August 2017 Recap | Portugal, Ireland, Finger Lakes, New Jersey

The summer always flew by when I was working full-time because I never got as much sun as I needed while stewing working away in my cubicle. I didn’t think the summer would pass so quickly when I was just working part-time, but, man. I mean, I’ve done a lot this summer, that’s for sure, but I initially expected to be back in the city by the fall and, well, it’s basically here.

Posts on 10 Miles Behind Me in August:

Plus catch this contribution on Travel Through Life where I wrote about one of my favorite places in the world as a U.S. destination to visit this fall.

Lagos, Portugal

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After a fantastic time with my family in Ireland, I knew I’d want some alone time to wind down, especially knowing that this was likely my last international adventure in a while. I decided last minute to travel to Lagos, Portugal. I’d loved Portugal so much when I was in Lisbon and Porto. Being on the beach sounded like a good idea after being bundled up in Irish wool for a week and a half. Lagos brought me some late nights, as if I were 21 again, but also brought me plenty of time for reflection.

I kept thinking about how this last trip brought everything full circle. I started out in St. Louis, where I met up with friends I made in Myanmar, my first adventure after quitting my job to travel. I was then in Ireland with my family recreating a trip we’d taken 19 summers earlier, then on my first time ever out of the USA. I especially reflected a lot at the end of an intense hike of the western coast of Portugal, one of my favorite countries. It was here, sitting at “the End of the World”, where Europeans used to think the world ended, before they figured out the earth was round and that there was plenty more out there. It took some time to convince myself that just because my year (and then some) of travel is coming to an end, it doesn’t mean that it’s the end of *my* world and that there’s plenty more out there for me, too. Right?

Dublin, Ireland

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After Lagos, I went to Dublin to relax a little bit, having given myself a few days there before my flight back out to NYC. I didn’t know for sure if I’d have enough to do in Lagos since I hadn’t done any research, but knew I’d enjoy being in Dublin. Though I started out at a pub quietly mulling over James Joyce’s Dubliners, I quickly met up with an old college drinking buddy and his friends and my plans changed. I stayed up way too late each night, in countless pubs and clubs, and drinking countless glasses of Guinness. In both Lagos and Dublin, I met some really awesome people who made me wonder if I’m finished with this year (and then some) of travel after all.

Finger Lakes, New York

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If you follow me on other outlets (Facebook and Instagram especially), you’ve seen a lot from my trip to the Finger Lakes with my fellow bloggers and good friends One Carry-On and Stories My Suitcase Could Tell. We had such a wonderful time exploring the areas of Corning, Elmira, and Watkins Glen – kayaking, paddle-boarding, hiking, getting pampered, and tasting wine, spirits, and chocolate. I was surprised by how much fun the Corning Museum of Glass was, and there’s plenty more to come on this site about our time spent there.

New Jersey

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As much as I like being away, the Jersey Shore in August is hard to beat. The ocean’s finally warm enough to stay in there for more than a few minutes, the tourists are learning better beach etiquette, and the college kids are back at school. Earlier this month, my cousin and her family came to visit and I had a blast working on my Connect Four and sandcastle-making skills. I spent many days in my neighbors’ pool, even some days when they were home. I had breakfast with a friend from college and her family the other morning. It was great to catch up and holy cow, the peanut-butter chocolate pancakes at Airport Diner in Ocean City are incredible.

Right before I went up to the Finger Lakes, I got to spend a night in Jersey City with friends and their pupster and enjoyed some peanut-butter chocolate ice cream. And on the final night of August, my parents and I went over to Stone Harbor’s Taco Shop for our newly initiated “Taco Thursdays” (because Taco Tuesdays are too crowded) for mahi-mahi and pork shoulder tacos. They were delish. We also treated ourselves to –  you guessed it – peanut-butter chocolate custard at Kohrs Bros.

What’s Next?

I know for sure that September will involve more peanut-butter chocolate combinations, but beyond that, I’m not jinxing myself. Stay tuned.

xx

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