Today I visited grandma and grandpa and we enjoyed “Kaffee und Kuchen” as we say in Germany, and that means enjoying coffee and cake. But it’s not to be taken literally, because I don’t like coffee and I always drink something else. I ate a “Bienenstich”, that’s a bee sting cake and very delicious. I believe “Kaffe und Kuchen” time is very similar to the british tea time, it’s more about coming together to chat. We talked about our family history today, and grandpa told me that one of his nephew lives in Peru since a long time already because he married his love of life. His nephew is ship’s captain, that’s how he found his love somewhere else. My grandpa doesn’t have a lot of contact to him, but it was an interesting story anyway and pretty new to me.
Grandma talked about Sweden again because her ancestors are Swedish, but I always knew this. I saw several countries in Europe, including Denmark, but I told my grandma that it’s a shame that I’ve never been to Sweden. Grandma and grandpa continued, and told me that they have been in Denmark, in Norway and Sweden. Grandpa and his band played on ships before they settled with their music locally in Northern Germany. He told me how they saw different seaports in Northern Europe, he told me how he liked Bornholm, the small Danish island in the Baltic Sea. But grandma and grandpa did also travel to Scandinavian countries during their holidays when I was not born. I like to listen to these stories and it is causing travel lust. Yeah, traveling again? It’s long overdue because I care too much about other things.
I did save money again since a long time now, mainly because I am in the market for some things on my wish list. Most of the time I stick with the plan and don’t get myself something that isn’t on my wish list. There are several small items on my wish list that will come last because they are easy goals anyway, but there are some big things on the list that take a lot longer and I like to climb difficult hills first. I am in the market for photography gear of course, I am especially interested in two lenses that would cost one grand each. The third difficult item on the wish list is a new guitar and would cost as much if not a bit more. It’s not possible to get all three things at once and that is not even my goal, I do just aim for one of the three things. I told myself to make a decision when I am extremely close to be able to afford one of the items. I am at 70% on that mission and I can slow down because I tried to accomplish it before summer, and I am more than on time.
When I take a look at my wish list, I see things that I want to use for a long time and that’s how my brain basically defines the word “value”. But I also had it happen to me that my brain did send impulses like “Look, you could just take the money to go on a journey, so why don’t you travel, huh?”. I had this today again when I listened to grandma and grandpa. I don’t have this often, but a half-year ago when a friend told me how awesome his one week trip to Austria was, it was the same. Over the last months when I was bored, I started to research and could find out that many trips would cost less than I actually thought. In other words, if I would kill my piggy bank right now, there would be quite some destinations in Europe where I could spend a week or just a weekend. I told this my grandma today and said “You know, I’d like to get out of here for a week but to me it feels like burning money for nothing other than impressions” and my grandma replied “With that way of thinking you won’t see something with your own eyes”.
I think she is right. It’s not that I didn’t see anything in Europe, but it’s definitely true that I did care more about my own front yard over the last decade because it was a cheaper way of living. What did I see so far in Europe? Well, I have been to South France several times in my life and enjoyed the time we did spend in Argelès-sur-Mer, Perpignan, Le Perthus and other places near the Pyrenees. I’ve been to Spain during our holidays in France, as we just had to drive over the Pyrenees to get there. I’ve been to the Netherlands and liked Amsterdam a lot. I was in Denmark since this is very close to our federal state Schleswig-Holstein. So, we did spend most of our holidays in France back then and it was fine, but apart from that I don’t have a big track record when it comes to visiting different European countries. Maybe my grandma is right, I would probably rather spend a grand on something that I can hold in my hands, rather than spending it on impressions. To get out there, I would definitely have to change my mindset. It’s not easy, I’d like to do it, but I have difficulties to spend money for it.
What would be my bucket list? I’ve seen Denmark as said, but I’ve never been to the small island Bornholm but I’d like to see this place. The number one is, Stockholm in Sweden, I really want to see this place in my life not only because of the city but also because the surrounding national parks and real wildlife! Generally, I want to see different places in Sweden because I want to see the country of grandma’s ancestors and because they do still have true and wide areas of nature there where I could hike like an insane person. Hiking? I want to see Norway and the Fjords and Finland! A friend shared his impressions, images and videos that he got during his time in Austria, Salzburg and without question that place deserves a spot on my bucket list. I’d like to see different places in Switzerland as well. I’d like to see England, Ireland but especially Scotland due to the nature there. I would want to see the Faroe Islands and Iceland. Not sure if I am made for Greenland, but I would take that challenge. Hopping from island to island, I jump right to the big one and visit Canada!
I could go on and on, as everyone else too, I would basically want to visit a ton of countries if I could. I think only political situations would stop me to visit certain countries, otherwise I do think that we have a hell of a lot interesting places in our world, from desert through the jungles over hills, water and through cities. If right next to me or far away, I definitely could go on and the bucket list would be extremely long. Will I change my plan now and visit one of the countries that are close to me? Probably not, because I usually stick with my initial plans. But maybe I should really set up a second piggy bank to save for holidays as well. I maybe can not see every place, but I could see new places once in a time. To be honest, I’ve never been a huge travel fan. The time you spend somewhere else is good, but the journey to the place and back home was often rather stressful in my opinion. Maybe there are people who constantly get the travel bug, I do rather get the feeling less frequently and I value other things that you can do with the same money much more. But yeah, sometimes even I do get the yen to see distance places.
Part 1 of the post series “Musing About This And That” can be found here.