How do you measure, measure a year? 2017 was the year I spent time in 13 different countries and 11 different states. I traveled to Europe three times. I set foot on my fifth continent. I revisited London, Indianapolis, Ireland, and Portugal. I reunited with friends from college in Prague and Dublin and old coworkers in London, Chicago, and Dubrovnik. I traveled for 10 days in Cape Town with someone I met in Mandalay and for 12 days in Croatia with someone I met in Dublin. A twelfth of my year was spent dog-sitting, both in Chicago and Jersey City. I added Shenandoah National Park to my list of U.S. National Parks.
You all knew I was going to make this pun at some point – a tiger doesn’t change her stripes. Maybe I even had it in my plans before I went to Hungary, because it’s too obvious to not take advantage of. But I had NO IDEA that Budapest was going to be the source of some of the best food I’ve ever had in my life. Seriously.
By the time I arrived in Budapest, I was about a third of the way through my trip. In a little over two weeks, I’d stayed in three Airbnbs in South Africa, and two Airbnbs and one hotel in England. I’d only had my own place for two of those nights. I had a blast with my friends, but I was also looking forward to being by myself. While in Budapest, I stayed at St. George Residence All Suite Hotel Deluxe, a luxury hotel on the Buda side of the Danube River.
As I wrote in my January recap, I waited a while for my 2017 to begin. After returning from India right before Thanksgiving and spending all of December and January either in New Jersey or New York, I was ready to take off – and take off I did. In February, I landed on a new (to me) continent, added five more countries to my list, and, for the first time, visited a European city and country I’d been before.