Going somewhere new

Last week we were given a task of going somewhere new and to reflect upon our experience of going to a new place. Did we need to follow directions? How did I get into the place? Did I have to contact someone?
Over the weekend I went to a few new places. One was a restaurant called Svago and the other was my friends flat!

Svago
Ive walked past this restaurant many times, but never really been attracted to go in… the windows are quite dark and it never looks busy (I absolutely can’t handle walking into a restaurant and being the only one eating there!!!) But since my friend started working there she suggestedd why don’t we go? Plus, they had a special offer of two course for £8.95 (We went on Saturday). Also, a few people I know have been there and said its really good. So we went in!
I was pleasantly surprise when I walked in, infront there is a nicely laid out bar, to the left are two person tables and the right, an area for bigger groups of people. And the walls are decorated with what look like spray painted hibiscus flowers. Then the food came! I had a lentil soup followed by pasta in a creamy sauce with chicken and sun dried tomatoes. Absolutely delicious!

My Friends Flat
Obviously I can’t talk about where she actually lives but it was quite funny trying to get there. I’m terrible with directions and because I’ve recently acquired a bus pass, I couldn’t justify getting a taxi there at the time, especially since it was apparently a 5 minute walk from the city centre. Reflecting on it now I should’ve got a taxi! So I got the 38 into town and got off down Church Way. Then the walking began! It was quite funny being that end of town, because only last year I used to live in student halls close by. So I called my friend and asked for her to explain to me how to get to hers. I had her address, but it seemed easier having her talk through it to me than me trying to follow the dodgy maps app on my iPhone. She said it was easier for her to send me a text… so I tried to follow
“From O’Neil’s walk up as if you’re going to walkabout , then when you get to viva Brazil cross the road and walk towards the radison blu hotel, then go under the bridge on your right and cross the road at the traffic lights and turn left under another bridge then you should see the Novotel, go through the metal gate by the Novotel and walk trough the car prk…”
But I got a bit confused where the second bridge she was on about was. So I looked a bit silly waiting dressed for a night out trying to get hold of her stood nearby the British Gas building.. But she said I needed to walk a bit further round a corner and I’d see the bridge she was on about.

I suppose this task was quite a good one as it actually gets one thinking of their behaviour and reactions in a new place. Analysing how one acts makes one realise how well they cope in new environments. And since for our project we are helping out Eco Camping Wales and for many people visiting it will be there first time, it’s useful to reflect on ones actions when exploring somewhere new and how that experience can be as smooth and enjoyable as possible.

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Agent for Change

We were introduced to Wendy, Neil and Stuart yesterday, who are running a project called Agent For Change. Wow my mind is slightly boggled by a concept of creativity that is completely new to me.
Our project is about sustainability. To put it simply, using our creativity to help others with out being harmful to humanity. We will be working with a client and not for them, offering our ideas and continuously communicating to bring forward a solution to a problem.
The client being Eco Camping Wales. They need our help to provide campers with a sustainable environment, but be able to provide for their family too.
I couldn’t be happier to be involved in this project. Not only is it real life, I’m actually learning a crucial skill which will, ultimately help humankind.

Where do I start?

As I write this post I am sitting with many layers on in our dining room listening to the heavy rain tap against the windows. A far cry from India! It’s surreal just over a month ago I was sat outside in the gorgeous sunlight writing in my travel journal, with beeping and calls for prayer as background noise.
Where do I begin? Very naughtily, I only just uploaded the pictures from my camera to my laptop last night, so my last thoughts before I drifted off to sleep consisted of silhouettes, carved elephants and patterned ceilings. So rather than tell you about my trip in chronological order, I think I will write about the exeriences as they pop into my head…

First off is the Pichola Temple in Udaipur. We travelled to Udaipur for the second half of the trip, and this was on our last day there. We hadn’t much planned so I wanted to explore the town by Lake Pichola a bit more. And as we walked towards the temple, I immediately wanted to enter! We had to walk up some steps first, and past ladies selling beautiful fresh flowers. Then we took our shoes off and wandered in…

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An ornate carving from the Pichola temple in Udaipur. Elephants are everywhere! I am researching the reason they are so sacred, as I couldn’t go to a single place without seeing a sculpture, illustration or carving of them.

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Another close up of the Pichola temple. I was blown away by the craftsmanship it took to build this masterpiece.

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A panarama shot of Pichola temple. There wasn’t a single moment when I wasn’t awed by this place. It was by far the best temple I visited.

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I think I connected with this temple, because when I went inside there was actually a Hindu ‘service’. People were singing and dancing, instruments were being played. The atmosphere was hair-tingling. Never have I felt so emotional in a religious place. I wasn’t able to take photographs inside the building, but I managed to record the singing outside

Our trip to Rajasthan

Why did I want to go to India? Well why not- for starters. I couldn’t give this opportunity a miss. As I imagine it now all the colours start to appear in my head, burnt oranges to aqua blues. I wanted to see the difference in their culture compared to ours. A culture shock. It was also the first country I’d visited which is the least Westernised. The closest, geographically, I’d been to India was when I went to the UAE.
Visiting Rajasthan was an unforgettable experience. Travel is something that can’t be taken away from you. No matter how rich or poor you are, you can only take with you your experiences, with memory they are the only things that are permanent in our short lives on this planet.

In the taxi travelling  to Rajasthan from New Delhi Airport

In the taxi travelling to Rajasthan from New Delhi Airport

I’m back!

Firstly, I’m wishing you all a healthy and happy 2015! And hopefully you’ve had time to relax over the Christmas period.

It’s been a while since I’ve blogged… So I’ve got a lot to share.

In the time since I last logged on, lots of things have been running through my mind, I wasn’t very well a few months ago so it took it’s toll on my work. On the bright side I’ve been to India and I’m going to Morocco in a few days!

Stay tuned for some colourful posts!