The Twelfth Day of Christmas: Gift Ideas for the Travel Lover

I am finally getting into the holiday spirit – and why not throw out a few ideas to those seeking to find the perfect gift for a travel lover?

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Over the past few months, I have had many great sounding recommendations of travel themed books to read. Here are a few suggestions from some of the readers of my blog, and myself:

1. Jo Nesbo (author – read all of his books in order).

– Recommended by me

2. Notes from a Small Island by Bill Bryson

– Recommended by beingoutthere

3. At Play In The Fields Of The Lord by Peter Matthiessen

– Recommended by kevin meyers

4. Dark Star Safari by Paul Theroux

– Recommended by Arundhati

5. Snow Leopard by Peter Matthiessen

– Recommended by kevin meyers

6. Discovery Road by T. Garrett, A. Brown, and Sir Ranulph Fiennes

– Recommended by beingoutthere

7. End Of The Earth: Voyage To Antarctica by Peter Matthiessen

– Recommended by kevin meyers

8. Art of Travel by Alain de Botton

– Recommended by beingoutthere

9. In A Sunburned Country by Bill Bryson

– Recommended by kevin meyers

10. On the Road by Jack Kerouac

– Recommended by iamatticusfinch

11. Down The Nile: Alone In A Fisherman’s Skiff by Rosemary Mahoney

– Recommended by kevin meyers

12. Blue Highways by William Least-Heat Moon

– Recommended by kevin meyers

13. The Education Of Little Tree by Forrest Carter

– Recommended by kevin meyers

14. I Wonder as I Wander by Langston Hughes

– Recommended by transplantedtatar

15. Love In The Time Of Cholera and 100 Years Of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

– Recommended by kevin meyers

16. Apples Are From Kazakhstan by Christopher Robbins

– Recommended by kevin meyers

Thank you to all of you bloggers that helped in formulating this list!

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year…(not)

Classes are done.

Warm sunny days are here.

Ice Cream truck is rolling around.

Kids are studying.

Teachers are drowning.

Yes – I am drowning. Drowning in PAPERS!

Final projects….can’t wait for the exams, you can triple that pile!

I just received final projects from my 5 geography classes and had quite the workout lugging them home to mark.

Pretty sure that my breaks, in between marking lovely research projects, will consist of me dreaming about my summer plans. And I am pretty sure that it will be the theme of my posts for the next few weeks.

Come onnnnn summer!!!!!

Good reading ahead!

My sister pointed me to a very neat social cataloging site where you can, “see what your friends are reading. Keep track of what you’ve read and organize your books into virtual bookshelves. Join a book club to discuss your favorite novels…”. 

The site is called Goodreads and it’s actually quite neat. It managed to keep me distracted for a few minutes yesterday, and I was able to look at a long list of travel literature recommended books, after I rated a few books that I enjoyed from that genre.

The results left me drooling for some reads:

I also set a reading challenge for myself for 2012: 30 books (starting as of yesterday). Me thinks that’s quite do-able.

Very neat, and a very good way to waste some time, almost as good at wasting my time as Pinterest!

Happy reading!

Conclusion: The Lost Girls

Last week, I mentioned that I was currently reading a travel novel called The Lost Girls. It was a great break from all the murder mysteries I have been reading lately, that’s for sure!

Overall, it was such an entertaining book. It left me giggling, reflecting, jealous, but mostly, it left me drooling.

Three good friends quit their jobs and spend an entire year traveling around the globe. They completed, “60,000 miles around the world, from the mountains and jungles of South America to the beaches of Australia, passing through Kenya, India, Southeast Asia, and New Zealand”.

Jennifer Baggett, Holly Corbett and Amanda Pressner

The book was able to keep my interest and actually make me laugh out loud, which is a hard thing to do when by myself. It was divided into different sections for each lag of their trip, and by chapter, with the three girls rotating writing tasks.

My favorite of the three, or should I say – most relatable, was Holly. She always found a way to analyze her surroundings and get a real feel for the culture. Holly really seemed to appreciate each person she encountered and tried her best to enjoy every experience. I cannot believe she made it through a month at a somewhat suspect ashram in India. Really, I have never heard anything that great about these places. Her patience and peace-keeping personality very much sounded like myself.

Not to take away anything from the other girls. They both had unique personalities on their travels. Jen (adventure/thrill-seeking) and Amanda (dedicated/out-going/fun-loving) would be people I would love to travel with. They were full of energy and loved to dance. I must say, as I mentioned above about being jealous…it was mostly due to their night of dancing to reggaeton music in South America.

The danger with reading this book, the only negative aspect, one warning for anyone reading……

You will have the strongest desire to pick up everything and LEAVE to your nearest airport.

The Lost Girls

Since I have completed two Jo Nesbo books in a row (think mystery, murder, depressing), and am waiting for the next two to be delivered, I decided to lighten up my read with something a bit more entertaining and happy.

The Lost Girls, by Jennifer Baggett, Holly C. Corbett and Amanda Pressner is a story about three friends who all decide to quit their jobs, leave their boyfriends, and apartments in New York City and set out for the unknown. True story! And it’s divided by one of the authors per chapter, all with a different outlook on their adventure.

The book caught my eye in Chapters after the holidays, sitting on display in the travel literature section (my fav!). First thing I did was giggle, since the title reminded me of my friend Katie and myself getting lost on every second street all over Italy 2 summers ago.

I have currently finished the first 2 chapters as the girls catch me up on how their lives were back in NYC, working hard and feeling restless. Can’t wait to read on!

The website for these three girls looks amazing. They have a blog, photos of their trip, and even guest writers describing their own adventures of traveling around the world.

I’ll get back to you with my review of the book, when I can complete it. So far so good and I can’t wait to hear about their adventures in Australia, passing through Kenya, India, Southeast Asia, and New Zealand.