Chasing Summer: Part 3

This is the end of my summer holiday recap. Other than the luggage drama (documented in full detail in my previous post) Paris was an absolute dream as always. Correction this time was better because this was my first summer in Paris and listen this city in summer *chef’s kiss*.

Honestly there’s not much for me to say that I haven’t already said in my other Paris posts so I’m going to share a whole lot of pictures.

Galeries Lafayette views

The view of the city from the terrace at the Galeries Lafayette is quite a site to behold.

Places we ate

Touristy Shots

Sacré-Cœur

Cheesy Shots

Yes I do have a bit of an obsession with the Eiffel Tour

Chasing Summer: Storytime

We had a great time in Barcelona up until we got to the airport, can you say DRAMA. We got to the airport in Barcelona super excited about the second leg of trip, we were headed to Paris. Come check-in time we were informed that our flight was overbooked *cue dramatic music*

I also want to state for the record we arrived at the airport on time, overbooking happens according to the lady at the check-in desk as she checked our luggage in and handing us boarding passes with no gate number. Also may I just say the people who work at the Barcelona are very dismissive.

Anyway back to the our story, we were booked on an 11h30 flight so we could have a full-ish day in Paris. We finally make it to the correct boarding gate and the attendant there tries to shoo us away in spanish, at this point we’ve had it and our inner Karens come out so we start yelling. This prompts the attendant to find her English switch; she then informs us again that our flight is over booked and that we’ll be put on the next available flight. She asks us to take a seat next to 2 other passengers( a mother and daughter) who were also supposed to be on our flight. The attendant comes back with more info, new boarding passes and meal and snack vouchers as the flight we’ve been moved to is at 19h30. Please note the time when all this is happening is 11h00 ELEVEN O’ FRIGGIN CLOCK!!!!! We cannot leave the airport, we’re stuck there for 8hours that’s a full work day, at this point I’ve stopped listening.

The attendant switches between English & Spanish while talking to us, so thank goodness Maria the other passenger in the trenches with us speaks Spanish so she translates for us and her mother where needed. Sidenote Maria was the MVP during this ordeal. We are also told we’ll be landing at Orly airport so we’re like “our initial flight was to land at Charles De Gaulle” and that was the sticker placed on our luggage when we checked in *cue more dramatic music*. The attendant is like no problem there will be a taxi to take you to CDG to go collect your luggage just go to the Iberia counter someone will be there to help you.

So fast forward to us landing in Paris and wishful thinking has me heading to the luggage carousel hoping to find my suitcase and I guess Maria and her mom hoped the same cause that’s where we reunited. Nomsa on the other hand went to search for the Iberia counter. We join her after we’ve seen all luggage come out and ours isn’t there. There’s a queue and when we get to the front we have to fill in forms and the lady at the counter is like “Ok go to your hotel and your luggage will be delivered tonight or tomorrow morning” the time now is 22h15. This is where we all chime in “No you guys are supposed to get us a taxi that will take us to CDG and we can get our luggage ourselves tonight”. She says “Nope”. At this point I’m cursing the attendant in Barcelona again.

We decide to take an uber to CDG to go find our luggage. Yoooooo when I tell you the baggage terminal was a ghost town at that hour, we kept knocking at any door where we saw people. I kid you not at one point we were giving a cleaning lady our phone numbers and showing pictures of our luggage (once again Maria translated as she also spoke french). Desperate times guys.

Anyway our efforts were fruitless so we went to our hotel luggage-less. We checked into our hotel at 00h30. I woke up the next morning hella optimistic because hey I woke up in Paris it doesn’t get better than that.

We decide to go get supplies while we wait for luggage to arrive alas most places are closed because its Sunday and the french don’t eff around when it comes to rest days. Anyway the local supermarche’ and H&M saved the day because they made it possible for us to continue holiday-ing without our stuff. Don’t get it twisted we were still tracking the luggage progress or lack thereof on the Vueling Airlines site. Sunday came and went and still nothing.

Monday morning even our concierge was on the case, we were recruiting people at this point and checking in with Maria as well. By midday we were losing hope and Maria had already received a call from the airline and we had nothing 😦

We went back to the hotel a bit defeated but then we were told the airline called while we were out and our luggage would arrive between 15h00-18h00. I went to go take a nap and Nomsa went shopping just in case . After my nap I also went shopping cause nothing had arrived and when we got back to the hotel the concierge had the biggest grin on his face because our luggage finally arrived. When I tell you I damn near hugged this man (I’m not a hugger).

Like shuuu hey, it took nearly two days but our Paris holiday could finally begin.

Real-life drama I tell you.

Chasing Summer : Part 2

We only had a few days in Barcelona and no real plan. The only things on my Barcelona to-do list were Moco Museum and riding the cable cars to get a view of the city. The rest of the time could be spent at the beach and would have been if it wasn’t for the rain. Which got us exploring the city more. Yeah I’m one of those “go with flow, anywhere the wind blows” type of traveler.

DAY 2:

We took a walk around the port on a cloudy day and we saw some really cool boats and enjoyed the city views. The good news is the sun came out to play half way through our exploration walk.

DAY 3

We took the scenic route to the cable cars. Our search included an uphill walk, some stairs and we braved a little drizzle but it was worth it for the views, all this is before we actually got on the cable car. Quick sidenote when we reached our destination we figured out what the guy at our hotel reception was trying to tell us : there was literally a train from the metro station right outside our hotel directly to the cable cars *insert eyeroll here*. But if we had taken that option we would have missed a bunch of photo ops and what I’m counting as exercise.

That evening we went for supper at Cremat Lounge where the staff was super friendly and the gave a list of parties to check at the gothic quarter. We ended up at a place called Jamboree where they had a hip hop open mic session downstairs and a dj whose playlist was on shuffle upstairs. Yep we danced to Ace of base and Beyonce in one night. Fun was had.

DAY 4

We finally made it to the beach on our last full day in Barcelona and boy did I soak up the sun. A lot of interesting things to be seen at Barceloneta beach:

  • A lot of vendors: Mojito & beer salesmen, masseuses, ladies who braid hair and guys renting out umbrellas.
  • A lot of topless tanning
  • The beach blanket vendors bury the inventory in the sand *true story bro*

The day ended with another touristy activity, we went to go check out the Sagrada Familia. Because we got there so late (21h00), we didn’t get to go inside but the outside is so beautiful.

Also can we take a moment to appreciate the late European sunsets in the summer, love love love them.

Chasing Summer: Part 1

After a three year hiatus my passport finally left its corner of the drawer to get some sun and fresh air and I tagged along. All roads lead my passport, my friend Nomsa and me to Barcelona and Paris. We luckily escaped the cold front that hit SA and enjoyed a European summer for a little bit.

Travel has gone back to normal covid regulations-wise, just as long as you have your vaccination certificate and in Spain’s case you have to fill in a DCC form if your vaccination was done outside of Europe.

Anyway, the first leg of our trip was Barcelona, I had no real expectations of the place I just selected it because it gave me a beach and city holiday in one. Turns out I really like the place. Day one we took a walk around the neighbourhood where we were staying to get the lay of the land, then we took the bus to Barceloneta beach.

We had tickets booked to an art exhibition at Moco Museum which featured a few of my favourite artists. After the exhibit we went to dinner at a restaurant called Morelia where we scored a free dessert thanks to the friendly owner 🙂

We had so much fun here, day one definitely set the tone for the stay in Barcelona, 10/10 I highly recommend.

Where I’ve Been

I know I have not been the most consistent when it comes to posting over here but this time around I have an actual reason. Its ironic that the name of this blog is Lost in the world because for the past 10 months that’s exactly what I’ve been. And there’s no amazing grace over here as I am still not found.

My mom passed away in June last year and to say my whole world shattered is the understatement of the century. I’m still trying to figure out who I am without her, I think I spent the majority of my life just being her daughter I’m not sure who I am without her. I am lost!

I woke up missing her like crazy this morning and instead of the usual staring at pictures of her and listening to her voice notes I decided to write this post. I’ll most likely still do those things after posting this though.

My mother was my everything and probably the best person I will ever meet. She literally lit up every room she walked into, the darkness I’ve been in is unimaginable. I’m basically taking it one day at a time but I’m missing a huge chunk of my heart so even that one day at a time is hard to do. April is my mother’s birth month, so I find myself thinking of her even more.

This is proof of life post really to say I am still around I’m grieving my mother.

I’m writing this post to express my feelings I suppose. I’m in therapy now can you tell?

Go West, for a quick shotleft

One thing that the lockdown travel restrictions brought about by Covid19 is we have been given the opportunity to explore our country and find some gems. We found one such gem in the Western Cape in the form of a fishing town called Paternoster 2 hours outside of Cape Town. A town made up of gorgeous beaches and white houses.

We stayed at Gonana Guest House in a sea facing room where we could walk from our bed right onto the beach. They serve breakfast and have the friendliest most helpful staff, big shoutout to Sis Thandi for taking such great care of us and all your recommendations.

Quick room tour

For 2 overworked girls from the city this beach holiday was just what the doctor order 🙂 . There are quite a few activities offered at Paternoster but to be honest with you the beach was the only thing on our itinerary. The water is cold but you can go in, here’s a quick tip if you prefer a private beach vibe visit Paternoster during the week because we had the beach to ourselves. When the weekend comes the whole town hits the beach, which makes sense because the weather called for it, it was nice and hot.

Obligatory arrival shot

Our guesthouse house had the best view of the sunset and on a good day you can see dolphins in the water, I caught a sneak peek of the dolphins when we checked in and on our beach buggy tour, but nothing caught on camera.

View of the sunset

We took a beach buggy tour on Saturday morning with Deon a longtime resident of Paternoster who legit knows everyone in town.

POV from the beach buggy

Here is a shot of me staking out the dolphins after breakfast and a few balcony shots.

Show yourselves dolphins

A Little R & R

We have finally made it to the end of 2020 and so I rewarded myself with a little getaway but not too far from home I’m still quite cautious about Covid 19 and all. So I checked in to the the Cradle Boutique hotel which is about 40 minutes from Sandton. I enjoyed the fresh air, the animals (excluding the monkeys and baboons that pop up anywhere) and feeling like I was far away from home.

We went on safari in the morning, we didn’t see any predators but we saw a bunch of other animals and birds, sidenote I didn’t photograph the monkeys and baboons because those things freak me out so I just sat still and waited for the vehicle to keep moving.

I enjoyed the peace and quiet I would highly recommend the Cradle Boutique for a quick weekend away. A quick tip though the deck/balcony is the best place to chill the pool area is legit directly under the sun your feet will burn taking a few steps to get into the pool. Our balcony was my favourite place to just chill, if for nothing else but the view (we saw Zebras from our deck when we arrived). Bring a book and plenty of snacks and take it all all in.

The view from our deck

Stepping Out

2020 what a year right? This pandemic has literally pressed a pause button on the world, travel plans included 😦 . This lockdown has given us all cabin fever, so when SA’s lockdown status was dropped down to level 1 we were all so happy to finally go outside again. Those who know me even a little bit know that I am not a fan of physical activity but when my sister suggested we go hiking I said “Yes” me a whole me, I agreed to take part in strenuous activity. I’m actually so glad I did because WOW, I kind of forgot how beautiful our own backyard actually is.

So far we’ve done the 10km hike at the Cradle Moon hiking trails and the waaaaaay more than 10km (My step counter said 17km #justsaying) Hennops hiking trail and all I can say is South Africa is beautiful. I tried to capture it and I hope these images do it some justice.

Cradle Moon Hiking trail

Views from Hennops Hiking trail

These places are not more than an hour outside JHB , this lockdown has actually given us an opportunity to explore our beautiful country and what a beauty she is.

Africa my motherland

Land of milk and honey

Land of natural beauty

Africa land where I live

Abisoye Sejoro

Travel Spotlight: Nyaki Tshabangu

I love social media because you come across really cool people, case in point the person featured in this edition of Travel spotlight Nyaki Tshabangu who appeared on my instagram explore page. I’m a natural hair enthusiast and she’s in the natural hair business. I’ll let her speak for herself .

Tell us who you are and what you do?

I am a founder at Natural Hair Co. A business in the business of making Natural hair Normal by creating spaces for entrepreneurs in the hair space the opportunity to market and retail their brands.

We love your travel content, tell us the places you’ve been around the world

I’ve been all over, I recently completed a trip that meant I’d been to all the continents (except Antarctica) .

What was your favourite destination?

I don’t really have a favorite destination, each destination holds a really special place in my heart because of who I went with, or the occasion of my travel.

Do you use travel agents or are you a DIY traveller using apps?

I’m a diY through and through. I use momondo to book flights, and depending on what apps they use in the country for commuting. I use Pinterest to find as much information as a i can before booking.

When did the travel bug bite?

When I spent 3 weeks in Brazil over Christmas and nye with friends.

Do you have any hints and tips for solo travellers or first time travellers?

Do as much research as you can, and that safety is only a concern in South Africa. If you can survive being alone here, the rest of the world is easy to navigate.

What do you never travel without?

I want to say my husband, but it’s my phone.

Money is no object, where in the world would you go?

Oh wow. I’d go to Ethiopia 🇪🇹

Where can people find you on social media?

Nyakinaturally on Instagram