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2013 bucket list

Kerala, India

IT'S the start of a new year and I am looking forward to another year of traveling, discovering and fulfilling the dreams of a man overwhelmed by wanderlust. The past year, the Universe has (again) been generous and took me all around the globe to visit new spots and revisit others, near and distant, so that I may admire it from a different point of view (and I did!).

Two entries in the bucket list were ticked. I made an entry on the first week of January 2012 and found myself standing before it two weeks after — the Ifugao Rice Terraces, and got more than what I wished for when I discovered the wonders of Sagada. 

While it only took 2 weeks to tick the Ifugao Rice Terraces from the bucket list....

The other place has been on the list since college days in the 80s, about 30 years ago, when it was discussed in the History of Architecture — the Angkor Wat in Siem Reap, Cambodia. Two man-made wonders, I was in awe of its magnificence.

The Angkor Wat took 3 decades to be realized... but it happened.

What made 2012 more exciting was how my friends and other people I know were busy in seeing the world themselves. Viewing a multitude of smiling faces in travel photos posted in Facebook was inspiring.

This year, I am vocalizing my travel intentions again and sharing them with you. Who knows, I might just bump into you in one of these places.

India. To Kerala, primarily, to take up a teacher’s course in yoga and do a side trip to Agra to see the Taj Mahal, New Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore or wherever my feet and the train may take me. Maybe, this is the year for me to realize this trip and take home the teachings that I should impart to others.

Japan. I fell in love with Tokyo at first sight and vowed to return. Just like Paris, I don’t think I will never have enough of Tokyo. I am looking forward to catching the Sakura in its splendor in the whatever prefecture of Japan.

The Sakura season in Japan

The Scandinavia. A good friend, Des A., has been persistent in her invitation to visit her in Norway, and getting to “get your butt here now” phase. “It’s not only Norway you’ll see but the Denmark, Sweden, Finland, and crossover to Turkey and Greece.” I still wonder to this day why I haven’t taken her up on this offer of a lifetime. Let me picture myself traveling along this route and this will happen.

Stroll Oslo's Frogner Park

The first lady one should meet in Copenhagen

To brave a Finnish winter and experience the aurora borealis or not, that is the question. 

Shop in Istanbul's Grand Bazaar

Walk the hall of the Parthenon in Athens

On the domestic front, I still want to swim with the Butandings, a.k.a. the whale shark, wherever they are, in Oslob or Donsol. Batanes is getting more alluring by the year. Maybe I should climb Mt. Apo since it’s just at the backyard.

I will swim with you, oh gentle giant

In the meantime, I will head to one of my favorite destinations, Bangkok, and do more gastronomic tours and stay in new hotels in districts I am not too familiar with.

Why do I keep doing this? It’s an affirmation that I will be in these places. I am claiming it. May I suggest you do the same and pin it on your vision board where you see it all the time. Visualize. Own it.

So what’s on your travel list this 2013?

For more travel & lifestyle stories, visit http://jeepneyjinggoy.blogspot.com/ and http://apples-and-lemons.blogspot.com/

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on January 03, 2013.