Wanderlusty Wednesday

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Just a quick note to say I’ve started a new job this week and I’m a bit busy, to say the least. This weekend I need to figure out a way to have time to work, and write, and blog, and sleep. (If anyone has any tips, please let me know.)

And it’s Wanderlusty Wednesday, so I have to leave you with something! So if you’re contemplating a trip, here are some suggestions…

If you want to head south…

If you want to head further south…

If you want something Mediterranean…

Or you’re looking for a different kind of beach…

If you’re in the mood for some castles…

Or a different kind of castles…

If you’re looking for some fascinating history…

Or you just want to stop and smell the flowers…

If you’re looking for a real-life literary location…

Or just want to hang out where the writers once did…

Be sure to check out all my travel posts here!

Image found here

To Be Happy

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I recently came across this article. I know these kind of things are becoming somewhat cliché, but to summarize, a girl gave up a high-paying job and NYC lifestyle to move to St. John and work in the service industry (aka bartend and scoop ice cream).

I always have a carousel of feelings when reading stories like this.

Reaction 1: I should do this.

Reaction 2: I’m not 22 anymore, I want things like a house and a family and to have those things I need things like a job and health insurance and a 401K. This type of existence would be temporary at best.

Reaction 3: Maybe it would give me more time to write. Maybe it would give me more interesting things to write about.

Reaction 4: But what if it doesn’t?

Reaction 5: BUT I HATE SITTING IN A WINDOWLESS CUBICLE ALL DAY

Reaction 6: But the money is good and my job isn’t that bad….

Reaction 7: I’m such a coward, why don’t I just DO IT?!?!?!?!

Reaction 8: … because all the reasons I thought of before….

… and repeat.

I remember reading somewhere that you need to write down the top 3 things you want in life, and if any of them conflict with each other, you’re destined to be unhappy. My top 3 are:

1. To be a novelist.
2. To live in a happy home with/near people I love.
3. My health.

The things I’m doing to achieve this are:

1. Writing every day (and reading, and interacting with writerly people on the internet, etc.)
2. Ensuring I’m not too busy to make time for my boyfriend and friends. Saving money so I can someday move to somewhere with a backyard and afford to make it a place that feels like home.
3. Eating right and exercising.

So I’m pretty sure I’m on the right path, right where I am. If I were to expand my “things I want” list, it would include traveling more, spending more time outdoors, having more time to write, working at a job I’m more passionate about. Moving to an island could help with some of those goals (outdoors! travel!); but it would also conflict with the “happy home” one, in that I’d be nowhere near most of my loved ones, and likely not saving money for a house/family. And who knows how much writing time I’d have if I was busy bartending or scooping ice cream all day?

Life is about choices. You give up one thing so you can get something else. Unless you’re incredibly lucky and/or incredibly rich, you can’t get everything you want all at once. And escaping to St. John (as lovely as it is) wouldn’t get me any closer to the things I really want.

What are the top three things you want in life, and what are you doing to get yourself there?

Above photo taken by me at the Beach Bar in St. John, June 2012

Friday Things

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I’m a bit behind on the blogging due to a last-minute re-vacation to St. John (pictured above), where I devoured these novels. But I am back now, in full-on getting-ready-for-spring mode. In NYC the snow is melting and I am back to writing and attempting to move my life to where I want it to be, one day at a time.

Here are three things that improved my week:

1. I have a music discoverability problem in that I’m too lazy to discover new music so just listen to the same stuff over and over until I’m sick of it. I found this article on Medium and I’m going to start taking these suggestions to heart.

2. I started adding a dash of cinnamon to my coffee before it brews and it makes such a difference.

3. My “real” job (the one for which I get paid, unlike writing) is in the beauty industry. I never write about beauty because I am surrounded by it 40+ hours per week and that is enough, to be honest. However, people are always asking me for skincare advice. And honestly, the best one I can give you? Drink massive amounts of water. Especially in winter. Especially after a vacation of binge-drinking painkillers and rum punch. 10 glasses every day makes a remarkable difference in your skin. Trust me.

I’m also adding a reading/watching/ (and hopefully listening to, eventually, when I discover more music) section to these posts because I love those:

Watching: I’ve been called snobby, but isn’t that just another word for having discerning taste? So in the midst of complaining that I hadn’t seen a great movie in ages, I stumbled on this trio of films. I know I’m a few years (or decades) late, but if you’ve never seen them, they’re the anti-blockbuster: beautiful, poignant, largely plotless, and amazing.

Reading: I’ll Give You the Sun. If you read blogs about books, you’ve seen this title everywhere. It’s so worth the hype.

Wanderlusty Wednesday: Dreaming of St. John

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Confession: I like winter. I really do. I like Christmas and I like snow and I like hot cider (even better when spiked: this recipe is amazing) and I like staying in under cozy blankets and writing and drinking tea. But yesterday as I was walking home from the subway, the wind off the East River in my face, my fingers frozen even through my gloves, I found myself dreaming of warmer climates.

I never used to think of myself of a Caribbean-type person; my travel-style has always been more adventure-inclined. However, there is something really nice about a trip where you’re supposed to just lie on a beautiful beach all day. If you’re up for one of those, I highly recommend St. John. It’s a quick flight (from the East Coast), tiny, not touristy, made up entirely of beautiful beaches, breathtaking sunsets, and painkillers (the best cocktail ever–and it doesn’t taste the same if you make it at home). We stayed at Gallow’s Point half the time, and the rest rented a beautiful house up in the cliffs where we could look out over this inlet.

It was a different kind of travel experience for me, to be sure, but isn’t that what wanderlust is all about–trying new things?

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