Bratislava, Slovakia's capital, is so small that you can see almost everything in just 18 hours. But at the same time, this small city is so charming that 18 hours can feel too short. Its cobbled streets are romantic. Its old churches and buildings will make you feel like you're living in a different era. Its diverse architecture will give you a peek of its colorful history. It's not as crowded as its famous neighbors Vienna, Prague and Budapest. It is the kind of laid-back city where you'd want to chill for a bit.
The best part? Its beer and food are not as expensive as other European cities, that it would make you question why this city is actually the third richest region of the European Union by GDP. Surprise, surprise, I only spent 53 euros here for everything, including a good beer and a private room in a posh neighborhood ;-)
Here's how I managed to survive in Bratislava for 18 hours with 53 euros:
Solo traveled 4665.8 kilometers by trains, buses, and trams.
Walked, hiked, and ran 436.12 kilometers.
Stayed in 17 different homes/apartments/hotels.
Explored 9 lovely countries (+3 for layovers and border crossings) in 36 days.
I’m thankful for surviving another crazy trip and for bringing home beautiful lessons that would definitely stay with me for a longer time than my total # of bus hours. Hopefully this list would encourage you to explore the world (and even try solo traveling):
Six years of dating can be tiring. From boring and just ok... to fun and unforgettable, I think I have had a colorful dating history. My friends would always tell me that I should stop being too picky so I could finally settle with a boyfie. But you know what? This long and dragging dating phase has taught me that, as exhausting as it can be, it helped me a lot to realize what I exactly want in a man and in a relationship.
Fastforward to 2018, I can finally say that I had the best and longest date-- the kind of date that I can finally be proud of and make a semi-cheesy post on my website. Apologies to my previous dates :-P
But before jumping to my best date ever story, here is a little background on how I ended up with my hunk date. (Disclaimer: No monetary agreement was made, only hypnosis :-)) )
Imagine a hike that starts with an altitude of 1230 meters then ends all the way down to the beautiful Libyan Sea. From high up the White Mountains with views of slopes covered with snow... down to the calming sight of this blue blanket:
Hiking Europe's second longest gorge was definitely one of my most memorable adventures while solo traveling in Europe.
I have never imagined myself solo hiking for sixteen kilometers in a foreign land... but I think that I've chosen the best place to hike like this.
Una sa lahat, sasabihin ko na baka mas ‘masaklap’ pa ang aking kalagayan kaysa sa’yo. Halos anim na taon na akong single. Tatlong Valentine’s Day na rin ang nakalipas na ‘matamlay’ ang aking hapunan sa pinaka-kinasusuklaman mong araw. Animnapu’t apat na lalaki (Oo, binilang ko ngayon!) na ang aking na-date alang-alang sa aking paghahanap ng ‘The One.’ Hindi ko na mabilang kung gaano karami na ang lalaking nagpakirot ng aking puso. Ako siguro ‘yung huling taong aasahan mong naniniwala pa sa pag-ibig.
I have been stalking you for quite some time now.
My fingers have memorized each letter of your name out of habit.
I have picked up tiny bits and pieces of you as if those are clues and trails of your character.
And somehow, I feel like I already know you.
Just so you know, I have examined you carefully--
I signed up for a full marathon last August, just because I wanted to feel that euphoria of crossing the finish line.
As a writer for a sports show, I've written about it too many times in my life. But I never knew the actual feeling of 42.195 kilometers. The closest I got to a full mary was 33 kilometers of trail, when my evil diarrhea successfully 'DNFed' my 50-kilometer trail race.
After bouts of asthma and laziness, I finally got crazy and signed up for TBR Dream Marathon. Suddenly, I had something to look forward to.
I hate being a girl sometimes.
During days when I’m trapped with too much feelings
Emotion after emotion swirling and swirling
Turning me into a disgusting, cowering, delicate, and fragile monster
I am in total surrender to every turn of my hormonal blend
I am a slave to this brutal switch that breaks from one mood to another
I am caught in the tides
I have lost control.
A sunset view. A camel ride. Sand dunes. And festive music.
Who wouldn't want to skip this lovely combination?
Prior to my trip in India, I have only seen a camel once in my entire life... and the poor animal was just confined inside a zoo. So when I learned that India has the 18th largest desert in the world called Thar Desert or The Great Indian Desert, I knew that I had to include it in our itinerary.
”Pain is temporary. Quitting is forever”
I’ve heard this mantra in races but I did not realize that this can also be applied in the search for my elusive soulmate... by the generous people around me. Temporary pain brought by their unwavering hunt for “the one.” And with six long years of their dedicated prayers and blind date suggestions, it seems that the world will not quit on my ‘lonesome’ heart.
Being single can be funny, especially when you’re surrounded by concerned citizens who are trying their best to end my (non-existent) misery.
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