Ah, tis the time of year when all of my favourite travel writers are recapping the highlights of their year. For me, I adore those posts. They give me a glimpse at how extraordinary a year of travel can be whether you’re traveling full time or when and as you can.
2014 was a big year for me in many ways. Here are some highlights:
- In January got to rediscover the joy of skiing – albeit this ended with a concussion, but I’m determined to get back on that … horse?
- In February I was able to attend the Schmanciest of all fundraisers – Schmancy at the Glenbow Museum featuring none other than Bryan Adams.
- In March I made some new writing companions in the fabulous Kate Larking, Elisa O’Day, Adrienne Long and Jillian Long. They make writing entertaining, that’s for sure.
- In April I trundled up to Edmonton to reconnect with a friend and – of course – head to West Edmonton Mall. I also got to attend the always fabulous Propellus Leadership Awards where I was inspired by volunteers of all walks of life making a difference in my city.
- In May, my Mom, a friend and I took a long weekend in New York City where we indulged in food, discovered what was overrated and underrated, and I got to connect with an old Contiki friend.
- In June I spent 10 days in California for work, which included a long weekend in San Francisco with my Mom. A highlight was the Chinatown Alleyway Tour.
- July was filled with hosting my sister-in-law and her husband at the Calgary Stampede and in our mini-tour of Alberta. I also got to be part of the launch of an incredible program at a nonprofit. It still makes me smile with pride.
- In August I attended When Words Collide, a writers’ conference in Calgary that is both inspiring and challenging (I spoke on a panel!). I also got to chill out with friends at the alternative music festival, X-Fest.
- September (or rather Snowtember as Calgarians will remember it), involved snow, the ElectroDash 5km with a dear friend and a hike in the Rockies with another great friend. I also got to visit the town of Fox Creek in Northern Alberta which is a must for anyone on the way to Grand Prairie. They’ve got an awesome new trail system that I could have spent hours on.
- October was mostly work, work, work getting ready for our trip. I finished work on the 21st then jetted off to Vancouver on the 23rd for the Surrey International Writers’ Conference. There I met authors like Jack Whyte and Diana Gabaldon (I may have done an interview with her that will be posted here in February!!), got to fan-girl all over Smart Bitch Sarah Wendell, and shared a room with an always-smiling, always-fabulous hippie. For David’s birthday on October 30th we had dinner at a rooftop restaurant in Bangkok!
- November was spent walking with elephants, releasing a lantern into a sky on fire, cooking baby sexy Thai food, liaising with lady boys, floating down a river in Laos, exploring the bizarre Buddha Park, and learning to ride a motorbike.
- December has been a mainly Vietnamese month with rainy days in Nha Trang and Hue, taking photos of the stunning Hoi An, trekking and spraining my ankle in Sapa and starting fires on cooking courses. It has also included the sights of Phnom Penh and Koh Rong, though no posts on that as of yet.
All in all, a pretty phenomenal year. I can’t wait for 2015. January will continue with the last month of our adventure, but I’m determined that the travel won’t end there. NO, I’m not abandoning work (AW – I swear I’m coming back!! I promised!!), but I’m determined to find the exotic and fascinating in my own backyard. In September I have a friend’s wedding in Edmonton and I hope to escape to a US destination with a dear friend for a girl’s weekend. Lots of things on the horizon.
I want to say a huge thank you to the family, friends and coworkers who have contributed to this being such a phenomenal year. Lots of love from the bottom of my heart.
Now, I want to know what has been the highlight (travel or otherwise) of your year? Share below.