I’m what you would call a Heinz 57. When people ask me where I’m from, I ask them how much time they have. Often times, I pull out whichever nationality suits me best in the given scenario. When I’m travelling, I’m Canadian. When I’m guilting a friend into doing something, I’m Ukranian (I also use this one when I’m eating an entire plate of perogies to myself). When I get stuck on a train going the wrong direction, and am cursing loudly in English, I’m American. I can also be Austrian or Romanian or maybe even Polish, depending on when you feel like drawing borders. And when I drink, oh, I drink like I’m Irish.
I’ve got a three week break from school in April which means it’s high time to catch up on my travelling. As I’m more or less in the centre of Europe, my choices were limitless. Gelato on a terrace in Italy? A Communist tour in Berlin? Sailing in Croatia? Bungee jumping in Switzerland? Limitless quickly became overwhelming. With the addition of my horrendous luck, I was wary of coordinating all the necessary transportation, transfers, tours, and hostels. So, I let go of the wheel. I’ve decided to do two tours to relieve me of the stress/culpability.
There was a song from my childhood called “The Blood of Cu Chulainn” which always gave me a touch of nostalgia for a country I’d never seen. Visiting Oxford last week made me long for more time in the UK. Through my sister’s friend I heard of a weeklong tour through Ireland and I was completely sold. After spending a few days in Dublin, I’ll join the tour which takes me through Blarney Castle, Cliffs of Moher, Killarney, and Inis Mór. When it’s all finished, I’ll fly back home to Vienna to meet up with my friend Emily who’s visiting from her exchange in Sweden.
After Emily leaves, I still had a fair bit of time before school started up again, so I was back online trying to find another tour that fit with my budget, timing, and that didn’t visit Austria. I finally settled on a second week long tour, but this time through London and Paris. The tour takes us to all of the most notable and historic sites, leaving me to have guilt-free free time visiting the more delicious and fashionable ones. I’m definitely going to end up testing the limits of Ryanair’s luggage weight restrictions as well as my waistband.
My flights, tours, and busses are all booked, and I’m already starting to get excited even though I have another three weeks to go.
…But I think I may start Irishing my coffee now.
XOXO Jenny O’Ball