Providence, RI

“Where are you going next?”
“Providence, Rhode Island.”

With one exception, every person I said that to made a face that meant ‘ew, why would you want to go there?’

So I wasn’t expecting to like Providence, which was fine because I wasn’t planning to explore it. I’d be arriving late Saturday night and going straight to bed, then working until I got into a cab to go back to the airport on Wednesday afternoon. Work was a conference, and I was staying in the conference hotel, so I’d planned to just spend the whole time in that single building.  Read more

Wednesday Wanderings: The Thames Path

I love London. I always thought I hated it, because it’s a city and I think of myself as predominantly a country person, but I love it. The anonymity, the melting-pot of cultures, the way my little corner of it feels like a community but also most people mind their own business.

I love that it’s a very walkable city, and few areas are more appealing to walk around than the Thames Path.  Read more

So Florence Is Pretty Awesome

I recently went to Italy for the first time. I landed in Bologna, got on a bus to Modena, felt very excited about the trip… and then was intensely disappointed when I discovered that Modena is a shithole.

“What’s wrong with me?” I wondered. “Do I just hate Italy? Am I in a terrible mood for no good reason? Is it because it’s my first time abroad in over a year?”

None of the above, as it turned out. It was just Modena. When I went to Florence a few days later, I discovered breathtaking views, rolling countryside and delectable cuisine.  Read more

How To Make Yourself Work While You’re Travelling

I was in South Carolina. It was 34 degrees outside, which is the hottest I’ve ever been (I’m from Scotland, I’m not used to heat). The sun was shining and there was a glittering pool outside my window, and a giant golden sandy beach stretching for miles just across the road.

I was in Brussels. It was 20 degrees outside and on the way to the hotel I’d walked past several cafes that I wanted to try out. I was there for under 48 hours and I wanted to explore. I’d heard good things about the chocolate shops and the architecture.

I was in Dublin. It was neither 34 nor 20 degrees outside, but it was sunny and I knew there was a good whiskey place up the road. I also knew from prior experience that the Old Library at Trinity College is one of the most beautiful sights I’d ever seen, and I wanted to go back.

But I had to work. So I did. How?

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A Leisurely Stroll Around Dublin

I was in Dublin a few days ago, and it was unseasonably warm (as always seems to be the case when I’m there – I reckon all the talk about bad weather is just a trick so they can keep the beautiful scenery to themselves).

Work was threatening to overwhelm me, and although I wasn’t really up for anything hugely strenuous, I decided that a wander outside would do me good. Especially if it was on the way to a wine shop. Which it was.

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