Reflections on our travels...
Denver, Colorado has been our home base for the past year and a half. We've been traveling as much as possible, but we just can't get enough, and that's why...
Manda and I have traveled to many beautiful places and met dozens of amazing people in the past three years, but when planning our next adventure, we have never considered revisiting a place because we would rather continue exploring new locations. Then there was Costa Rica. It was different for us. We fell in love with the jungle, and everything changed. The salty, warm water, the humid jungle air, and the sense of family in the community there sent us on a spiritual awakening.
Everything about this trip feels like fate. Beginning with the moment I bought the flights on a whim – my coworker forwarded me an email with discounted flights to Costa Rica in November, and I immediately texted Leah, “Hey, wanna go to Costa Rica for Thanksgiving?” Of course, she was in.
As we drove through miles and miles of completely empty land as well as huge cities packed full of people, I began to realize how small we are. I thought about how we often take life way too seriously. I had been working 60+ hours a week at my job and never spending time doing things for myself or living the life I wanted to be living – such a waste! We only get this one chance to live our best lives. What a waste it would be to not make the absolute most of it. What a waste it would be to live for other people, to make others happy before yourself, to never travel because you are scared, to not take a chance on love because you could have your heart broken, to not work hard to find a job you enjoy because it's easier to settle. I want to live a life where I wake up everyday and love who I am surrounded by and love what I am doing to make money.
I spent Labor Day weekend in Alaska with my cousin, Caitlin. I had been looking forward to this trip for quite some time -- I'd heard of how beautiful Anchorage is in the summer season and Caitlin and I had been discussing the sights and activities we were going to explore while I was there. However, nothing prepares for you for the astounding glory that surrounds Alaska until you are physically soaking it in.
Here we go... The last leg of the Manning Sister Europe Trip! Note that we switched it up a bit on the last one and Leah let me have my turn to have my entry appear first. ;) We hope you've enjoyed following our adventures - we certainly appreciate everyone who has been reading! This isn't the end, though, of the Sisters That Stray Together. We will be posting another blog soon about our reflections on the trip as whole, and posting updates on our Summer 2016 travel plans!
It has been particularly difficult to find time to sit down and write. Leah and I have been going nonstop to the point that we're just now sitting down to write about Venice and Munich while in a cafe in Amsterdam, several trips and countries later... Speaking of, it's been pretty difficult to keep track of what country we're in. Multiple times in the past week and a half we've looked at each other and asked, "Where are we again?" I wish I could tell you about Amsterdam right now because I've been so enchanted by this city, but that will have to wait. Now: Venice and Munich.
Manda and I were so anxious to arrive here in Cinque Terre based off the pictures and research we had done. I can say it has completely lived up to my expectations. It was exactly what I was wanting: an Italian coastal escape.
Here we are in Paris, France, our first stop on our European adventure. We are sipping on red wine as we sit in a neighborhood bar and reflect on our time spent in this beautiful city.
Tomorrow my sister and I will embark on our three week adventure across Europe...