I always dreamed that I would up and leave my small town life in favor of the big cities. Places like Seattle and San Francisco called my name while Scotland and Morocco begged me to visit. And, for a while, I got to leave my small town. I moved to Monterey, California for a year (and I miss it sometimes). I drove across the country twice and lived in Maryland for another year (not something I would recommend).
All the while, home called back to me. I missed the blue, blue river with it’s thousand islands (yeah, the dressing was invented here). I missed our regal castles and lush, country settings. Home was where the heart was and it took me a few years to figure that out. So, when the hubs out-processed we booked it back.
It’s great being back, I wont lie. The itch is still there though, the itch to travel. I saw a bit of America, but nothing too fun. There are so many more states, more countries to explore and I have so much more time ahead of me still. This time around, I know where home base is.
I took a night and compiled all of the geeky places that I want to see. All of these are going on a bucket list and I’ll let you know when I check them off.
- Inverness, Scotland: I want to see all of the United Kingdom and Ireland, but Inverness is essential. It is the place where Claire Randall fell through time and into sexy scot, Jaime Frasier’s lap. I don’t expect to find myself a highlander, but it would be an experience to walk through the standing stones
- Diagon Alley, Universal Studios Orlando: I’m not a Potterhead, but like I said, I adore Rowling’s imaginary world. Universal Studios brought a small piece of it to life for us muggles. We can find our wand, have a butterbeer, and buy a magical pet while we forget that reality is a cold, hard bitch that declared us muggles.
Prague, Czech Republic: In this beautiful city the story of Daughter of Smoke and Bone begins. Laini Taylor builds such a beautiful image of the city through Karou’s eyes that I fell in love. I want to find the little dive bar that Karou and Zuzanna frequent and sit next to the gas mask wearing bust. The architecture and history are so rich compared to an American city, so beautiful.
- Hobbiton, New Zealand: The Hobbit was one of my very first fantasy books. I found it by chance, not really knowing who I was reading at the time. In New Zealand there is a bar and shop that you can visit. You can stay at a farm nearby, the site doesn’t tell me if it’s a hobbit hole or not, and take a tour of the actual set itself. For traditional hobbit cuisine you can visit the Green Dragon Inn, featured in both film franchises. I don’t know about you, but I’d give up and arm and a leg for a chance like that.
- San Diego Comic-Con: We all know where this is. We all know what this is. We all dream of going there. It has to be the largest Comic Convention every year, often the place where the latest and greatest are announced. In the year I spent in California, it crossed my mind that we missed out on an opportunity.