How much would it cost to go to Australia for two months?

Quanto custa viajar na Austrália por dois meses?

People often ask me how much I spend during my travels. Each person has their own way of traveling, therefore the travel cost will always be relative. However, two months should be enough to make a few assumptions, and during the whole trip I kept record of all my spendings. But, how much does it really cost to travel in Australia for two months?

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What did I pack for Iceland?

What did I pack for Iceland

This year was amazing, and at last I checked out of my bucket list one of my travel dreams, this trip to Iceland! No, I didn’t see the Northern Lights, at least not with my bare eyes… (more about this in another article). But it was a trip that taught me a lot about loads of things, even how to prepare a bag and the trip itself. This time, and I hate to admit this, but my packing didn’t go so well… It was the first time I traveled to a country known to be really cold (ICEland anyone?), and I knew very few about this country too, even though I researched a lot. And I ended up overpacking some items into my bag… So here’s the list.

Gadgets

Comparing with other lists I did…, I am starting to think I might have a problem regarding the amount of gadgets I take with me… Anyway, after all of this, I ended up using everything except the Travel Adaptor. Honestly, I don’t even know why I took it with me, considering I already had an USB adaptor for European power outlets, everything would work fine. Please note that Iceland uses the same power outlets as the rest of mainland Europe, if you’re coming from any of those countries you won’t need any adaptor. Regarding the batteries, if I had doubts about their need when I purchased them, now I am certain that it was a wise decision. When I tried to take photos of the Northern Lights I really had to use the spare battery I had, even though most of the photos are still crappy… But it was way better to have a spare battery than not even trying to take those photos. Regarding the SD cards, I only had to use an extra one for the GoPro, the spare ones I had for the Nikon I didn’t even had to take them out. But I was already counting on that, I just took them as a backup.

Clothing and hygiene (e extras)

Just by looking at this list it is obvious that I overpacked…, and yes, I over packed it. I had no idea how to pack a bag for a country known to be this cold, and I also didn’t know exactly what to expect. Waterfalls? Hikes? Snow? Rain? My biggest fear was ending up soaked without a change of clothes, and considering it didn’t make sense to plan laundry while traveling for just a week… I decided to be over prepared… but while for some things I was really well prepared, I failed in a few others.

Hey! Where are you going next little buddy? Is everything packed yet?

Uma foto publicada por Gil Sousa (@gfpsousa) a 

A pair of hiking pants that I didn’t even worn, socks? Three unused pairs… The idea was to wear double pairs of socks in case it was too cold. Oddly, the cold wasn’t as bad as I thought. Underwear? 1 extra pair of boxers, the idea was to wear them after snorkel, though I didn’t even get wet (for another article), so this pair wasn’t necessary. The same regarding the extra tshirt. Regarding swimming shorts and beach towel, the idea was to use it in case I went to any hot springs, which didn’t happen… What was lacking? A spare pair of gloves…, I ended up getting mine wet while I was waiting to get in the water for the snorkel, and a dry spare pair of gloves would be awesome…

So basically, this time I really overpacked. And considering I drove a lot, I actually didn’t need that much, it was just a matter of being careful not to get wet, and everything else would be fine. Considering I had no idea how the weather would be in Iceland, I ended up being over prepared… And regarding shoes, I highly recommend hiking boots, but some proper hiking boots. Normal boots won’t be enough, mostly with ice. A good pair of hiking boots will protect your ankle, I slid a few times and the terrain is a bit unstable in some trails. If you are planning to hike a bit, think about your own safety too. If your boots are really good, like mine are, you won’t need any other kind of shoes. In Iceland you’ll want to see Nature 🙂


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What did I pack for Iceland
What did I pack for Iceland

Review: eBags Slim Packing Cubes

For a while that I’ve been doing reviews of how I pack my luggage when I travel, and recently I wrote an article about my trip to Australia where I used for the first time this amazing thing that are the eBags Slim Packing Cubes.

First impact

Review: eBags Slim Packing Cubes
Review: eBags Slim Packing Cubes

When I received the first three cubes, the first thing I thought was that I threw money away for no reason. They are way smaller than I thought they are, and I thought they would be pretty useless considering their size. When I got home I decided to try them, so i folded a few t-shirts to see how many I could fit inside each cube…, I was really surprised that they have way more space than they look like, I managed to pack 5 t-shirts inside a single cube! Really compact, and without reshaping it into a cylinder either, almost perfect parallelepiped.

Packing

What better way to test these cubes other than jumping from hostel to hostel for the period of two months? I think I already traveled a bit, and one of the things that annoyed me the most was really to keep my bag organized so that I wouldn’t have too much wasted space. During those two months those cubes proved how a great investment they were, I never had to care much about packing or keeping my bag organized, because the cubes would do it for me, all my clothes were folded all the time and always organized. I needed underwear? I just had to take the cube where I had my underwear, and if that cube was under another one? No problem, I just had to move the upper one without messing with the tidiness of my bag. Simply amazing, sometimes I even threw the cubes to my bed so that I could choose what to wear, and in seconds everything was inside again, compacted and organized!

Different ways to use them

Using these cubes to keep your clothes organized is probably the best way to use them, however I also used them to keep my camera cables, accessories and computer cable together inside the same cube, so to avoid losing any of them. In this case, being compact isn’t the advantage as you can’t compact something that is solid, but it is a great way to keep things organized. Way easier to find that USB cable that you need for the GoPro, and less chances to lose it as well. We just need to make sure we won’t put things in different places and everything will be ok.

Backpack with eBags
Backpack with eBags

I also used another cube for the toiletries, and again, being compact isn’t an advantage here either. Though, it is perfect to take all your shower products with you at once and always having them together. The cubes have a small handle to carry them individually in a more easy way.

Details about the cubes

  • These in specific, are longer, which means they aren’t real square cubes but parallelepiped.
  • They have two zips so that you can close it from both sides.
  • One of the corners has a net, so that you can peak inside without opening the cube and know what’s inside.
  • They are washable, but not impermeable (don’t forget about the net).
  • They have different colors, perfect keep your bag organized (I have 3 blue and 3 black ones)
  • They have a small handle from the side.
Content that fit in 6 eBags
Content that fit in 6 eBags

Opinion

Basically, the first impact was a bit scary, but it became love at second sight! These cubes are more useful to keep your things organized rather than compacted. No vacuum compaction, nor any other kind of compaction technology. The goal of these cubes is to make your life easier to pack and unpack your bag, faster way to pack everything inside with less chances of leaving things behind, having everything in the same place even if you chance the position of your cubes.

I tried several different ways how to place them inside my bag, some ways worked better than others, but that also depends on your bag’s format. I also noticed that having lose items inside the bag affects greatly the way you should place your cubes inside. But in overall I never had any issue with packing, I don’t think I could have a better opinion about this travel accessory.

Reviewing the hostels and B&B where I’ve stayed in Scotland

Once upon a time I used to surf couches, but now it seems like just another fairy tale… I still love the concept though, but nowadays I am more into hostels. Those times when I was hooked to couchsurfing, the main reason was the experience and contact I had with the hosts, never for the fact that was for free. However, my last experiences were way too impersonal, even as a host. Nowadays I prefer to pay, and take my chances, I might or might not meet people who I get along with, and to add to that, there is also less responsibilities, as I am not staying at someone’s house.

On what this trip regards, since we were two, the options were totally opened, for both B&Bs and hostels in Scotland, and initially, due to our lack of experience searching for a place to crash for more than one person, we ended up not finding the best options. But everything is a lesson.

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2014 Review and 2015 Goals

2014 Review and 2015 Goals

Unfortunately the blog has been quite inactive, against what I planned last year, but surely I can’t postpone this post! Every year I write the previous’ year review and a few goals for the following year, I’ve been doing this for a few years and here I am again!

A heads up, I foresee that I failed a lot this year, regarding last year’s goals. A lot happened worth mentioning, but also a lot wasn’t done either…, but let’s see.

So, here we go!

2014 Review

English classes

Writing and speaking English is not an issue for me, but I want to take this travel writer thing really serious, and for that I decided to attend for some Advanced English classes which I’ll pay a bit for… but I see it as an investment.

Well, I did this indeed and I didn’t get much out of that. It is the second time I go for the wrong course, I want to improve my writing and the course I attended didn’t give me much of what I was looking for. Well, I won’t add that for 2015 goals either, as a few things will change.

Traveling

I plan to visit another continent, I postponed Africa so or I’ll go to North America or Oceania, I might pick North America first…

Well, this one was a fail… This year, technically, I left the Euroasian plate when I went to Madeira island, but that’s part of Portugal. So, not sure if I could count that as going to a new continent…, maybe I did 😀

Due to this, I’ll change slightly my original plan, in 2015 I want to visit at least three new countries!

Moving away

By the end of 2014 I plan to be away from Ireland or being preparing my move. I learned to like this country, though I feel that I need another life changing event soon.

This one was also a fail, but for a good reason. My personal life changed a lot, so I postponed this for later. I won’t say for when, but it is something that eventually I’ll do.

Discover Ireland

Still about Ireland, I am going to buy a car soon which I intend to use almost every weekend to discover new places in Ireland and share with you all my experiences!

Well, I did this and in fairness not because I had this goal, I actually forgot about it. I bought the car just because my personal life changed and this was a big plus!

I drove a lot, but I haven’t visit that much as expected either, but surely the car helped to get to visit a few places that were unknown to me 🙂

Blog

As for the blog, I want to post at least once a week and avoid long posts (like this one).

And fail…, I started quite well, but the lack of visits to the blog, and comments, affected my motivation. Recently I found out that Google isn’t targeting my blog to the right audience (my fault, I’ll change a few about that). Hopefully 2015 will be better 🙂

Bring it on 2014, I challenge you to become better than 2013, like 2013 did with 2012 😀

Well, it wasn’t better than 2013, but it was a really damn good year! I am happy to write and acknowledge that the last three years of my life were amazing! A few less good things, but in overall I can consider myself as a lucky person!

Three Windows
Façade in a building in Berlin

Now about the blog itself

Regarding travel journal, I wrote 14 posts for the Japan Series, about the trip I did the year before. Two posts about the Romania Series (I still have a lot to do about this one), one post about Stockholm and one post about Eastbourne.

I also wrote two app reviews and a Tips and Tricks post about planning versus preparing for a trip.

As I mentioned before, I also noticed that the stats decreased significantly. In the last weeks I have tried to figure out what’s the reason behind that, and when this happened. I think I finally figured out what’s going on, but I’m not so sure yet how to fix it.

For a few years I follow Chris Guillebeau‘s blog, and honestly I think I got inspired to write these reviews after reading one of his earliest ones. I love traveling, and Chris is like the travel guru for me, I have learned a lot from his posts so I looked at it from a different perspective this time. What do I like there and why I keep following him after he finished his quest to visit all the countries in the world. Shame on me, I realized that for the last years I only looked at his posts and I saw the letters he strategically placed to form words, I never read it.

I spend a few hours re-reading one of his manifestos (279 Days To Overnight Success), and that kind of hit me in the face. My stats dropped because I changed this blog for me and not for my followers, I used to write in Portuguese (my native language) when my target audience were Portuguese native speakers. I wanted to improve my English (which I did, a lot) so I totally disrespected my followers and I disregarded my geo-stats.

I don’t seek Chris’ success, but it would be great to become meaningful and inspire other people like he does to me. My stats tell me that my followers are from Portugal and Brazil, therefore in 2015 I’ll write for them, in Portuguese, and occasionally in English (or maybe duo-lingual posts).

2015 Goals

  • Visit at least three new countries in 2015
  • Become more active with the blog (for real)
  • Paying attention to the stats and to my followers

Three things, it should be enough 🙂

For 2015 I also have a stretching goal, this one will be tough but hopefully I’ll do at least half of it! Ireland has an amazing tourism trail of 2500km, the Wild Atlantic Way. I plan to do this by bike in several different stages, maybe one weekend a month which would be about 200km a weekend… Yep, that’s just a stretching goal 🙂

And Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year for you 🙂

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2013 Review and 2014 Goals

2013 Review and 2014 Goals

I have done these reviews and goals for a while, it is nice as a self-slap in the face and / or to see how things went good. Not that I try to follow my goals religiously, but I like to think of them as a path to follow, that some times it decides to take one or two unexpected turns.

So, refreshing my last year’s post, these were my goals:

Learn or do something that pays for my travel bills.

 

Oh, no…, another huge fail! I actually kept going to the gym, this year I even changed gym twice…, but I also managed to “recover” those 8-9kgs I lost the year before…, this is definitely a goal to 2013! And I am going to go even further, I might even consider to attend to the Cork half marathon! (This is not a goal)

Yep, just two goals! One of my last year’s goals was not to make goals, and I guess I didn’t, so let’s review these two a bit.

Learn or do something that pays for my travel bills.

Nope, I didn’t. However I figured out what I really want to do, and what I am going to invest to make this become true. It will be damn hard to achieve, not a goal for 2014 definitely, but a life-term work in progress. I do love writing, I do love traveling, and I definitely do love to share my experiences with my peculiar sarcastic style, and with a bit of humor (some times). I want to become a travel writer, so I decided to make a big change on my blog.

I archived all my personal posts, they all are visible for those that have a registered account here, but I thought that would be nice to keep the blog clean as a travel blog. I also changed the template (I still need to tweak it a bit), I reorganized all the posts by new categories and new tags, and well…, a lot still to be done.

As for the income, not that is going to help much, but I added a small ads banner, not intrusive but might help in some way (or not).

Recover those 8-9Kgs I lost the year before

Ups! Nope, I didn’t…, but this was not a fail, au contraire, I bought a bike last May and I meant to use it only for weekend escapes, but I ended up surprising myself a lot, this last Summer was the best of the last 15 years in Ireland! I bike to work every single day for four months in a row! I saved money, I did a lot of exercise and I did a few detours outside Cork! I quit the gym though, with the bike I felt less motivated to go to an indoor area…

Overview of 2013

These reviews are very important for me, because I get a better perspective of how my life is changing reading my own words. The impact is unbelievable, reading old posts, written by me, and realizing that my life is changing so fast and though I can’t notice that unless I look back, it is kind of fascinating!

I wrote this for last year’s review:

This year ended up to be one, if not the one, of the best years of my life!

I could write the same for this year, but now I truly believe that hardly I’ll have such a big year! On a personal matter, so many things happened that I can’t still believe it, though most of them nor sharable on a public blog, sorry folks. But trying to sum a bit the things I can share: I did my first tattoo which, not surprisingly, it is related to my travels, I a greek meander; I bought my bike, and that really changed my routine! I went to Asia for the first time, publishing now my posts about Japan;

And though, this doesn’t sound “better than 2012”, the things that I won’t share beat any kind of event you can think of! I turned 30 this year, and this year also means a new beginning for me, I have a new birthday date to commemorate from now on 🙂

Goals for 2014

Writing and speaking English is not an issue for me, but I want to take this travel writer thing really serious, and for that I decided to attend for some Advanced English classes which I’ll pay a bit for… but I see it as an investment.

I plan to visit another continent, I postponed Africa so or I’ll go to North America or Oceania, I might pick North America first…

By the end of 2014 I plan to be away from Ireland or being preparing my move. I learned to like this country, though I feel that I need another life changing event soon.

Still about Ireland, I am going to buy a car soon which I intend to use almost every weekend to discover new places in Ireland and share with you all my experiences!

As for the blog, I want to post at least once a week and avoid long posts (like this one).

And I think this is more than enough, and a lot of responsibility for one year already! Bring it on 2014, I challenge you to become better than 2013, like 2013 did with 2012 😀


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2013 Review and 2014 Goals

A short overview of Killarney town

The weekend of November 23rd/24th I spent in Killarney, I’ve passed through the town a few times but never actually stayed a whole day there. I did it finally, the town is the start/end of the Ring of Kerry Route and it should be properly appreciated.

How to get there?

From Cork you can go either by train or bus, the train is pricy comparing with the bus and in my opinion doesn’t worth much the trouble. It won’t save you much more time, and the price is twice as much. By bus you can use the buseireann company or any of the few travel  agencies that do the Ring of Kerry tour, though if you want to stay overnight isn’t the best idea. By car it is really easy, just follow the N22 and you’ll get there in about 2 hours and half, maybe three.

What to do in Killarney?

Killarney is a very touristic place in Ireland, the city center is full with stores, bookshops, restaurants and pubs (like almost everywhere in Ireland). You can spend a full day just wandering around, we were lucky with the weather, this weekend was really sunny perfect to enjoy the streets and some of the cafés with esplanade.

Really close to the town there are the Lakes of Killarney, you can go there by taxi about 6€, but you’ll want to enjoy it and go around, be prepared for a hiking day or go by car. The lakes are stunning, a must visit place in Kerry.

At night, like it is normal in Ireland, Killarney also has a good variety of pubs, life and traditional music are easy to find, mostly during touristic seasons.

My recommendations

One weekend in one place is never enough to make proper recommendations, but there are some places that stand out, and for me in Killarney the Pay As You Please is a must visit place, for lunch dinner or even just a coffee. The outside area is really inviting just by itself, we spent the whole afternoon and even had lunch there, on a sunny day the esplanade is going to be sunny the whole afternoon. The food was really good, and the staff deserved 5 stars for their sympathy. I’ll come back for sure!

 

2012 Review and 2013 Goals

Peru

I don’t write for a while…, a long while…, and this has to change. So, first goal for 2013: get my blog back to life!

I am doing this “reviews” for the past years, and reading my last review and goals, I surely need to do more and planning is not one of them. I think I still plan too much considering the amount of things I (don’t) do.

About 2012, I still want to learn or do something that pay me the bills, or at least let me travel and pay for my travel addictions. It’s easy to say “freelancing”, but harder to do it. I love my current job, and now that I have more free time I should invest it in other ways rather than pubs 🙂

FAIL! However, I don’t regret failing with this because the reason was not only the pubs, but the people I’ve met! Thank to these new friends that were such an important part of this year.

But I am going to get this “old” goal back to life, so second goal for 2013: Learn or do something that pays for my travel bills.

About the volunteering, I won’t do it in 2012 for sure, probably small projects or campaigns like the Movember one. Volunteering is still a life goal, but I am sure that I won’t be able to do it properly in 2012, I want to take 4 or 5 months off for that and since I just got a new job that I really like, I’ll postpone it a while. Probably I’ll do it in 2013, who knows?

I knew I couldn’t do it in 2012, and I didn’t. Movember is still Movember, and I can only support this cause (maybe I should also consider taking my health more seriously). This year wasn’t half the fun, and probably in 2013 I’ll collaborate differently (but still with the mustache).

Learning Spanish! I don’t know why I never did this before in a very serious way! I know some Portuñol, I have the advantage that the Portuguese grammar and vocabulary are really quite similar with the Spanish one, and with a good level of Spanish I’ll have almost half of the world as an easy “target” to conquer!

FAIL! Damn it! I am getting depressed now! However, due to my new (and great) friends, I am getting better with understanding French. Maybe I should invest in french instead of spanish, no? I am not going to make a goal of this this time…

Travel! That’s not a goal, it’s rather a lifestyle 😀 Until now I only have one big trip planned, to Peru, but I am looking forward for bigger days in Ireland because I want to explore deeper that country. I don’t believe I’ll do another big trip in 2012, maybe to Greece with my parents (if I manage to convince them…), but nothing more than that. But well…, already thinking about 2013 😀 Planing travels is really addictive 😀

Ahhh, another big fail! Regarding Ireland, not about traveling.

Peru was awesome, and I need to get back to describe the rest of the travel on this blog. I also went to Greece, last-minute decision and extremely spontaneous! It was great to decided, ask for days off and book flights in just two hours! 5 days in Greece was sooooo few, and I knew it way before hand 🙁 Greece and the friends I made there have a very special place in my heart! I don’t know when, but I’ll go back to visit you guys again 🙂

I also been to London, for the first time, to visit a friend. I am actually going back to London in three weeks, weekends are not enough to enjoy that city properly, most probably I’ll go there more times (it is so easy to go from Cork).

And Portugal, this year just for weddings, three! What’s wrong with people, everyone getting wed now??? Well, still great to come back to Portugal and this time I managed to travel a little bit with my family as well, and see long time friends 🙂

However, this Christmas I stayed in Cork…, not alone though, I brought my parents here for the first time 🙂 My mom’s first flight! I didn’t take them to Greece, but I did it to Ireland. It was great to have them here and comforting at the same time, because now they know that I am actually really well here.

Sports, I need to do more sports…, I started with the gym a few months ago, but I’d rather do more outdoors. After March I might apply to kayak lessons, and keep doing hiking. I’ll try to organize one or two hiking trips, Ireland is quite nice for that.

Oh, no…, another huge fail! I actually kept going to the gym, this year I even changed gym twice…, but I also managed to “recover” those 8-9kgs I lost the year before…, this is definitely a goal to 2013! And I am going to go even further, I might even consider to attend to the Cork half marathon! (This is not a goal)

And I think that’s enough for goals, few but possible to achieve! Everything else is bonus 😀

Ah, so funny….

Well, goals are just good to keep us motivated, not to make us feel frustrated if we can’t achieve them. This year ended up to be one, if not the one, of the best years of my life! I achieved so many things that make me feel so good that I wouldn’t dare to write it down. For the first time on my life, I could do “magic” helping my parents and give them exactly what they were needing and they couldn’t do, money wise speaking. I traveled to a new continent. I did my first transatlantic flight. I went back to Greece, after several years just “thinking about that”. And much more other stuff. But regardless everything, the best was and it still is, the friends I met on this road.

I failed all my 2012 goals, but I achieved all those lifetime unwritten goals. Who cares about goals, if life can be so great anyway? I didn’t fail anything, I just didn’t do it yet 🙂

2011 Review and 2012 Goals

Unpacking for 2012

Last year I wrote the 2010 review and 2011 goals, which turned out to be surprisingly good therefore I’ll do again this year and see what happens.

Unpacking for 2012

Some highlights about 2010:

I’ll keep this goal, to go abroad, but now with a slight difference I won’t make such a big deal of it.

Considering that I am now working in Ireland, I can tell this goal was successfully achieved! The best part is that I really didn’t make a big deal out of it, it happened almost by chance. I tried unsuccessfully several times to get a job abroad and at some point it was more important just to change my job, when I gave up with the “abroad” idea this chance appeared and I didn’t let it go, again 🙂

Another thing that I want to change is my blog’s name, but for that I need that something changes in my life, something worthy.

Look Left looks like a name’s change 🙂 And I guess I can say that something really changed in my life! 🙂

I need to do something meaningful with my life such as volunteering and helping those that really need it!

Not yet…, but I was part of the Movember Team, I believe that’s a start 🙂 And I just realized that I never wrote about that…, shame on me! I should do that ASAP!

My goal for this year is getting a way of self-sustain and invest sometime to learn something that I can earn money working at home and anywhere, this doesn’t mean that I will quite my job but that I want to get a Plan B.

I totally failed with this one…, postponing it to 2012!

I will keep writing in English

Mission accomplished! This one was easy, and I believe I improved my English quite a lot 🙂

My feeling about 2011, before I (re)read the 2010 review and 2011 goals’ post, was that half of my year was again a total disaster…, but now I think that the whole year was a huge success! Every single step I did was in the same direction, even if I didn’t realize it by then, quoting Steve Jobs:

Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards.
So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

And I am already feeling like it!

A more deep review about 2011, despite the pre-set goals, 2011 was really another big year like all my latest years. In January I started actively searching for a new job, and because of that I gave up of some opportunities I had, it took me several months to get it maybe because of the crisis, maybe because of my lack of experience, maybe because of my CV. I don’t really know. Normally this kind of things leads to frustration, and at some point I lowered my goals and I decided  to”just move”.

May was the month that everything changed, and I say quite often that if someone told me in May that I would go to Peru in less than a year I would think that person was crazy or just trying to upset me…, and now I am preparing a trip to Peru in less than two months!

10th June, Portugal’s day and the day I left Portugal again! New country, still in Europe. The fourth country I lived in in less than 5 years! I am still amazed by how much my life changed, and eager to keep doing it! I’m only sorry for not starting this life earlier, because I am really loving being me just right now!

I miss my nephews’ birthdays, but as a present I brought them to Ireland, their first flight trip! Well, both are too young and they might forget about it soon…, but I was with them for at least a few days and that’s the more important thing.

In October one of the most important person of my life passed away, after almost three months it’s still hard for me to accept it…, but life’s goes on.

I am back in Portugal now, for Xmas and NYE, returning to Ireland today! Again, looking back I can say the year was a blast again! Some very bad things, some really good, but in general the good ones were the majority.

About 2012, I still want to learn or do something that pay me the bills, or at least let me travel and pay for my travel addictions. It’s easy to say “freelancing”, but harder to do it. I love my current job, and now that I have more free time I should invest it in other ways rather than pubs 🙂

About the volunteering, I won’t do it in 2012 for sure, probably small projects or campaigns like the Movember one. Volunteering is still a life goal, but I am sure that I won’t be able to do it properly in 2012, I want to take 4 or 5 months off for that and since I just got a new job that I really like, I’ll postpone it a while. Probably I’ll do it in 2013, who knows?

Learning Spanish! I don’t know why I never did this before in a very serious way! I know some Portuñol, I have the advantage that the Portuguese grammar and vocabulary are really quite similar with the Spanish one, and with a good level of Spanish I’ll have almost half of the world as an easy “target” to conquer!

World Map

Travel! That’s not a goal, it’s rather a lifestyle 🙂 Until now I only have one big trip planned, to Peru, but I am looking forward for bigger days in Ireland because I want to explore deeper that country. I don’t believe I’ll do another big trip in 2012, maybe to Greece with my parents (if I manage to convince them…), but nothing more than that. But well…, already thinking about 2013 😀 Planing travels is really addictive 😀

Sports, I need to do more sports…, I started with the gym a few months ago, but I’d rather do more outdoors. After March I might apply to kayak lessons, and keep doing hiking. I’ll try to organize one or two hiking trips, Ireland is quite nice for that.

And I think that’s enough for goals, few but possible to achieve! Everything else is bonus 🙂

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2010 review and 2011 goals

Lisbon

In the beginning of this year I wrote a summary of what happened to me in 2009, a great year indeed preceded by a better year, 2008! Well, unfortunately I can’t say the same regarding this year and the name of this blog might give you that same idea.

I started this year with a goal, visiting castles in Portugal and writing a guide how to reach them using only public transportation…, well, I didn’t do it, just visited (again) Óbidos and nothing else, neither the Castelo de São Jorge which is 3 or 4 kms away from my current house…

Last year, when I returned to Portugal, I had the goal of going abroad again this time for a longer period…, that was the main reason why I accepted this job, I naively thought that being on a multinational company I would get a better chance, maybe in a couple of years I’ll harvest the result of this bet, but so far I see no vantage of this. We are now in December, and I am still in Portugal however not unhappy as you might expect, I really had the chance to prove myself that I am better than I thought, I just need to push a little bit harder and I will get it! I got the opportunity, I blowed it but most important, I also learned with it! I’ll keep this goal, to go abroad, but now with a slight difference I won’t make such a big deal of it.

I have now a nephew! That’s really a big thing for me, considering that there is nothing to be proud of my achievements this year, this is really something that makes me happy and really overcome everything else! Needless to say, that I really mean what I just wrote.

Another thing that I want to change is my blog’s name, but for that I need that something changes in my life, something worthy. The same applies to my life goals, I am almost 28 and I really had amazing experiences that makes me feel that I am having a great life! I shouldn’t complain about it, but I do. I feel that something is missing and I already know what that is, I need to do something meaningful with my life such as volunteering and helping those that really need it! This might sound pretentious or just another “Miss World” expression, but it isn’t. As I said, I am almost 28 and eventually I will die, sooner or later (duh), why spending my life helping others getting richer when I can spend my life helping others having a better life? My goal for this year is getting a way of self-sustain and invest sometime to learn something that I can earn money working at home and anywhere, this doesn’t mean that I will quite my job but that I want to get a Plan B.

In resume, 2010 was a failure as a personal perspective, but another amazing year regarding familiar aspects! The balance is positive!

2011 WILL BE better, definitely! Nothing concrete to do, and I don’t need to. I will keep trying to go abroad, maybe I’ll push a little bit harder, but as I said, I will just try! It is not a goal, it is a bonus in case I can get it! I will find a way to self-sustain and I will invest sometime getting good at it!

I am not lowering my goals to avoid disappointments, I just want to live one day at a time and keep avoiding to get resigned with my life!

Oh, and I almost forgot! I will keep writing in English, I have friends everywhere and not all of them know Portuguese (thanks google for the translator! but it isn’t the same thing), and I really need to improve my English…, is not that bad as used to be, but I really need to improve it! All the grammar-nazis are welcome to correct me, but privately, please 🙂