A few years ago I did an 18 month coaching programme with my previous company. I didn’t quite know what coaching entailed prior to that, but loved the concept and found it very useful to incorporate into my management style. As part of the programme we had to set some coaching goals upfront to demonstrate some sort of a return on investment. Most of these goals were work related, but there were some personal goals as well.
The other day I stumbled across these goals and one of them was ‘ Travelling to a new destination at least once a year’. What a great goal! Not sure what it had to do with coaching, but it was there, and I had to do something about it!
So, I have done a bit of a goals assessment (guess what I have been doing a lot at work recently??)…
Firstly, the rules… The trips cannot include work trips, unless I have purposefully taken leave and extended the work trip into a bit of a holiday. Fair is fair and a zip in and out of a country, mostly only seeing hotels and factories cannot qualify as a proper trip for purposes of the goals? Kapeesh?
Actually, that’s the only rule, but if I can add a second rule then it would be that the trip should be a memory builder, i.e. I should take pictures, do new things, and experience new cultures. So a long weekend to Magaliesburg doesn’t count either…
So, let us start at the very beginning, which is a very good place to start…
I actually did 2 trips in this year….In June, I took a trip to Perth, Australia, to visit my long time friend, Coleen. I blogged about this trip a couple of years ago. I enjoyed catching up with my friend, but also managed to find the wizardly get together spot in Fremantle, managed to get lost, run out of petrol and see some Kangaroos! I would love to go back to Australia one day, but this time visit the East Coast where I have several friends.
In December of that year, I went to the city that never sleeps, New York! What a fantastic trip. We stayed walking distance from Central Park, did all the touristy things such as Staten Island, the Empire State building but also went to see a New York Knicks game at Madison Square Gardens, saw Jersey Boys on Broadway and the Rockettes in a annual Radio City Hall Christmas Spectacular. We even made a trip up north to a little town called Cold Spring. And managed to get caught up in a snow storm on the eve before coming back home. I still think seeing New York City coming to a standstill and Central Park covered in a snow blanket will be etched into my memories forever.
In July I made a trip to Dublin, Ireland. My boyfriend at the time was working in Dublin and I had to go to London for a business trip so decided to make a bit of a trip of it. Dublin is a beautiful, friendly city with so much history.
I managed to make a trip out to Newgrange to visit the 5000 year old Neolithic mounds and even did a day trip to Belfast, winding my way back through the beautiful countryside.
Of course a trip to Dublin would not be complete without a visit to the Guinness brewery and a traditional pub. Johnny Fox’ pub is famed to be the highest pub in Ireland and provided live music and lots of laughter.
In December 2012, I did a trip to London and spent a week in Edinburgh and Scotland. I did an amazing tour through the Scottish Highlands, visited the site where Monty Python and the Holy Grail was filmed and spend an amazing few days getting lost in Edinburgh, exploring Scotch Whisky and exploring the underground city. I blogged about the the Highlands tour here.
Afterwards, I spent a few days with a very good friend in London, catching up, having a traditional English Christmas lunch and even making it to Winter Wonderland!
This was the year of my epic trip to Peru. I joined up in Lima with my friend Ingrid and her husband, and we visited the Amazon, Cuzco and hiked the Inca trail to Machu Picchu…all in one amazing holiday. I wrote several blog post about the trip, with my favourite being the final post. It was truly an unforgettable trip and I will definitely make my way back to South America again one day…hopefully Ecuador!
Last year, I took the girls on a trip to Italy and we spent some wonderful mother-daughter bonding time together. We crammed 3 days in Rome, 1 day in Venice and 3 days in Florence into a week, and had a wonderful time! I managed to get lost in the Vatican this time (or lose my tour group at any rate), lost my wallet in Florence (thanks to a pick pocketer) and walked until my ankles looked like balloons.
And then of course, Bianca and I went to London in December last year, where she visited her best friend, CJ. We did all the London touristy things, and I made her year by taking her to the Warner Bros Harry Potter studios! I have not posted pictures of this trip, but here is a favourite!
So, I guess the question is, where to next?? I have been tobbing to an fro over the last few months about this same question. Bianca is going on a European tour with her school and I wanted to do something with Anya. We have a full week again and after much deliberation, I decided on the perfect mix of Europe and Asia. And soon we will be traipsing the ancient streets of the largest city in Turkey! That is correct, we will be visiting the Blue Mosque, the Hagia Sophia and exploring the Byzantine footprint!
Istanbul, here we come!
Lots of love, G
“I am not the same, having seen the moon shine on the other side of the world.” – Mary Anne Radmacher