I went as a third year PhD student, my first time visiting North America and one of my first times travelling internationally alone. I also went after working (in a PhD-focused sense) on at least one weekend day of each weekend over the previous three years. I think I took a few days off each Christmas, but holidays weren't really in my nature. (Oh, how Mr Bite has changed me!) I had a student's budget, but my flights and some accommodation were paid for out of research funds.
|Seattle space needle|
I flew to Seattle, which from Western Australia is a very long way, and was dazzled by the accents, the scenery, the hills (steep!), the prices (cheap!) and the food. I was there for a conference, and I was also dazzled by that - so many great researchers, so many great talks.
And then, I flew to New York.
|So much in so small a place! - New York|
Conference over, I had 3 weeks of holiday ahead of me. I can still remember the dizziness, walking around New York, of that freedom and exhilaration and I'm on my own on the other side of the world and I don't have to work or check emails or do anything at all I don't want to.
I'm not sure you can ever recreate moments like that. I only had 4 days in New York before flying on to Canada (Toronto) and then the U.K., but between it and Seattle I got a taste of America and I liked it.
Why am I reflecting on this now? Well, I have been a little quiet about the things that are keeping me busy this month and thus preventing me from partaking in Vegan MoFo. Today, I am actually flying to the U.S.
Like last time, it will be a very long flight. Also like last time, I am starting with a conference, before proceeding to holiday - 2 weeks instead of 3 this time around. I don't think I'll have the luxury of no email checking on this occasion, but in the context of all our travel over the last 2 years, it is luxury enough to be going.
|New York - central park|
So, I shall next say hello from Washington D.C. . I'm looking forward to adding a few new American experiences to my limited repertoire, this time around with Mr Bite for company. I'll keep you updated!