Monday, June 27, 2011

Loosing it

Am sitting at home, when I shouldn't be sitting but packing or making sandwiches or something, and thinking about how cool it is to have friends all over the place. How cool and how oh, not so cool to have them! 

I mean, come on - in the last 3 or 4 days have been invited to Germany, France, Italy, Spain.. and would love to go call upon all the amazing people I know there, even have a cool route in my mind that would start tomorrow and finish somewhere at the end of September, but I can't embark on it due to my Warsaw commitments. Man, I must really be loosing it if an internship, which could be doable via Internet if I played it right, and a vision of working with a cool travel company seem like too big a commitment..

my bus to Berlin leaves at 6am from a place that will take me at least an hour to reach, so I should leave in less than 7 hours. In which time I should make my backpack, prepare my breakfast, lunch and whatever else I can eat while on my way to Germany, get some sleep, take a shower and clean my room. 

I guess tonight I'll just settle for food and the backpack, will sleep on the bus itself (after all got 10 hrs to spare) and tidy the room in July.

That's settled then, I can go back to writing.*

Am beginning to work on Magu Bee's travel stories, this time in my native language. Man, it's so hard to write in Polish!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Everything happens for a reason

I was supposed to be getting my London ticket last Friday. Had found a quite ok fare, talked it over with a friend and was ready to buy it. We all know, however, that all the cheap (sorry, low cost – political correctness above all) airlines make you pay a fee for credit card payment, which quite often is just as or even more expensive than the tickets I buy, unless you have a prepaid card. Which I don’t. Luckily, a friend I’ve just been to Italy with does and she agreed to help me. 4 days have passed and due to different circumstances I still haven’t got the ticket. At least now, I know why.

.         .        .         .        .

I was to stay in London with Z, whom I’ve been meaning to visit for quite some time now. However, she’ll have another friend over at the time and as her room isn’t all that big, we’d be a bit short of space. Thus, I was about to give myself only one day in UK before I set off to Iceland. M, the helpful friend with a prepaid card, wanted to get me my ticket on Friday, but she couldn’t due to the lack of financial means on the card. She transferred some money to try again Saturday morning. Saturday morning came, but the money didn’t, so she still couldn’t buy it. And then we left for Sicily where we found out that one of the biggest holiday resorts on the northern shore of the island has zero internet cafes (seriously guys?). Our hotel (the beach) didn’t have a computer we could use either. By the time we could get online again, the ticket’s price had gone up again, so I decided to look for something else once I’m back home.

I’ve been back home for a couple of hours now but no cheaper flights on the given day was to be found. I’ve decided not to risk it and wait for some hot deal, and gave the green light to purchase the flight. Yet again, as the price had gone up, not enough dough to pay Raynair off. So again, the angelic M said she’d transfer some more cash and get me the ticket then. About half an hour later G, a Lithuanian friend living in London, wrote me after quite some weeks without contact, and invited me over to hers. So, I’ll get to see her and some more of my friends, pay less for the flight itself and enjoy London a bit more (and have read about a new mango joint yesterday , which I’m all too eager to check out, so yay!).

Thanks bank transfers for taking so freaking long! :)

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Gelato.. comes Magu Bee!

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Who said you can't have it all?

They lied.
At least this last week and a half! 
(oh, another one and a half I've noticed today!)
I'm a lucky person, I've said it many times before, but even I can't believe at how great the last couple of days have been and how wonderful the next few months seem to be.

But let's take it from the beginning. 
I haven't been quite myself for about 2 or 3 weeks and was kind of frustrated, which I forbid myself. Also, the slightest hint of regret was begining to appear and that was simply out of the question! So I was starting the weekend with less energy than I should have had, the only things keeping my spirits up were a fun Saturday out at an open swimming pool (which later grew into a home made Mexican meal and a club openning with the best music ever) and meeting F on Monday (we're on the 6th of June here, better keep track!). (F's a super nice Italian girl living in Dubai, whom I'd met 4 months ago during a night out in Bombay and who was coming to Warsaw on a work trip.)

Monday - I meet F in the evening in her hotel. Going up in the elevator of the Westin hotel makes me really homesick for India. Seeing her and listening to how her life's like might have gotten me down. However, somehow, it gives me a strange kind of hope and motivation to change what I don't like.

Tuesday - A crazy day ends with an even crazier night. A night to remember. Or not to, actually, as others will find out later - I get to relive the Hangover in real life. Some of the funniest txts in my life follow.

Wednesday - I have an interview in Centrum Studiów Polska Azja (the Center for the Polish Asian Relations) and I land the internship I wanted. I'm given a couple of column topics and choose interviewing Asians living in Warsaw. I add a twist to it - instead of writing them down, my editor agrees to a video column. Great, now all I need is to freaking pull it off :) A meeting with S is next and we talk about some cool things we could work on together for his travel platform.

Thursday - Am already on a roll! I meet owners of a cool travel agency and suggest they get in touch with my Indian (ex)boss - he might need such a well-rounded Polish partner. Then we start talking, I ask questions and answer some. By the end of the conversation we've decided to start working together on some projects. Am excited as hell.

Friday - I think and ponder and think some more, and decide to try and make it to Tripani, Sicily, for the weekend of 18th-21st. I'd bought tickets a while back and later decided I wouldn't be able to go. 'Why the hell not? I can make it work!' I hear myself saying and that's it - I'm going to get me some gelato! Round ticket for Kraków - Tripani costs me 55zł (14€).

Saturday - I meet with M and the meeting's successful - I've got my cameraman! Also, T agrees to be the lead of my first interview. Yay! Randomly surfing the net, I stumble across a travel blog which makes me rethink a lot of things and the decision's made - I'm starting a Polish website with my travel adventures. I have a theme, I have the name, little bees keep on flying in front of my eyes the whole day. Which ends great - with one of A's culinary soirees.

Sunday - I go to my summer house and while repainting some old chairs, I make the decision to take my life back into my own hands and not settle for anything less than great. Regret's not an option - I'm going to Iceland!

Monday -  I buy my IcelandExpress tickets. And so there's no turning back - on August 2nd I leave London for Reykjavik. A return ticket costs me 350€. Now how the hell do I cheaply get to London in the middle of the summer holidays??

Tuesday - Things can't get much better, right? Wrong! In the evening, when I'm already low on energy and falling asleep standing, I get txts from my friends. Lots of happy txts. It turns out I've placed 2nd in My Way.

Wednesday - I talk to my boss, we work things out and finish amicably, good! I read the Rules of My Way and somehow they don't fit in with the picture painted in their email. Either way - I'll have dancing money. What will I ask of them, I wonder? Also, C's fb status (a cool Australian met in Malaysia in October, met again in India in January, living in Berlin) tells me about Roskilde Festival and that they're still looking for staff in exchange for accommodation and food. Now that's interesting..

Thursday - Today's been a busy day. In the morning I find out there's a CS event near Tripani this weekend. I've no idea how, but I need to get myself there! The problem is I land at 10:45 pm and no buses operate to the camp site. Let's see.
Also, C tells me whom to write about Roskilde. She's going there on the 29th, hitch hiking from Berlin. Now that's something I can't miss. I find bus tickets to Berlin for 10€, already got my booking number ;)
I'm on the waiting list for the festival, but I figure that even if that doesn't work out then I'll hang out in Denmark, never been there afterall, and on the 4th or 5th hitch hike back home with C.
I talk to P, who is on a reggae festival in Spain till the 25th or 26th of August and still doesn't have a return ticket. 
'Why don't I fly to Spain from Iceland and we hitch back home?
'Why don't you then?'. 

So now, apart from a cheap flight to London and a bus to the CS event in Sicily, I need to find a nice connection to Madrid/Barcelona ;)

.       .        .        .        .

And why the tittle? 
(Apart from the obvious good fortune that's been stalking me these past few days?)

When coming back from Spain, I wasn't thinking about getting a job. An internship or a part time, sure. But nothing too restrictive, as I just needed time to figure out where to go. However, a great opportunity was thrown at me and I had to give it a shot. I was ready to stay back for a while and work on it. I thought all was gonna be swell - it wasn't. That's where the beforementioned frustration was coming from and it wasn't a welcomed guest. So, decisions had to be made.

Now, on one hand, I could say I failed. I won't go through with the project, won't be earning, won't learn all I was looking forward to learning.

On the other, though.. I was thinking about it last night and it hit me - I got all I originally wanted and more! I worked for 1,5 months, learned some, met great people, earned some and figured out what I want to focus on. Plus, got to win a contest, plan 2 cool short trips and still managed to find reasonably priced Iceland tickets, so no regrets will follow!

I do have it all now :)

One and a half

Have just been chatting with a friend I haven't talked to for a while, so of course the question that's come up is 

'Where in the world are you?'
I said 'Warsaw, like a month and a half or so­ ­'
'A month and a half ago since you've been there or until you leave?!'

And then I realised one and a half is THE number for today.

I've been back in Warsaw for a bit over a month and a half.
I'm leaving Poland in a day and a half (only for 3 days, but it still counts!)
And in a month and a half, I'm leaving for my next trip.

How cool is one and a half, I ask you? ;)

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Changes coming, yet again.

It seems that another exciting chapter of my life is about to begin.

Can't wait to be able to give more details!

As for the previous post, I haven't made it to the next round. It's sad, but on the same day those doors got shut, life opened a window for me. With a view I cannot and will not complain about.

.     .     .     .     .

By the way, a couple of weeks back I found a contest on fb. The thing was to create a video displaying your passion/life story via the company's aplication. I did so, stating how I couldn't stop dancing wherever I went, and started campaigning it among my friends and their friends. However, I was way behind other competitors, as I found out about it a couple of weeks into the competition. At the beginning I was getting many new votes a day, but then most of people must have gotten fed up with my spamming (can't say I blame them all that much) and so I wasn't gonna make it even to the top 10 (the 1st prize was 15 000zł = 5k$, the next 9 was 1 000zł = 330$). I've already kinda forgotten about it and today I got txt from two friends with a lot of happy faces. I ask them what's happened and they ask me if I'd seen the contest's results.  
Nope, I haven't. - they read my reply.  
You've won $, you placed 2nd. - I read theirs.
How's that possible? - you probably ask yourself, much as I did.
People were cheating. - comes the most natural, yet still surprising answer.
And then I'm really happy, as $ are very much needed at the moment.. ;)

However, there's still a chance not everything will be so peachy - not 100% sure those 330$ will be given to me in cash. Apparently, it states that I shall receive a voucher for such amount. And seeing how I don't drink and the company does in liquor, I wouldn't appreciate vouchers for their products (unlike my friends - some of them are already organising a party and they intend to drink on my account, naive little people ;) ).

They're supposed to write me within 3 days, let's see what happens.

.     .     .     .     .

I hope they'll contact me asap and that once they do, they'll want to give me some $. I need to get to UK soon and somehow haven't been able to find any cheap flights...