After a whirlwind of travel I am home in Provence settling back into life.  I have thought a lot about these last few trips, being away from home and the desire to travel.  With the world of today, travel has changed.  Many aspects of flying are really no longer glamorous; it requires patience and time to tackle the bustle of the masses, the treachery of the airport process and the usually crowded planes.  I am just thankful each time that I arrive to my destination safely.  By no means am I complaining; I am grateful that I even have the opportunity to travel and consider it a privilege that I never take for granted.  I still think it is magical that we can board a plane and cross the entire world to land at some near or faraway destination.  And it is still bewitching to step foot into the unknown.

What is about wanderlust that infatuates so many?  The allure of new discoveries, the enchantment of unknown cultures or the sheer wonder of exploration?  Traveling provides an escape from the daily routine.  It is enlightening to see and experience a new point of view on life, location and food.  While I have been fortunate to where I have traveled for both work and vacation, I would like to think that no matter the destination, traveling is always a means to further enrich myself.  Experiencing different cultures and different ways of living certainly puts my own life into perspective.  Albeit some trips are more magical or meaningful, more glamorous or luxurious than others, but for me traveling is always a learning experience - mind, body and spirit.  And each voyage always a simple reminder that missing awakens our appreciation.  

England has been on my travel wish list for a long time now.  Although the main reason for me taking this trip did not come to fruition, the end result was time spent with a girlfriend touring the English countryside.  It was beautiful.  Spring was just beginning to blossom and we were enveloped in rich history and humbling nature.  Lush greenness, rolling hills, crumbling castles, classic estates, pristine gardens and probably more sheep then people softly adorning the green countryside in dots of cream.  We moved at a slow pace with no schedule, filling the days with leisurely breakfasts, long walks, small villages, English pubs and even a venture to the rugged coastline painted in a sea of turquoise with cliffs of putty white.  

Simple elements, girl time, talks about everything and nothing, and new discoveries made for a lovely and memorable first trip to England.  I survived the wonky driving and the sun shone more than not.  And although I am always happy to return to Provence, I left the English countryside hoping to one day soon return…