Our initial plan was to spend this summer in Southeast Asia. Our oldest is on a school trip to China for three weeks. We thought it would be fun to join him at the end and take it from there; however, the logistics of it turned into a nightmare. The more I tried to coordinate, the harder it seemed to get. I don’t believe in fate but I finally decided that this was proving too stressful to pursue.
Plan B: Eastern Europe, not too shabby, right? I managed to find some cheap tickets to Moscow returning from Istanbul and pounced. As usual, we’re trying to leave our plans as open as we dare. That is a hard proposition for me: I am the kind of person who likes dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s, so doing research and composing lists of things to see comes naturally. This is actually one of my biggest concerns about this trip: I don’t want to overwhelm the kids but this is such an opportunity that I’m reluctant to leave any stone unturned. There is only a limited number of churches and museums you can visit before they all begin blending in though, so we’re going to have to simply skip some of them. As always, time seems too short to do everything we want to do. This is where I begin fantasizing about taking the entire year off like so many others are doing but I’ve learned from previous trips that I do miss home after a while and that one summer at a time seems to work out best for us thus I will just have to learn to say no to every last must-see attraction.
This is the itinerary we’ve worked out so far but please don’t hold us to it, we won’t:
Russia: Moscow (Sudzal), St. Petersburg
Poland: Warsaw, Krakow (Auschwitz)
Czech Republic: Prague
Romania*: Brasov (Cuj-Napoca?), Bucharest
Croatia: Rovinj/Pula, Zadar, Plitvice Lakes NP, Dubrovnik*
Bosnia & Hercegovina: Mostar *
Montenegro: Kotor *
Albania : Drymades *
Greece: Athens, Santorini*
Turkey: Kos*, Bodrum, Pammukale*, Istanbul
The asterisks are for the places we really hope we can get to but might need to drop from the itinerary if time runs short. There is also the possibility that we will have to reconsider visiting some of these places as the situation in Turkey isn’t ideal at the moment and Greece seems to have cut some public transportation services due to economic woes.
It is an ambitious itinerary and we know we won’t get to all these places so why make such an itinerary in the first place? Not to drive us insane but rather to have a map, an idea of what kinds of experiences we’re looking for and where we might find them. It is only by dreaming big that we figure out what we truly desire. Join us, follow us, guide us, let’s go explore this wonderful world of ours!