Month: May 2010

London, England: The End?

By the end of my road trip with Phil I was exhausted. Not physically, but mentally and emotionally. I was travel sick, plain and simple. In principle, I really wanted to explore Wales, more of Scotland and Ireland, but I would’ve just been going through the motions. I started toying with the idea of going home.

I decided to head back to London anyway and see my cousin Shanti since I wasn’t able to before I left London the first time. Phil dropped me off at the Glossop train station and after a big hug goodbye, I waited for the train to Manchester with a car’s worth of rambunctious school kids.

On the train to London I considered my options. Backpacking with the wrong attitude is a recipe for disaster. It sounds like a cliche, but you have to want it. Otherwise you walk like a zombie through the streets of ________, never really knowing what you’re seeing or even appreciating it. Backpacking is a drug. People get addicted to it. But knowing when to take a break is the key to enjoying it in the long term (I started down this “backpacking as an addiction” analogy and now it just sounds disturbing).

I contemplated going to Ireland and trying to find a job, but the prospect of conducting the search I performed in NZ, except this time in a big city, it seemed daunting. Especially when I had engineering jobs on the horizon; two years of being away from the software game made me start worrying about my future.



Ambleside, England; Edinburgh, Scotland; York, England: The Whistle-stop Tour

We set off from Glossop by about 10 AM and headed north towards the Lake District, a mountainous area of northwest England and home of the Lake District National Park. In fact, all the land in England higher than three thousand feet likes within the park.

We drove through some of the smaller towns, around several lakes and tried to figure out what we wanted to do. It was nice enough just driving, so by the time it started to get dark, we found one of the villages to stay for the night. It was called Ambleside and I’m sure if it had been during the peak winter season, or even the peak of the summer season, it would’ve been filled with outdoor enthusiasts and travelers. But to our benefit, we found a room at a really nice B&B for a pretty good price.