• Sharon Kelly

This is what happens when you don't take enough time to plan

Articles on how to write a good blog post will often talk about making your post real, connecting with your readers, making it personal... well in today's blog I will hopefully do that by owning up to a mistake.

I started off this journey saying I didn't want to plan it too much, just wanted to go with the flow, go where the mood takes me. Unfortunately it became apparent pretty quickly that this limited my choices for accomodation - at least the type of accomodation I'm looking for. I'm not really in places where I can get off the bus and a short walk brings me to a bunch of places... I've been in large cities so far so places are more spread out. So now I'm trying to plan at least 2 stops out. And since I'm averaging about 5-6 nights in each place, this means I'm planning about 2 weeks in advance. Not exactly 'go where the mood takes me' but close enough!

Now you're probably wondering where the mistake is...

In my quest to be travel more freely, I have been a bit random in picking my next stops, while still trying to move around Europe in a somewhat logical way so I minimize my travel time and cost. I am now in Krakow and in a few days I will taking an overnight bus to Riga, Latvia. This will be my first overnight bus of this trip and I'm actually looking forward to it as overnight buses or trains are almost a rite of passage for a world traveller. From Latvia it made sense to visit Russia and I found a nice Air BnB in St Petersburg. And there was the mistake... I've gotten used to moving freely throughout Europe thanks to my EU passport, that visa requirements never entered my head until yesterday and I may not get one in time. So now I find myself with a paid bus ticket up to Latvia, a country that is quite far north in Europe so travel to and from takes a while, unless you are willing to spend more money on flights, which I am not. But I have time, so after Riga I will sit on another bus, this one taking almost 24 hours, to get to my new next stop - Kiev, Ukraine. A bit more central so options after that will be better. Luckily I could cancel the Air BnB in St Petersburg and only lost the service charge (less than CAD$ 20)

Lesson learned. At least I remembered before I attempted to cross the Russian border!

This is where it helps to travel with somebody... they can back you up and hopefully he or she will catch things you miss.

p.s. for anyone not connected with me on Instagram, make sure you take a look at the New Adventures section for some pics of my journey so far. Or connect with me to see even more. (End of shameless plug for more followers 😃)

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