try not to do the typical tourist things, and i’m not a fan of museums.. At all, but i went to this “travel museum” . This museum is basically museum owned by a famous deceased artist named Robert Brady.

So, this artist died in the 80’s, he was a painter and what he loved to do was travel. He traveled all over the world and all the things he has in his house, he bought and took home with him from his travels.

Just take a look at this bathroom.. Art all over the place, anywhere you look. It was a eye candy to look around in this house.

And the kitchen.. Well, looks a little like Mexican kitchens look like still to this day.

so i walked around the whole house, beautiful architecture and art everywhere you looked and my number one favorite piece in the whole house.. What made this whole trip to the museum worth while, ws this piece, this original Frida Kahlo Self portrait.. Amazing

That was just big.. To see one of her originals. But the whole house was amazing, Robert Brady was an true artist, his house reflects that clearly.

And a happy picture of Iker in the museum

So no regrets going to this museum to take a look around.

After that we headed out to the Borda garden, which the emperor Maximiliano owned in the 17 th century. The garden.. what can i say, i have seen alot of gardens, this one had historical value, that was about it.

Freedom!!….

Other then that, not so much up.. Other then i’ve changed my travel plans once again.. “surprise, surprise”  but more about that later, soon i’ll be heading off from beautiful Mexico, to my parents relief. Somehow because Mexico is alot in the news when it comes to drug wars, and kidnapping this is the most dangerous place in the world.. Which it is NOT!..🙂 but parents.. What can you do!

off for now, leaving you guys with random pics i took today of colorful houses and streets in Cuernavaca.

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Pesos!

You guessed it.. Everything around here costs money.

Decided it was about time to write a little about some of my experience of Mexico so far. Im still in Cuernavaca, not far from Mexico city only an hours drive away.

Funny things i´ve noticed so far. Actually noticed these same things the last time i was here September last year, and that is “Everything costs money around here“.. Everything. It´s not a bad thing, it´s actually not alot of money you have to cough up for small things around here but thats exactly it! You do pay for small things, and you pay for the strangest things.  And that striked me as odd in the beginning of my Mexico travels, and as a backpacker (thats clinging on to its money) kind of pissed me off a little bit to.  Until i got to know the reasons behind it.

You see, around here they have jobs for everything. Im not talking about the normal 9 to 5 jobs. Not the supermarket, daycare for kids not the typical jobs we have everywhere. Here, in Mexico and Central America, you dont get paid from the goverment if you are without a job. You dont get any kind of money from your state while you are seeking a job. There is actually no support social system that is working here for the people that are standing without jobs.. Nothing!.. You dont have a job and you´ve got kids!! thats to bad, you are on your own.

Which brings me to all the “jobs” around here.

This guy works on the corner of where the superama supermarket is.. (dont remember the street name)

You might notice he is not young! this is a “pretty” picture of few of the jobs that people are doing around here to survive. This old fella, comes dancing around your car, while you are waiting for the green light to switch on, right to Superama, the supermarket.. Have to hand it to him, a good strategy, people are coming out of the market, with they´re car filled with food and they drive by this old guy, that does´nt have the greatest singing voice in the world, and frankly does´nt know how to play this flute he is holding , but you feel sorry for him, so you give him 5 pesos.. Awww.. What the heck, i took a picture of the poor guy, and he is old.. I´ll give him 10 pesos.. Thats nothing, thats like not even a whole dollar..

But before you drive by this guy, before you leave the supermarkets parking lot you almost cant, with good conscious, leave that parking lot without paying the guy that steers you “safely” out of the parking lot 5 pesos.. Or if he looks old and should´nt be working then 10 pesos, because after all thats nothing comparing to where i come from and the US dollar!.. And, besides he needs the money more then i do. “I can afford it”!.

You pass this old guy on your way home and then you keep driving, until the next light. There you have all from young street kids, to elderly people almost attacking your windshield with cleaning liquids, before you can say anything to stop anybody, your already clean windshield, is all (not so) clean again. And what happens, well, although you tried your best by waving your hands frantically, forming the words clearly “NO THANK YOU”.. Now, you have to pay.. Why! because they´ve already spent work on it.. Plus they need the money more then you, and after all its only.. Well, you know the drill by now.

On your way home, from the supermarket and all these lights you stop at a gas station because you need gas on your car. You ask for whatever gas you might need, again your windshield is being attacked. And you have to.. Well, dont have to but you are asked for tips, and its just plain rude not to. Thats how it goes, and there are more lights to cross on the way home, people have to make earnings.

Scary thing i saw the other day, maybe he was a drug addict, maybe that guy was starving, i frankly dont know, but in the middle of the traffic he laid himself down on shattered glass to try and get money from people, by “preforming”.. Would have been an cool act if he was´nt all scars on his back after that performances..

Anyways, on my way home yesterday a man followed me all the way from the store to the car, holding an umbrella over my head because it was raining, waiting for me to give him money for the service. Which i repeatedly said “no thank you” to, all the way to the car. Of course, i could give him a little 5 pesos.. thats all. And so i did, feeling pressured to do it.

All im saying, a one day here in giving people, tips, money for work that you are not asking for, that you dont need, that normally under no circumstances would ever be called or considered as a “job” in Europe, for example, well. It can easily end up in you spending some money you actually as a backpacker cant afford, but then again, if you dont help, then who will!!!.

And amazingly i´ve seen it worse. I know it is worse all over the world and kids are working from the age of 4. Guatemala had alot of those examples when i was traveling through there.

This is just supposed to be a little eye opener, a lille reminder of how good our lives are, where for us that come from countrys where we have a support system that actually works. We might not get alot of money from our state when we are standing without jobs, but we do get enough to get by. But people get greedy and forget to be thankful, things cost more and they “need” more. Instead of counting our lucky stars. It´s not all that bad in Europe.

Buenas noches out there

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I travel, therefore i AM!!!

Been thinking lately alot about travelers, such as me. What makes people just pick up they´re things and go. Leave they´re secure basis,existence, secure lives and just do it!

What makes people resign their jobs, pack away their things or sell them and buy a ticket to travel around the world for months, or a year. Who are the ones who make these decisions! what are those people made of! What makes them just take the leap!!

I have written here earlier about being a dreamer, a go – doer. People in DK were saying things to me like ” being brave to do it, go alone out in the world to travel. Leave everything for a year” My response.. Either its brave, or stupidity.. We´ll find out.

The thing is, although i have never done a whole year travel like this before, i have done something similar to this.

When i was 24 years old i was living in Iceland. It was in a  November month, and a friend of mine invited me over to Denmark for new years eve. It was supposed to be two friends hanging out having fun for a week and then back home. I had been trying to end a relationship for months but we kept circling around each other treating each other bad and i was working three different jobs at the same time, trying to get ends to meet. I was up over my head in debts, unhappy and felt like my life was. Well, best described as “Shit just kept raining down on me” no matter how i tried to get out of it. And there were few things i tried ,stay positive, meditate.. Believe me when i say, if its out there, self help in any kind of way! i have tried it all.. Nothing was really going my way.

Then, it hit me! i had a plain ticket to Denmark! I had one very dear friend of mine living in Denmark at that time, i knew nobody else over there. My whole family and friends my life was in Iceland. Everything i knew was in Iceland my whole way of being, existing all there, on this small Island. Now, Denmark is not far away, and has been a popular destination for Icelanders for years but for me it was a whole new beginning. So, in the beginning of December, i resigned my job, packed my stuff in boxes sold the rest and off i went with a telephone number at a hair salon, and a room my friend had got for me for the next three months, waiting for me in DK. No job! no stuff! i had literally no money, i had enough to last me for about a month in food and bus fare. I did´nt speak the language, it was just me, a girl from the countryside carrying a suitcase and alot of excitement and fear. I figured, well if everything goes wrong at least i have a room for three months.. And i could call the bank at home and ask them to save my ass by loaning me money for a ticket back home.

I phoned the owner of that hair salon when i had been in DK for three days. I spoke English to the owner and told him that i was looking for a job. He invited me to meet with him the day after and we could see how well i would do for a weeks time or so at the Hair salon. 5 days later i had a steady regular job, and i stayed in DK until i went on my travels September last year or for about 9 years with the same company as well.

Normally, i would be first in line protesting when people “run away” like that, i would say, you´re taking you´re troubles with you, but in this case, my case it was the best thing that ever could have happened to me. This was not my intention when i left Iceland, i did not know that i would end up living in DK. I hought to myself, i would stick around for awhile.. But “awhile” became 9 years.

And the same thing happened when i decided to leave for my travels this time around. I got scared… I had the money, but i also had “the job” the staedy life, the perfect appartment. Even had the whole damn thing furnitured from this expensive fancy store in DK. The perfect job, a steady big group of clientele. I had “everything” and therefore i felt, just by thinking about leaving all of this, was irresponsible, childish Whisful, foolish thinking.

I got over that quickly. Every time i have been on cross roads in my life, i have always thought about this.

What did i want to do when i was a kid, what were my dreams!

So i guess the differences in us who do those things, and in the others who dont, or dream half of their lives of doing something like this is.. Will! You have to want it. How badly do you want it, because if you want it bad enough, you c´ant do anything else then succeed.

Apart from all that, i´ve figured out ALOT of things about myself during those 10 months i´ve traveled so far. I am, without a doubt a brave girl. I never thought i was, but i guess i just did´nt know. The world is SO big, there is so much to explore! how can you ever get tierd of that!! I cant.. Dont think i ever will.  “To travel, is to live” a famous quote made by the Dane, Hans Christian Andersen. And as much as i love diving, breathing underwater, I love “Breathing the world” a quote that decorates my blog, made by my dear friend Merete Norgaard🙂

Still in Mexico Cuernavaca. Soon i will have a new country to write about as i am off to Panama the 1. of July. Cant wait, and cant wait to get in the water and do some dives .

Remember the picture i took and posted here in May month, of a Mexican girl sitting, looking sad in a colorfull dress!. Her birthday was the other day. I wanted to give her something special so me and Iker played with that photo and here is the outcome.

Dont grow up too fast out there, enoy life while you can!

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Upwards and onwards, my next step

What am i up to these days! Im starting up my own independent mobile hair salon. Yep, it is going to be one of those “on the road” salons. I´ve found out throughout my travels as soon as people find out that i´m a hairdresser, and a European one on top of that,  they want  me to do their hair. So i figured, i´ll make some cards, open a website and do my own thing while im traveling and right now im in Cuernavaca Mexico, so its easier to get some work while im at the same place for awhile. Who knows, this might turn into something bigger with time.

And thats the front side of my card . What do you think ? I thought the name Utopia Hair was cool to, because of the meaning of the word Utopia.

The word has different meanings, but basicly it means a world, a world you yourself create. A good place, magic place and for me its meaning is perfect as i love traveling and am trying to get my work and life to fit into that frame. The perfect world. Being able to travel and work and mix the whole thing together, but at the same time im open for new opportunities and have right now also, other plans in progress for work. But more about that when the time is right .

And then there is my “next step”.

I´ve decided to go to Panama. A little Island called Bocas del Toro in Panama. We will be going in the middle of or late June, dates are not settled yet but it will be in June.

The plan is to join a school of underwater videography and do a PADI course with them that takes around two weeks, but we will probably hang around there for about five weeks and do alot of diving and videography.

Yep, thats my new plan. Time to go and do some more traveling, i feel like ive been at the same place far too long now. I really dont know alot about the Island. What i read about it and see on the internet, it is very similar to Utila just cheaper to stay in Panama than Utila so thats an upside. Here is another picture of apart of this beautiful small Island

Im not expecting anything special there other than great diving and learning something new. I have never been into videgraphy its Iker´s thing, but this opportunity came to us and  we´re both in the position to go and do it, so it was an easy decision to make. Plus everything, all courses from PADI helps when you want to work with diving and that will be one of my future steps and dreams, mixing the dive into my life as work. preferable Trimix dives🙂

The underwater videography center we wil be joining is this cool center named NeverDry.. How cool is that for a name of a underwater center. Googled pictures of the center found none, so you´ll get this computer screen one from their website

That was my next step news. Im looking forward to exploring Panama, and see what decisions i will be making over there where my travels will take me. Funny how i seem to be “stuck” in North and Central America when my original plan was to “travel through” some countrys here, not end up using almost an year in staying around here.
But im happy with how things turned out, loving the sun 24/7. The heat, the different cultures, people, places, belief systems, different opinions different way of living and seeing things. Guess this whole traveling business has changed me a little bit huh!😉 At least in some ways.

Thats it for news of me for now, a goodbye pic of me and one of three dogs that live here, The big carecter dog, Taos🙂

 

 

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