If you've talked to me at all in the last five months, chances are you've heard me tell at least a few stories about my time abroad. Many of my favourite stories involve the inexpensive means of transportation I used, especially night buses. I enjoyed the experience of travelling by bus because it gave me the opportunity to see more of the countries I was driving through. Like, Slovenia. I barely set foot in the country at the border to get my passport stamped, but I saw the gorgeous countryside and added it on my list of places to visit.
Here are my tips of items to bring when travelling when night bus:
-A neck pillow (preferably one with a hook that you can clip on to the backpack).
-An eye mask (I can never sleep when I see a lot of lights on and when the sun comes up. A mask helps immensely).
-A Kindle or book. (On my most recent night bus ride I alternated between reading Lord of the Rings and a non-fiction book about ancient Babylon under the reign of Nebuchadnezzar).
-A reading light (This way you won't keep everyone else up if all you want to do at 2 AM is read about ancient Babylon).
-Other electronic devices (Like phones or laptops and Kindles for said electronic devices).
-A really good travel-themed playlist (I still associate certain songs with certain trips).
I highly recommend travel by night bus at least once!
Sometimes (or actually a lot of the time) I get really, really obsessed with a book or series. Such happened with the Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare. The trilogy is a prequel to her slightly more well-known Mortal Instruments series. I love both series, but Infernal Devices is set is in Victorian London instead of modern day New York, so that gives it a slight edge. Also, the characters are really complex and the plot even more surprising. I finished the second book on Friday and started the third book Saturday. I fell asleep reading it both Saturday and Sunday nights and spend seven hours today reading it until I finished. I loved the epilogue; it was such a great ending! I don't want to give anything away, but go read it so I can discuss it with you!
Along with my adventures in reading, I also took an adventure of my own to Boulder. Conveniently enough, Boulder Bookstore is a three-story independent bookstore. On Saturday, I spent over an hour and half looking at various books and adding a copious amount to my already massive reading list. Without even looking for it, I found the only copy of the Shadowhunter's Codex in the bookstore. For those of you unfamiliar with the Infernal Devices and Mortal Instruments series, the Codex is the history and guidelines for Shadowhunters, which characters frequently reference. I talked myself out of it and settled for a $3.50 copy of Gulliver's Travels instead. When I returned the next day, however, the Codex was still there so I took that as a sign that I should buy it. I'll probably start reading it tonight. It has some illustrations as well!
Now, I'll stop talking about the books and turn my attention to tea! Our first stop in Boulder was the Celestial Seasonings tea factory. It is one of my favorite brands of American-made tea. The factory tours are free, there is a little station to sample hot and iced teas before and after the tours, and everyone is sent home with a sample of tea bags. The tour was really neat and informative. I especially enjoyed the mint room, where the smell of mint really cleared out my sinuses! It smelled like Christmas!
For dinner, we visited Native Foods Café, an all-vegan chain. I had watermelon fresca, blackened tempeh tacos, and a carrot crème cupcake. The best part was the fun paintings on the walls, including the elephants in the bathroom and their detailed explanation why!
Saturday night, we explored the Pearl Street mall. Outdoor malls make shopping slightly more enticing! On Sunday, we hiked a bit at Chautauqua Park, which is one of the few remnant Chautauquas from the original adult education movement. Then, we visited the Leanin' Tree Art Gallery and Sculpture Garden and admired the western and cowboy themed artwork. I also got a bit distracted by all of the gorgeous Christmas cards in the gift shop. All of the cards are made right at the gallery! We ended our trip in Boulder with a Banjo Billy bus tour. The tour was not only about the sights, but also ghost stories and trivia. The house in the bottom right corner imported their fence from Pittsburgh (near my hometown!) in the 1800s. Instead of typical bus seats, the bus had crazy couches and saddles. It was a lot of fun!
Colorado is such a gorgeous state and I am making a point to visit several cities this summer. Any suggestions as to which one I should visit next?
Hi, I’m Crystal! I love to travel and am currently a graduate student in Scotland. You’ll get all the best tips and insights from my experiences as a former ice-skating coach in Iceland and former study abroad student. Of the 27 countries I have visited, a type 1 diabetes diagnosis has been the strangest land yet. Type 1 has not slowed down my travels and you'll learn how to take type 1 with you on the road! You can connect with me further on Instagram @CrystalChilcott, or send me ideas of where I should travel next via email: firstname.lastname@example.orgHappy Travels, Crystal
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