Leaving the UK – My 2016 Travel Plans

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So I’m currently on a flight to LA for the beginning of my lil 5-month break from the UK. I started off my trip in typical me fashion, planned the journey to Heathrow then checked the terminal and realised it was actually Gatwick. Good one, Joy. Ever since uni I wanted to do more travelling, and although I’ve had some great holidays and mini travel experiences (looking at you interrail) I haven’t found the time or money for a big trip yet. Then this year I thought, oh wait, I’m 25. I should probably do this thang before I get old and stuff. So here I am, slightly nervous but mostly excited for work and travel and new places and people.
My first stop will be 2 and a half months working at YMCA Camp Oakes, a summer camp for underprivileged kids from different YMCA organisations around California. Presently I don’t know a massive amount about my role at camp, I know that all staff will facilitate 3-6 different activities but I’m yet to hear what mine are. We get a week of training before the kids arrive where I’ll most likely be learning about rock climbing, high ropes, zip line and all those great camp activities. Basically i get to be a big kid for the summer! The camp is up in the mountains near ‘Big Bear City’ – hoping that doesn’t actually mean there will be lots of big bears? No matter I can just do that stick trick from parent trap. Oh wait…

After camp I go straight into an all American road trip. We initially had the grand idea of driving from LA to miami in 2 weeks but then realised that was far too much driving for our liking. So we’ve settled on a western USA road trip up the Californian coast, then to Vegas and the grand canyon. In a convertible Mustang no less. I mean what else?! The plan is to then do a few flights and a few Greyhound buses to see the other American cities of dreams. And then I get 12 days in New York with this one. 12 days!!

It’s long enough that we won’t have to cram all the sights and experiences into a short time, we can spread them out and just chill and live the New York life. New York has been on my list ever since I watched my first episode of friends. Of course I do expect life to be exactly like friends whilst I’m there. And all the cocktails like sex and the city 🍸 I cannot wait to go to proper American diners and eat an unhealthy amount of pancakes and burgers and ice cream and pizza and hello permanent state of food coma. Serious I’m gna come back twice my size cos FOODS.

I’m then getting a cheeky flight to Costa Rica and working my way up to Mexico over a period of 5 weeks.  I haven’t planned this section of my travels in much detail because I want to just go with the flow and get recommendations from people and take it as it comes. I don’t expect to do all the countries in Central America in that time because they  would be very fleeting visits! I’m prioritising Nicaragua because I’ve been intrigued by the culture ever since working at Raleigh, and Belize because it just looks lush. Very excited to be ending in Mexico, again because food is very high on my list and YUM all of the burritos and quesadillas and wrap based foods. Also pinterest was showing me some amazing places in Mexico so that please thanks.

As exciting as all these plans are, I am sad to miss the UK summer. Which sounds ridiculous because I’m going to have summer everywhere, but summer and Christmas are the times where I feel the UK is at its best so it’s a shame to miss it! Obviously I also have a massive case of the fomo for Glastonbury. However I’m sure I will forget all that once I’m out there having the time of my life! See ya on the other side ✌

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