I don't believe it has to be that way and I've tried to use my annual leave to allow me to retain a sense of adventure and exploration despite my other commitments. A couple of years ago I took five weeks' of it at once and explored Thailand. Since then I've been to America twice, France, Greece, Spain, Jersey and many trips within Britain - Cornwall, the Lake District, the Cotswolds, the Wye Valley and so on.
My trip to Thailand really was what one might describe as a 'trip of a lifetime' - backpacking through jungles, sleeping on night trains, visiting ancient temples, bartering in the night markets, swimming in waterfalls and exploring archipelagos with iridescent seas - snorkelling coral reefs and sleeping in sleeping bags on the beach. It gave me my first proper taste of freedom and a snapshot of a simpler life; clothes folded into a backpack with a camera, a book and a wallet rather than vast wardrobes of clothes and shoes and material possessions.
|this was taken in krabi - part of our islands tour|
We are lucky enough to own Scarlett, a VW T5 Transporter. Kitted out with a full width double bed, lots of cupboards and drawers, a portable gas cooker and (thanks to Tom's Mum and Dad for a very practical Christmas present), a portable toilet! We spent three weeks touring France in it in 2010 and it was an absolute dream. We had barbecues by the road side, drank wine from mugs whilst watching the sun set, visited countless beaches and little towns and drove through beautiful countryside (and up mountains in the Pyrenees!) with Fleetwood Mac blaring out. (And of course we started every day with a bacon and egg sandwich!)
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