Sunday, April 17, 2016

The (Travel) Force Is Strong With This One

Poking around my blog, you might guess that my love of travel is genetic and that I come from a long line of explorers. Well, that's really not the case. Actually, many in my family just don't get why I like wandering all over the world. There are a couple of exceptions though, like my aunt and uncle and, now, my niece.

Back in 2010, I was in Philadelphia for Thanksgiving when my cousin's daughter, who was in high school at the time, showed some interest in my travels. She asked me where I had been, what I liked, and some ideas of places she might visit one day. Even though she had yet to enter university, she was already thinking about where she'd could do an exchange semester overseas. As I had just come to Philadelphia directly from China, I think I said how impressed I was and that she might consider going there. I probably gave her some other ideas but I don't remember now.

Like all smart people, she's completely ignored my advice and is currently doing an exchange semester in London! By the way, it seems like that conversation was yesterday! I'm old!

When I found out she'd be in England, Diana and I told her she needed to visit during a break. It was an even bigger surprise when my cousin decided to visit her and that they'd do a quick Barcelona trip!

Even though it was for only a couple of days, we squeezed in all the best of Barcelona. The Magic Fountain above and the full Sagrada Familia tour. This was just a couple of days after we went for our private tour with Victor Ochen.

By the way, I was recently corrected that I'm wrong to call my cousin's daughter my niece but saying "my first cousin once removed" is just way too complicated, so you'll have to forgive me as I'll just continue saying niece.

I mentioned above about how my niece is a bit of a travel fan. She did a project in Belgium last year and has been bouncing around Europe for the last couple of months. I was jealous when I recently saw her posts from Croatia! It's good that the force is strong with (someone in) my family (finally)!

Taking in the view from Park Guell:

Between the wedding and several random visits like this one, maybe a third of my family's been, which isn't too bad when you consider it's like a ten-hour flight away. Now, about the rest of them...

At Casa Batllo:

It was a treat to have these guys stay with us. I can't wait to visit my niece when she's living somewhere in a land far, far away (hint, hint). Based on what I've seen, it won't be a long, long time...

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