Brighton ~ England

I must apologize for not posting in such a long time. Time really flies when you on the go all the time.

I recently had an amazing flight to London Gatwick. I had already been twice before but I normally go shopping at Primark and have lunch at the near by mall. But this layover I was determined to do it ALL!

I chatted with the crew on the flight and I managed to rally a few of them together. One hour after checking into the hotel we all hopped on the train and started the journey to Brighton. I was very excited as I have family that used to live in Brighton,and I finally had the chance to see places like the Brighton pier in person and not just on photographs. The train ride took about an hour but it was all so worth it! When we arrived at Brighton station I realized we were extremely lucky because the weather was absolutely PERFECT! Not a breath of wind and there was not a cloud in the sky!

We stopped at the closest pub which was literally on the beach front. It was amazing sitting outside watching the waves crashing on the brown pebble beach, not a sight one gets to see every day. We then made our way towards the famous Brighton Pier. One of the girls was adamant that she wanted to go on the rides at the end of the pier so that’s what we did.

After watching the sun set we started our journey back to Crawley. By this time we were all starving so one of the crew suggested a restaurant they’d been to before. So on the walk from the hotel to the restaurant I was stunned when I looked down one of the roads and I saw a FOX creeping around! I couldn’t believe my eyes. It was a full on residential area. I don’t know what it is but all over the world I end up seeing the most astounding animals in the weirdest places.

The restaurant we ended up at was a full on Jamaican themed  place. It was amazing half price cocktails, the food was so interesting so different to the things I would usually eat and the staff were insane. While we were having our dinner the two waitors were having a full on rubber band war across the restaurant. It ended up being our entertainment!

The next morning I woke up bright and early to get as much done as possible. I set off for the mall where I had Costa coffee with breakfast and then nipped into Primark <3. After a good few hours there I then popped into Boots another favourite of mine!!  By that time I had to run back to the hotel with all my shopping so I would be in time for the wake up call. I made it with a good few minutes to spare!

Truly an amazing layover in England definitely ranked up in my top 10 layovers. 🙂

x

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Lebanese, Portuguese, South African, Serbian and Italian

 

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Brighton Pier

 

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The view walking down to the beach

 

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Brighton Pebble Beach

 

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Mauritius 

I was really lucky in the month of April as I got TWO Mauritius flights in my roster. So this post will be a combination of my two trips.

We arrived at the beautiful resort just before sun set. So as we walked through the lobby to check in we watched the sun slowly set over the lagoon and swimming pool. I was flabbergasted that it was my job to relax and enjoy an amazing resort in Mauritius for the next day and half!

While on board we all had made arrangements to meet for dinner. As we had spoken to crew who had done the flight before and most of them had only good things to say about the Buffet Dinner! And they were right!! It was amazing, they had such a large selection of food from Veal, calamari, salads, mussels and many more appetizing dishes! I think I have mastered the art of buffet eating. The trick is to have a small portion of everything then after that you can go back for seconds of the foods you enjoyed most! After dinner it was time for a well deserved rest.

The great thing about the resort is that all the water sports are included in the stay. That day I attempted watering skiing along side the boat in the lagoon. Everything was going well until we made a huge U turn and I ended up falling on my own wakes! The next activity was one of my favorites – Stand up Paddle boarding. The guy giving us all the equipment warned us that we must be careful as jelly fish had been spotted coming into the lagoon. We hopped on the boards and started paddling. I was about 200m out when I looked down and noticed that there were huge coral beds less than half a meter down. It was really crazy to see all the different colors and if I looked carefully I could see small fish darting in and around the coral. Next up was kayaking, a few of us decided to all go paddling together. After a good paddle around the lagoon and a few selfies we raced each other back to the beach.

After a very eventful morning it was then time for lunch. Lunch was divine as to be expected. I had seared tuna, salads and the most delicious desserts. It was then time to chill around the pool and catch some sun. I was really impressed with the weather as it was autumn and still really sunny. In our briefing before the trip the captain warned us to put loads of sunscreen on. Occasionally crew from other countries under estimate the strength of the sun down south. On the trip back to Dubai unfortunately there was one crew burnt so badly she looked like a cooked crayfish (lobster).

My next trip I woke up early morning to book the snorkeling with the resort! It so happens that most of the crew ended up booking the same trip. We all got kitted up with snorkels, flippers and  hopped in the water. Please take note NO WET SUIT as the water was so incredibly warm. That was a real shock for me because in Cape Town we have the freezing cold Atlantic Ocean. The most amazing thing was I didn’t have to check around every few seconds for great white sharks!! We have a few too many of them in Cape Town. I took my GoPro along and it was truly remarkable filming as there were fish everywhere! I must admit usually I’m quite scared of small fish that come up to me. But the great thing about these fish was as you swim towards them they scatter. Unless you holding a banana then they turn into little piranhas! Have a look at the photo below I was holding the banana under the water and they began to savage it. In a slight panic I threw the banana to the closet person I saw. After about 45 minutes in the water the skipper (captain) gave a call as it was time to leave. Myself and the two other crew were devastated that we had to leave. I could honestly have snorkeled for a good hour longer. Truly one of the most unforgettable experience in all of my travels. I can’t wait to go on holiday with Jeffrey and show him exactly what I was ranting and raving about.

Another activity one can do in Mauritius is book a tour to go and swim with the Dolphins. I have read up on it and you travel by boat to a bay. You then jump off the boat into open water and swim with the wild dolphins. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to arrange the tour but that just means I’m going to have to go to Mauritius again.

If you ever wondering where to go on holiday I would highly recommend Mauritius! It’s a beautiful place with so much to see and the locals are so friendly and inviting.

Stand Up Paddle Boarding

Crew Selfie

Snorkeling

SUP’ing

Feeding the fish the Banana

Snorkeling

Colombo ~ Sri Lanka

In my opinion Colombo is like one huge green house!

We arrived at the hotel and luckily there were a few other girls who had also not been to Colombo before.

On the flight we had decided to all get together and book the tour to visit the elephants. So that’s what we did! The five of us sprinted upstairs changed and came down 30 minutes later for the tour.

We jumped in the van and after a fairly lengthily drive along narrow winding roads we had a pit stop. We stopped at this little stall along the road where a young women was selling super fresh coconuts. We all got one and it was delicious! I could not believe that I paid under R3.00 for a super fresh coconut.

We set off again and about 20 minutes later we arrived at the Elephant orphanage. At the entrance we had to choose which package we wanted to go for. All of us opted for the short elephant ride and to pet the elephants in the river. It was amazing as soon as we walked through the entrance there were elephants slowly walking around the area. There were another two elephants down in the river having baths and playing in the water.

We got in line to ride the elephants and I was concerned that the elephants might be treated badly, however I was pleasantly surprised. The trainers were holding thin wooden sticks but I did not see them using them. Most of the time the trainers just shout sounds to guide the elephants. Our short ride around the garden was an amazing experience such graceful animals. My favorite encounter was when I wadded into the river while the elephant was lying on her side just cooling off. I had the pleasure of giving her a little bath. The trainer showed me how it was done. They use half a coconut shell and scoop water onto the elephants skin and give it a good scrub. It’s like a exfoliation massage at a parlour. I got the impression that the elephants love it!!!

After the elephant encounter we took a short ride to the tea factory down the road. There we were shown how they process the tea leaves and then we were lucky enough to enjoy an afternoon tasting the factory’s famous English breakfast tea.

We then made our way back to the hotel weaving through the lush forests of this enchanting city.

I am truly grateful to be able to experience these once in a life time experiences.

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The elephant and I in the river

 

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Riding the beautiful elephant

 

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The Crew

 

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Enjoying our coconuts

 

Paris – France

I never thought I would ever be traveling to PARIS! I was ecstatic when I saw CDG (Charles de Gaulle Airport) on my roster.

When we arrived at the hotel it was mid day. I knew I had to carry on with the day else I would fall asleep and not wake up till midnight. Another thing with Paris flights is that often most of the crew have already been to the city and done all the sight seeing. So luckily Yan and I, a Chinese girl decided to head out to the city as she had also never been to Paris before. Unfortunately the hotel is situated quite far from the city (ie Eiffel Tower).

Yan and I caught the shuttle to the airport and then the train all the way to the city. It was about an hour trip BUT it was so worth it! As we came out the train station we were right under the Eiffel Tower!! It was crazy both our faces lit up. And then the cameras shot out.

As we walked along the canal next to the Eiffel Tower we came to the bridge and we noticed there was quite a bit of commotion going on. Yan and I got closer to see what was going on. As we got closer I noticed that it was a game that people play to try rip off the tourists. It’s a game with three cups and they place a ball under the one and then swap the cups around. You have to keep your eye on the cup with the ball under it and then bet money on it. The lowest bid is 50 EUROS. IF you get it you double your money. We were watching and before I had said anything Yan had gone and pointed at one of the cups! They asked her to show the money and then flipped the cup over it was empty! She had lost her entire allowance for the trip. I carried on watching and then I explained the whole scam to her. There were about three people bidding each round but I noticed that all the people bidding were very tan from standing out in the sun every day. They were part of the scam. I had also seen a documentary on national geographics called Scam City. And this particular scam was one of the scams on the program.

After the drama we walked through the city, stopped off for lunch and then made our way to the Arc de Triomphe. It was quite the walk but once we got there it was insane cars zooming and hooting as they raced around the circle like it was a scene from an action movie! We then started the journey down the beautiful Champs De Élysées Avenue. It took us a good 20 minutes to walk half jog to the famous Le Grand Louvre. Unfortunately we did not go in and visit the Louvre Museum as we wanted to see as much as possible that day.

Yan and I really got a good work out doing all the sight seeing. We managed to get some great shots and a few selfies as well. We then made our way to the locket bridge the proper name is Pont Des Arts. I then bought a locket and placed it on the bridge with mine and Jeffrey’s name on it.

I found it really funny that I was in FRANCE, buying a lock made in SOUTH AFRICA and sold by a PAKISTANI.

After all the excitement for the day Yan and I decided it was time to head back to the hotel for a good rest before the flight the next morning. We found the closest metro station and hopped on the train.

I thoroughly enjoyed my stay in Paris! And I can honestly say I understand what people find so fascinating about the city. There is a vibe there that I’ve only felt in a few cities so far. It may be cliche;however, you will know what I’m talking about once you get there!

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