Mini-Life Update or Useless Rambling?

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Afternoon,

I really hope no one banks on me constantly posting. I seem to be horrible with commitment and keeping this blog going. A blog post every 3-5 months seems to be my thing. Well, I guess I am at least consistent on not being consistent. A+ for effort, where is my medal? I can say that I will blog every week, but we all know that is not true. I will blog as often as I please (and when I find motivation too).

Anyways, just a mini-life update. It is finally sunny and I am sitting in my backyard on a beautiful day typing away. I (as always) am buried under work and exhausted by the end of the day. Back in February, I received a promotion. I am now a Supervisor of a team of travel product sellers.

Besides the fact of work, I recently came back from Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic and Quebec City in Canada. Summer season is upon us and my travel bug is itching. The waiting game on where and when I can/want to travel is happening. Other than work and travel, I am just doing my usual. Bopping around and socializing.  Lastly, I am most likely going to do my French Certificate and work at the same time. Not that it has any relevance to you, but it’s kind of cool.

Maybe, I will continue to blog regularly. Maybe, I will try to the best of ability to continue. Maybe you will see more posts on the travels I have covered (Thank Jebus, i have a travel journal to remember what happened). Maybe, I will win the lottery and travel the world (unlikely). Maybe, it will remain sunny for the rest of the week and we can enjoy the warm weather. Maybe. A lot of maybes in a few sentences. The one thing I know for sure is that I am going to drink this Palm Bay and put on my Summer Playlist.

 

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A little Pinot Grigio never killed no one.

All I got to say is…

Adidos Amigos,

Matt C

 

 

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Carlsberg & Christiania

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Welcome back fellow Copenhagen lovers (or soon to be)!

As Copenhagen is the expansive capital city of Denmark, there are a few attractions that are worth mentioning that I haven’t yet. Firstly, I would like to talk about the Carlsberg Brewery. For those who don’t know, Carlsberg is a pilsner and the Carlsberg group has a multitude of different brands in that they brew. These brands include Tuborg (a personal favourite), Somersby ciders and Kronenbourg (my go-to beer). I find that they brew some pretty fantastic beers and I would definitely recommend them to others.

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A nice, cold glass of Carlsberg on a summer day!

 

From Central Square, this is about a 40 minute walk. The brewery is not too large, but it is definitely something to see! As most breweries do, they have a walk through museum of the history the beer and different brands. What I found particularly interesting was there was a room that was dedicated to each beer they have made and the different bottles used. While walking through, you get two beers and there is a food place at the end of the museum to drink more. Overall, 7.8 out of 10 for the brewery!

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Beer, beer, beer!

Last but not least, there is the Freetown Christania. The internet describes it as a self-proclaimed autonomous neighbourhood. I describe it as a country-like neighbourhood that is in a capital city and very liberal when it comes to marijuana. Christania is lined up and down the area with shacks and rustic homes/stores. It is within Copenhagen that is segregated and the residents are extremely artistic/expressive. It is somewhere that is great for relaxing and  is a complete different atmosphere from places I have been too before. It kind of feels like Amsterdam minus the erotica.

Unfortunately in Christania, there are no camera or photos allowed. This is to maintain the privacy of the residents and the area. As I do not have any photos, this is definitely something you will have to see on your own! The residents are very welcoming and nice. My suggestion while there is to try the fruit juices. There is a place with organic fruits and it tastes delicious. It is worth your money to try and you know it is not going to a big corporation which is always a bonus!

Anyways, thanks for reading! Don’t forget to catch up my last post of Crazy for Copenhagen and my upcoming posts on Iceland!

Until Next Time,

Matt C

 

Crazy for Copenhagen!

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Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Copenhagen. I am just crazy for Denmark! It is one of my favourite countries in the world and I got to stay in one of the best cities! I would love to go back and cannot wait for next time I visit! Hopefully that will be very soon!

First off, the hostel I stayed at was amazing. It was called the Generator Hostel Copenhagen.For the first time on that backpacking trip, I got a private room and it felt amazing to be alone for a while. The common area had a bunch of couches in the sitting arrangement and a multitudes of televisions you can watch. It had a bar, pool table, and a restaurant in the hostel! I met a lot of other travelers and it was great for socializing!

One of the first things I saw while there was Kogens Have (The King’s Garden) and the Rosenberg Castle. This is a renaissance styled castle that was used as a summerhouse for Christian VI. It is much different than other castles I have seen. It was not overly glamorous and it was very simplistic. It was nice to see a castle different from the stereotypical renaissance glitz.

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Rosenberg’s Castle – I try to pretend that I am a good photographer. Clearly not the best.

 

Something different I tried, for the first time, was going to an escape room. I met a girl from San Diego, California and we decided to give it a go. The place was called Timequest and was very entertaining! We did the 2 persons escape room where we were locked in a jail cell and had to get out within the 60 minutes. Needless to say, we did not succeed. Although we lost, it was a lot of fun. I won’t get into details though because I wouldn’t want to spoil it for you just in case you wanted to try! If you do want to try, make sure you book the escape room in advance!

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The fellow traveller from San Diego!

Another area I suggest everyone to see is Nyhavn. It is a 17th century waterfront, canal and entertainment district. It is one of the most picturesque part of the city and probably one of the most spectacular things I have ever seen! When you walk up and down the harbourfront, all you can see are these houses  in multiple colours. Red, blue, green, look below for a stunning picture! It is the common, colourful Northern European architecture! A great thing about Nyhavn is that there are restaurants along the strip, but they are more than regular restaurants. Cause, y’know, tourists love it there. Hint, hint, nudge, nudge, tourist trap.

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The beautiful Nyhavn!

Unfortunately, this time I did not get to see Tivoli Gardens. It is an amusement park in the heart of Copenhagen. It is on my bucketlist for the next time I go to Copenhagen! Something that may be on your bucket list is the Copenhagen Airport. As strange as that sounds, it is one of the best airports I have flown from! It is beautiful, a lot of shops and places to eat! It is very expansive, definitely feels like an attraction itself!

One thing I did, that I always suggest for backpackers, is the free walking tour! It started at the city’s central square and stopped at various locations of the downtown core of the Copenhagen. The tour ended at the base of Freetown Christiania, which will be the blog for next week. Stayed tuned for the city within Copenhagen and the relaxing life in Christiania!

Until Next Time,

Matt C

Historcial Hamburg

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Let’s take a journey back to July 2015 when I was in Hamburg and on my second backpacking trip. This was the first destination that I ever went to by myself (refer to Tough Travelling: Going Solo). This will give you insight on how I felt and my experiences while travelling alone. Now, onto the actual destination itself and my experience while in Hamburg, Germany!

Hamburg was quite the experience. Not only because I was travelling alone for the first time, but the people of Hamburg and the city itself. There were fireworks going on throughout the city the first night I was there. It was cool to see especially since I did not have to leave my hostel room! Another interesting thing was that everyone was dressed in 70s get-up. Apparently there is a music festival that happens every July held in the St Pauli district of Hamburg called Schlagermove. It is the festival of love and everyone comes in their psychedelic wear to celebrate. It was very interesting and needless to say, there was a lot of drunk people. I didn’t know it at the time about the festival but they seemed to have a good time and would have been awesome if I joined!

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Aerial view of Hamburg from St. Michael’s Church

I went on a free walking tour the first day by New Europe. It was a great way to combat my loneliness (at least that what my travel journal says). It started outside of Hamburg Rathaus which is the beautiful renaissance City Hall that is the port. Near in front of it is there is a market where you can get delicious food and drinks!  One of the stops on the tour was St Michael’s Church. You can go up to the top of the church and get a panorama view of the Hamburg. It was so windy, but it was probably one of the best views that I have ever seen!

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Hamburg Rathaus – clearly, I am not the best at taking pictures.

Another sight that I saw was Miniatur Wunderland. This is a railway attraction that has multiple figurines cities and landscapes. The cities include Hamburg, the Alps in Austria, Switzerland, and 6 other sections. They were pretty cool to see. Mind you, there were lot of children and I almost tripped over 3 dozens of them. Regardless, it was impressive to see that they built all these expansive exhibits in small rooms. One of the other things that I enjoyed doing was doing shopping in the downtown district. The shopping was behind Hamburg Rathaus and had a few major stores for those who need retail therapy. Sometimes it helps to get your mind off of travelling solo.

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Switzerland at Miniatur Wunderland

Next up is: Copenhagen, Denmark! The city of my dreams! Keep yourself posted!

Until Next Time,

Matt C

 

Winsdor: Hotel Mishap

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I am currently writing to you from a hotel lobby in Ottawa. Everyone in my room is sleeping and I decided not to keep them up with the screen of my laptop. All around me in the lobby are hockey parents – oh joy. I am watching the movie on Netflix called ‘Circle’. It is a psychological thriller where 50 people are in two circles that have a death laser in the middle. They have to figure out who gets to survive and who dies. Highly recommend watching it! Anyways, I’m getting off topic, onto the hotel mishap in Winsdor!

The first day in Winsdor felt extremely long. We drove from London, Ontario and it took about 2.5 hours to get to Winsdor. After that, we arrived late to the hotel and the whole Jessii Vee crew had to do the site inspection of the hall. That took another 2 hours to do (we sat in the van and drank wine) and the day turned into a longer day than necessary. Finally around 17:00, we got to the hotel. The online reviews for the hotel said that it was a 4 star, but this was definitely a 2 star. Note to future self: don’t believe everything you read online.

We got to the hotel lobby, and it is already kind of dingy. It did not look the cleanest, but it is livable. I have stayed in some pretty bad hostels so I am no stranger to dingy conditions. We got in the hotel room and we automatically notice the smell. It is definitely a smoking room; it is very extremely musky. After a while, I was like “whatever, it is just a smell”. I went to the washroom and quite a bit of the floor/areas around the counter was cracked or broken. The facilities still worked so i guess that was a bonus.

After I came out of the washroom, I realized that everyone was packing. They decided that we couldn’t stay there. The room for the girls was covered in someone’s hair. There were blood stains on the mattress and some on the sheets. It was disgusting. A lot of their electrical plugs did not have safety covers on them. Also, this problem wasn’t as big, but we were not even on the same floor. They were on a lower floor and there was a bunch of people partying with loud music all up and down the halls.

The weirdest part of it was that the front desk guy called to their room and asked how their room was. Why would you call someone’s room to ask how it is? That has never happened to a hotel i have been at, it is completely strange.  It is just logical that if something is wrong, you wait for the problem to come to you. It is like they knew something was wrong with the rooms. When they demanded that they switch our hotel or get a refund back, the front desk guy did not object. He took 5 minutes to relocate us to a new property. Once we got settled in the new hotel, it was 20:00. It was a long day of realistically doing nothing.

Anyways, the tour is going well and we just finished our time in Montreal. That was fantastic and I love the time there. I will definitely be back and cannot wait for to go back. That’s it for this week’s blog! Keep posted for next weeks!

Until Next Time,

Matt C

Travel Update: 2016-11-05

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My oh my, the last couple weeks have been hectic from my travel adventures. For my 22nd birthday, I decided to go to Cuba with one of my best friends and now I am on the Jessii Vee “Embrace Your Weird Side” Tour. She is a youtuber with over 650,000 subscribers and is one of my great friends. Let me give you an update on these two exciting, ongoing adventures!

So in mid-October, I went to Varadero, Cuba and stayed at the Grand Memories Varadero Resort. We were there for 4 days and to say the least: we drank. As you guys know from the previous blog posts, I like to have a drink in every country I go to. It is kind of like a souvenir. The drinks were strong and pina coladas soon quickly became more present in my bloodstream than blood.

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Yes, I like Pina Coladas, and getting caught in the rain. I’m not much into health food, I am into champagne.

The resort was beautiful! We were upgraded from a Hotel Room to a Superior Room. The rooms were always clean and the staff was super friendly. The beach was probably my favourite part. The sand was a golden brown and the ocean was a bright blue. Ah, it was so beautiful! As for the entertainment, it was pretty fun to watch and participate in! On the Monday, they had a foam party, while the other days they had couples activities. We didn’t see any night events because we usually napped after sitting in the sun all day.

**NOTE TO SELF: Wear sunscreen stronger than SPF 15. You have now been peeling for two weeks.**

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Hot dogs or legs? We will never know.

As for Cuban food, there is not much to say about it. It is Cuban food if you catch my drift. It is not terrible, but it is not great. We are still alive and when you drink enough, you cannot taste it. All that was wrong with it is that it is bland; flavourless. They don’t use any spice on their food.

Now finally, the Jessii Vee tour update! If you don’t know who she is, click here to watch! We have 6 cities in 15 days. She has her regular segments posted on there and she will be posting vlogs throughout about our time on the tour! The itinerary is:

  • London, Ontario
  • Winsdor, Ontario
  • Niagara Falls, Ontario
  • Toronto, Ontario
  • Montreal, Quebec
  • Ottawa, Ontario

We have been to London and Winsdor now. We are currently in Niagara with her next show soon! It is incredible to do her show and meet all her fans! It is a lot of work; emotionally and physically exhausting. The turnouts for her shows have been great and the support of her fans is fantastic!

London and Winsdor are both smaller towns. To be honest, there is not much to do other than shop. That’s alright though, I am just really grateful to be included on her tour. It will be really nice when we get to Toronto and I can sleep in my own bed. I will make myself into a blanket burrito and not talk to anyone until I have too!

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My life in a nutshell.

Alright, well I will do an overview of the hotel disaster in Winsdor in the next blog. Keep your eyes open and happy travels!

Until Next Time,

Matt C

Solo Travelling: Fighting the Doubt

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Hello fellow travellers! Salut! Bonjour! Ciao! Howdy! I can’t think of any other languages to say hello. Last week I posted a blog on travelling alone. Now as promised, I will give some tips that I found on my journey helped. Let’s dive right into this and get this show on a roll.

  1. I don’t believe this is the most important tip, but it is definitely a valuable one. Go to your support system. Whether it be friends, family, or even co-workers. Talk to them, communicate with them. They will help change your mind. My parental units are my support. The first time I travelled alone, my mom “talked me off the cliff” (her saying, not mine). Got me to change my mind and ended up continuing the rest of my travels.
  2. Remember that it is just a hard moment. This is not going to be your entire life. Well unless, you would like and decide to make be. The moments of anxiety, fear and self-doubt will pass. Keep calm, continue on, and keep travelling!
  3. Do something that relaxes you. At night, I noticed I would get a bit lonely. When you get that way, find a distraction. Mine happens to be watching copious amounts of Buzzfeed videos. I have no idea why (they are like crack, very addicting).The other thing I watch is Iliza Shlesinger comedy specials on repeat. She is hilarious and her vulgar humour is right down my alley. Find yours and it should get your mind off the anxiety.
  4. Socialize, Socialize, Socialize. This is a key thing to do. If you don’t, you get stuck in your head. It’s a key thing, but on of the hardest. For introverts and ambiverts, it is the toughest. Start with simple things like if asking if you can sit at a table in a hostel or inquiring about what someone is reading. Once you have the ball rolling, don’t stop your momentum.
  5. Choose accommodations with meeting areas. Hostels are the perfect accommodations for situations like this. A lot of them have common areas, bar, kitchens; places you can strike up a conversation. It gives you the incentive of not being trapped in your room and communicating with other people that have similar needs. Whether it be a conversation in a kitchen about food or a bar about bar, there is always someone down there wanting to talk to others. It is a win-win situation.

Hopefully, you try some of these tips if you are travelling alone. It’s the simple things that will keep you going. Make sure to keep finding the beauty in your travelling and don’t let anything get in your way. On that note, safe travels ladies and gents. More posts will follow for travel topics that you find interesting. Well I am hoping you do because i sure do.

Until Next Time,

Matt C