Berlin Dreaming.

I don’t know about you, but my entire Instagram, Facebook and Snapchat feeds are absolutely bursting with people on overseas holidays.

All of the amazing photos made me incredibly jealous and also pretty nostalgic for my Europe trip last year. I cannot believe it has been over a year since I got home (close to a year and a half!) so I decided to have a little scroll through my Europe album on my laptop, which is where I found these beauties that I couldn’t help but share.

The photos are were all taken in Berlin which I visited at the very end of my trip. I had 2 days there with my Topdeck family (miss you guys) before we said goodbye and then 1 night with my travel buddy before she flew home, leaving me to fend for myself for 4 days. Now I’m not quite sure why the hell I thought I’d be okay to take on Berlin by myself for 4 days after a month and a half of being surrounded by people… I’d also spent the better half of the year before I left dealing with a depression and anxiety diagnosis (unknown at that point I was actually suffering from social anxiety which made the whole situation worse).

But I did it.

I definitely struggled. I spent 2 nights and an entire day hiding in my AirBnb, only leaving to eat, because I was so scared of what was behind that door. I cried a lot over a 24 hour period and just wished I could go home. But after I calmed down I realised I was in Berlin. I had 2 days left. I could hide or I could go out an explore. So, after a solid few hours of planning train routes and destinations in the city all while convincing myself I would be okay if I left the room, I did it. I also took these wonderful photos along the 2 days I made myself leave the room.

I look at them now and not only am I nostalgic, but I am proud. I have come a really long way since I was travelling. I may still have those kind of days, but the anxiety I feel towards these kinds of social situations doesn’t affect me the way that it did during this 2 months. I’m also proud because I realised after coming home that I had a lot more issues than I thought and I started seeing someone again (which is how I found my fabulous psychologist, Steph). Looking back I realise this was a terrible time for me but also a turning point to making myself better so I will always be thankful for that.

Anyway, enough rambling from me – enjoy some of my favourite photos from Berlin.

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Rent a Bike
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East Side Gallery
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East Side Gallery
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Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe
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Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe
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Brandenburg Gate
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East Side Gallery
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East Side Gallery
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East Side Gallery
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East Side Gallery

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Berlin
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East Side Gallery
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Street Art
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Street Art

Italian nostalgia.

Tiny winding streets, pizza, gelato, pasta, wine & a Europe winter. Need I say more?

I’m feeling incredibly reminiscent of my travels from the start of last year, so I thought I’d throw together a little blog post highlighting my favourite Italy pictures.

Florence - view from Duomo
Florence – view from Duomo
Cinque Terre
Cinque Terre
Florence
Florence
Florence - view from Duomo
Florence – view from Duomo
Cinque Terre - sunset
Cinque Terre – sunset
Siena
Siena
Siena - main square
Siena – main square

Antidote

Long distance flights – it’s a term that sends chills down my spine. Some people love it but for others it’s the thing of nightmares. These tips should help make that long haul a little easier.

1. Stay away from the booze
While the idea of drinking as much free alcohol as your body can handle may seem enticing or like a good way to fall asleep, trust us it’s not.  Alcohol is a depressant and it dehydrates your body. While you’re at it, try and stay away from the coffee. Just like alcohol, coffee will keep you awake and dehydrate you even more.

2. Move around

I know, how far can you move around in what is essentially a giant sardine can? The answer – not far. But making sure you get up and stretch every hour is a great way to keep your blood flowing properly and avoid things like deep vein thrombosis, which is blood clots in your veins, particularly in the large veins of the calf. Take regular toilet breaks and extend your walk up and down the aisles a few times before returning to your seat.

3. Choose your food wisely

There is nothing special about airplane food, and unless you’re flying first class (if so, you don’t need to be reading this, your 12+ hour flight will be a dream) you’re unlikely to be served restaurant quality food. One study by Professors at Yamaguchi University in Japan shows that carb rich foods can make it easier to transition between sleep and eating schedules by inducing insulin secretion.

In the days leading up to your flight, try not to eat anything that’s going to upset your digestive system. There is nothing worse than being trapped in a confined space when someone isn’t feeling 100 per cent.

4. Hydration is your best friend

Fun fact, the relative humidity in a plane drops to nearly zero in just 30 minutes – that’s nearly the same humidity as a desert. To counteract this, start hydrating the day before you start travelling and make sure you drink a lot of water. Kara Mulder, the founder of The Flight Attendant Life blog, says that drinking at least 250 ml’s of water every hour should prevent dehydration. Also try to have a good lip balm and a good moisturiser. It’ll make plenty of difference.

5. Location, location, location

This one comes down to personal preference, but getting the ideal seat on the plane is an essential key to staying sane. Some say a window seat is the best because you won’t get interrupted by those rude people that go to the toilet every 5 minutes. However, we at Voyage think the best seat is the middle row on an aisle. You’ll be able to move around at your own pace and won’t feel so confined!

6. Make like a girl scout and prepare!

Packing your carry on is another key thing to your survival. You want to make sure you have a neck pillow, an eye mask, noise cancelling headphones, toothpaste and a toothbrush, deodorant and plenty of entertainment. You’ll be thankful when you land.

7. Sleep

This point is really self-explanatory. The easiest way to get through a long flight is to try and sleep for as much of it as possible.

 

And really if all else fails, pop a few sleeping tablets and you’ll sleep through the whole nasty ordeal.