Wayfarer: Sarah McMullen

sarahmcI’ve known Sarah in one way or another for the majority of my life. Our elementary schools always played against each other in sports, so we were constantly seeing each other growing up. Then when high school came, Sarah and I became proper friends once we started to share classes. Now as adults, we swap travel stories.

There’s an interesting divide in the area we live in. Over a hundred years ago there was one school in a valley. Then that school split into two, with the two locations being located on hills overlooking the original vale. I come from the west side and Sarah the east, so it was only natural for our schools to rival each other when we were kids (“You go to Highland Creek? Ewwww…”).

Throughout high school Sarah and I shared the same group of friends — friends whom, to this day, we still hold dear — and it was with a small group of some of these people that we travelled to Cuba with in the summer of 2012. That trip was awesome and crazy. Sarah, here’s a memento 🙂 (oh, the sunburns…)

cuba

What countries have you visited? Canada, United States, Guatemala, Mexico, Cuba, Netherlands, Scotland, England, Ireland, Italy/Sardinia, France.

What is your favourite place to visit? My favourite place has to be Scotland. I lived in Edinburgh for 2 years and the city just takes my breath away. No matter how many times I visit, when I step off the plane I feel an overwhelming sense of being at home. The city of Edinburgh has a flavor of old world and new which allows you to have all the amenities of modern life, but feel like you are walking around the streets of the 1600’s. I also love the people in Scotland. Everyone is always so friendly and someone is always up for a chat at the pub. The landscape in the highlands is breathtaking and there is so much to do for those who enjoy hiking and outdoor activities. I will always have a special place in my heart for Scotland and that is why it is my all time favourite place to visit.

What’s one thing you’ve learned from your travels? One thing that I have learned is to let go of anxieties and fear and just jump into new experiences with an open mind. It’s so important to live in the moment and be mindful of the experiences that you are having because the instances that impact you and change your life are over in a flash.

What’s one thing you must always bring with you on a trip? This is such a hard question!! I’m torn between music and a camera, but I am going to have to say music. Music (on an iPod or whatever) is a must have for me because I associate memories with songs. There have been so many times that I have heard a certain song and have had a flood of wonderful memories come back into my mind that have brightened my day, brought back intense emotions and made me smile.

What are the top three destinations on your travel bucket list? Just 3? You’re killing me here! 1. Morocco/Egypt 2. Iceland 3. Antarctica

What’s the craziest thing to have happened to you while on a trip? I would have to say that I have been pretty fortunate to not have anything really crazy happen to me on a trip so far (touch wood!) However, if crazy and creepy/gross are interchangeable, then I have a story for you!

When I was backpacking through Italy with my friend Angela, we took the train to Venice thinking that we were going to have a nice, relaxing trip. Well, the trains in Italy are very interesting. We were just enjoying the scenery sitting alone in our little train compartment when a gentleman entered and decided to sit right next to Angela. I thought that this was a little strange, considering the rest of the compartment was open and there was no need to sit right next to another person. Some time went by and I heard Angela whispering and trying to get my attention and I looked over and she was holding her hand up and pointing towards the man sitting beside her. I looked over and the man had his hand all the way down his pants and was making ‘sexual movements’ with his hand. I was in shock and I wasn’t sure whether to laugh or throw up. After a couple more minutes of being thoroughly creeped out, Angela and I grabbed our stuff and left the compartment and sat out in the chairs in the hallway. We proceeded to freak out at what had just taken place in the train compartment, when the same guy came out into the hall and stood right behind Angela again in the hallway, still with his hand down his pants. Needless to say, we couldn’t get off that train fast enough!! At least now we have a great story to tell about the creepy masturbating man on the train to Venice.

sarah

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