Thursday, September 12, 2013

Life Is Just Easier That Way

A good friend of mine recently told me, life is just easier when you live out of a duffel bag. I tend to whole heartedly agree. There are so many pros to living on the go. There are so many adventures to be had, and a million more people to meet. You can live a million lifetimes with only three pairs of clothes.

There are some negatives though. No matter what anyone says there is just no place like....your own bed. Which leads me to my next adventure.

When I was a sophomore in college the most exciting thing in my life (at the moment) was getting an apartment! I had two other roommates and we found the perfect place. It was a cute little apartment, three bedrooms, walking distance from school, and near many good friends. It was also 100% able to flood. The day we were moving our clothes and ourselves in was the day we lost our little apartment to about six feet of flood water. The water rose so high it lifted the refrigerator on top of the counter tops. My roommates and I lost our beds, our desks, and many, many other valuable things.

Luckily, one of my roommates had a wonderful boyfriend. He literally rode a mattress in and out of the flooding apartment saving as much of our stuff as he could until we could get there. The next few hours we spent finding a new place to live. Our next apartment was on a hill.

Once we found it one of my roommates and myself decided to stay there without furniture, clothes, or beds. We did this to try and get everything situated for the new place. Those days were hard for me, but you know what? The hardest part was not having a bed. My roommate and I slept on a queen sized air mattress in our empty apartment for almost a week. I hated it. It was the first and only time I'd ever been homesick.

This story has a happy ending. The new apartment had turned out better than we had ever hoped. My roommate and I had formed an even stronger friendship, and I ended up with the most wonderful bed in the whole world. My new bed had memory foam, and a pillow top, and it was just luxurious.

The moral of this one is that no matter where you go or what happens, sometimes you need that safe place to escape to. For me it has always been my bed, and I will forever have a bed to come home to.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Always Know Who You're Sleeping With

When I was in eighth grade I went on a trip to Washington D.C. with my school. The trip was supposed to be educational (and it was), but what I took from the trip was far more terrifying and

Disclaimer: When I say know who you're sleeping with, I don't mean having sex with. I mean of course you should DEFINITELY know that, but you should also know who you are sleeping beside.

During this trip there were four people to a room. It was myself, two of my good friends and one of their mothers. I shared a bed with the girl who's mother was not with us. One day I woke up to find our chaperone a little freaked out. She was just kind of looking at me, and when I asked her what was wrong she asked me if I remembered staring at her in the middle of the night. I replied with of course not, but she said I had to. She said it was because when she asked me what was wrong I had replied. I was a little freaked out,  but after that night it didn't happen again so I forgot about it.

It wasn't until college when this started happening again...more frequently. My roommate tells me that I would often sit up in bed and just stare at her. She would ask me what was wrong and I would just continue to stare. This happened enough that we named my alter ego, and main suspect in any attempt on my roommate's life, Martha. Now, I've been lucky that every time I've traveled, and Martha has made an appearance my companions trust me enough not to believe me to be a closet homicidal maniac. I've been told that Martha can even hold small conversations.

Moral of the story: Know who you're sleeping with. In rare cases it may not be a sleeping disorder, it may in fact be a homicidal maniac. In that NOW.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Concerts, King Beds, and Pneumonia?

This one takes place at a Pentatonix Concert in North Carolina. (First of all...PENTATONIX IS THE BEES KNEES! Go YouTube them here immediately.)

Photo courtesy of

This was just a little two day trip, no planes were involved, just an epic six hour car ride that involved lots of screaming to Pentatonix songs in the car. Here's what I learned from my little trip.

1) Check discount hotel websites. On this trip we got a VERY nice suite with one king size bed, one living room, one kitchenette, two TVs, one couch, and one really nice master bathroom. How much you ask? 80 dollars for the night! In the middle of Charlotte! (total of $40 each)

*(A few of my favorite discount travel sites are )

2) BRING WEATHER APPROPRIATE CLOTHES! This trip took place in the middle of February and I was the idiot who thought "Gee...I like snow, it won't be too cold." WRONG, so very very wrong. We waited outside in the snow and sleet for almost two hours and all I had on was a fleece zip up. This lead to a pretty nasty cold that set in almost immediately after the concert ended.

3) Go to concerts. Brave the chaos and go see someone in concert whether you like them, or if you don't even know who they are. Concerts are great places. You learn so much about yourself at concerts, like; am I really brave enough to dance around like an idiot in front of people I don't know? (p.s. The answer should always be Heck Yes!)

The moral of this DuffelTale is to break out of your comfort zone. Get the fancy hotel, drive six hours to a concert no one has heard of, dance like you'll never see these people again, and enjoy every second.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Sometimes You Have to Break the Rules.

I have been flying since I was three. It all started with flights to see my grandma, and I was hooked for life.

This story takes place on a flight to Rome. This was an overnight flight and as the plane was starting to take off we were receiving our usual "emergency instruction." We were also told to keep our visors down, as not to disturb others who may be sleeping.

Now, I had not flown in a long time and I wanted nothing more than to see the sky the entire time we were up, but listened to the flight attendants and kept my visor down....for a while.

When we were about an hour from landing I did the unthinkable. I lifted my visor. It was like a bat signal to the flight attendants. Dark cabin + open visor = immediate distrubtion to the peace. I saw the flight attendant coming, and was regretting my decision pretty much immeiately but I stood my ground and kept my visor up. When she got to my seat she leaned over my travel companion and whispered to me, "Since you are the only one with your visor open if you take a look out of the window you will see Paris, France below us."

(Picture from the forbidden open visor.)

It was the best unexpected gift ever. I was relieved to not be in trouble and was rewarded with a once in a lifetime sight.

This in NO WAY condones robbing banks or anything of that sort. By breaking rules I mean small rules. Don't murder anyone. I mean it. Santa is watching. Just don't be afraid to stand by your decisions.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

You can NEVER have enough underwear.

Right now I'm just a 23 year old living at home with my parents, but by night I'm just a 23 year old bumming off all of my friends living out of my duffel bag.

When I grow up I want to be a world traveler, but you never really "grow up" so I'm going to start as soon as possible. So far the places I have traveled are great, but what I never realized is that I learned the most from the things I didn't go to see.

Most of the lessons I have learned are 100% applicable to life.

1. It's not about the travel companion, it's about the adventure.
I went on a really big trip a couple years ago, and my companion wasn't who I had ideally planned in my mind. Ultimately when I look back the trip was everything I wanted it to be, no matter who had come along (and we ended up having a great time together.)

2. Sometimes, you can start a trip thinking you know exactly what you want out of it, and come to find out it was the unexpected surprises that made the trip great.
When I went to Italy, the Sistine Chapel was all I could think about. was everything you could imagine, but what no one tells you is that the wall "supporting" the ceiling is the most gorgeous sight you could ever hope to see. I spent the entire allotted time for the viewing the ceiling staring at the wall, and I have never regretted it.
("The Last Judgement" courtesy of

3. You can NEVER have enough unerwear.
I don't have a story for this one, but just trust me. This tip will save your life.

Through the course of my blog, I hope to share stories and lessons I have learned from my travels, whether they be trips to the grocery store or trips across VERY large ponds.

Live, Love, Travel

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