What does travel
mean to you?

Self expression & Self construction

¡Bienvenidos!

My home base for the bulk of my adventure has been and will hopefully continue to be Madrid, Spain. Madrid is like a second home to me and is really where I’d like to settle down. Words cannot describe how much Madrid means to me for it is a place where everything feels right, where the possibilities are endless. 

Currently I am back living in Madrid teaching English again! During my time here I plan to continue building upon myself in every way possible. While here on la tierra española, I plan to stay indefinitely, and construct the life I have always wanted. 

I cannot wait for you to explore my blog website and delve into the wondrous world that we all live in!   ¡Aproveche!  

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Bridge your gaps and discover yourself through traveling

February 2021 – 

Aqueduct ‘ — the roman word for a constructed channel that bridges the gap between two things, can be thought of in a dual sense. Think of the arches as the traits, lessons, and skills picked up along the way on your journey. The more you travel, the more you can channel what makes you, you, and thus you are quite literally ‘constructing yourself.’ 

Some photos from my travel adventures  : ) 

Conoce a Mi Cómplice y Mejor Amiga:
Amelia

Hola hola!! Briana’s best friend Emily here (a.k.a Amelia). As you may have read earlier, I was studying abroad for a year in Spain when Briana and I met. Briana joined me in the Spring semester of my year abroad. I had met one of our other very close friends in the Fall semester, but when she left I was alone in Madrid waiting for the new group of students to join me. I remember introducing myself to the new group of students when they came to Madrid in February and I was hopeful to find someone to go on more adventures with! Traveling alone is an amazing experience and I would recommend it to everyone, but it’s also wonderful to have some good company! This is why I was so excited to ask Briana to join me on two trips I had planned before she got to Madrid. I had booked a flight to Porto and Athens for the Spring and was planning on going alone until I met The_Traveling_Guapa. From that moment on, Briana and I became inseparable and still are to this day!

My year abroad was transformative to say the least. I had always wanted to go to Spain and I took a big risk going for the entire year. I wasn’t friends with anyone who was going and I was to be away from my friends and family back in the U.S.. Above all, I knew I had to take advantage of this one of a kind opportunity. My Spanish was very good going into the year, but living, immersed in the Spanish culture enabled me to polish my language skills. Ultimately, it made me fall even more in love with the language! It was a tough year to be away from the people I knew, but I learned so much about my self and gained more confidence than I thought was possible. By taking risks to travel around Spain and Madrid on my own, I was able to explore, meet new people, and listen to their cuentos, or stories, which opened my eyes to new diverse perspectives.

Traveling brings new and exciting experiences and gives you the opportunity to meet amazing people and lifelong friends. If you can, try to find yourself a traveling guapa/o to make each experience abroad that much more unforgettable.

great travel essential Brands:

My Biggest tips for the safest & best travel experience:

Budgeting any and everything will be your best friend no matter where you go or what you are doing!!

‘Saving your money’ is  the single biggest tip my dad would always tell me! Plan out what funds you have and what you’d prefer to spend them on, then you will have a better idea of what you can realistically do. This will save you worry, time, and ensure that you can stay within your means. 

Planning your itinerary is one of the most stress relieving tips I can give! The more that you know what the most important things you want to do, go, eat, see, etc., the better off you will be when you arrive. And I speak from experience when I say this! 

Plus, you know that last minute question when you go to finalise buying an airline ticket online? The one that says: ‘Do you want to buy trip insurance?’ 

Click yes, and buy it!! I cannot tell you how many times, especially this past year, 2020, that having bought that insurance was a relieving factor. 

I mean this in multiple senses because the more versatile your clothing and gear, the less you will need as each item can serve multiple purposes! Less is more. Packing less, means carrying less, and having less to worry about. : ) 

This is perhaps the most important tip that I can give. Whether you are solo traveling or with a couple of friends, ensuring that you/you all leave, travel, and return safe is KEY! Everyone always hears horror stories about how they got robbed on the metro, had their handbag stolen, were pick pocketed, or were bamboozled by some taxi driver. But how can these things be avoided? 

They can be avoided by being: smart – ie. keeping your valuables stowed away and out of sight; vigilant – don’t let your guard down, be mindful of those around you, and scan what is going on around you; observant – when you are visiting an unfamiliar place, take a few minutes and see what is happening around you. If you see that the people from there are avoiding doing something, you probably should too. Use these tips wherever you are, and I promise you will have a safer and better experience! 

Budgeting: Where to stay & how to get there

March 2021 – 

I think we can all agree that ‘staying within your means’ is a lot easier said than done, but a good place to start is by doing a rough calculation of what known expenses you will incur while traveling and then rounding them off as larger costs. For example, if my bus fare is actually 33 euros, then I will budget it in at 50 euros, thus I will ensure that I have a buffer between what I have and what I actually will spend. By doing this, it ensures that I have more than enough available for any unexpected expenses that I may incur. This is just one example, but imagine if you were going to Valencia for 3 days, and you rounded all of your expenses up, then you’d A) have more money afterwards than you expected, and B) stay well within your means. 

For me, budgeting is one of my most valuable skills!! I budget absolutely everything!! I am constantly thinking ahead about what sort of things I will have to pay for or will need money for, and how much I will be able to save in the meanwhile. Saving, like my dad says, is the single best thing you can do for yourself! Through planning out my available funds, I am decreasing my stress load, meaning less worry while at my destination(s)! 

When it comes to traveling, your two biggest expenses are almost always going to be where you are staying, and how you are going to get to your destination(s), but they don’t have to be!

Plan ahead: do more & worry less

March 2021 – 

Planning your itinerary is a no brainer, and one of the most stress relieving tips I can give! By knowing what is most important to you on a journey, in terms of what you want to dowhere you want to gowhat/how you want to eatwhat you want to see, etc., the better off you will be when you arrive. I speak from experience when I say this! 

Figuring out what time you have will enable you to do more and ultimately have less worry when you arrive to your destination. By establishing the arrival/departure time needed, allowances for those random delays that always happen, and time to/at/between destinations for sightseeing ahead of time, you will feel like a free bird when you arrive! Of course, nothing ever goes perfectly, but then again how would it be fun otherwise? The better you map out the places you want to go and the things you want to do prior to arriving, the better your experience will be. 

Minimize: Pack lighter & Smarter

March 2021 — 

If you talk to just about anyone who has had to pack for a major trip, to study abroad, or to move, they will say that packing was one of the hardest parts of their adventure! This is because everyone overthinks and overanalyses what they think they will need, what they might need, and what they actually need. I myself am guilty on all accounts of ‘overpacking,’ and that is why I have forced myself to change and break that habit as best I can! 

To be a ‘minimalist’ is not nearly as easy as it sounds for most, but if you can limit the electronics, clothing, outerwear, shoes, etc. that you need, then you can adapt to packing lighter and smarter. LESS IS MORE!! I mean this in multiple senses because the more versatile your clothing and gear, the less you will need as each item can serve multiple purposes! Plus the more valuable each item will be to you!

Packing less, means carrying less, and having less to worry about.    : )

Be Smart, Vigilant & Observant

March 2021 — 

This is perhaps the most important tip that I can give. Whether you are solo traveling or with a couple of friends, ensuring that you/you all leave, travel, and return safe is KEY! Everyone always hears horror stories about how they got robbed on the metro, had their handbag stolen, were pick pocketed, or were bamboozled by some taxi driver. But how can these things be avoided? 

They can be avoided by being: smart – ie. keeping your valuables stowed away and out of sight; vigilant – don’t let your guard down, be mindful of those around you, and scan your surroundings; observant – when you are visiting an unfamiliar place, take a few minutes and see what is happening around you. If you see that the people from there are avoiding doing something, you probably should too. Use these tips wherever you are, and I promise you will have a safer and better experience!