Sunday, January 15, 2017

Naim's experiencing Europe Tour

Date: 15th January 2017

Patience is what I needed the most for not being able to continue my train travel journey since my return from Moscow., i.e. the last Train Rides. Besides, reading according to Mason Cooley gives a person someplace to go when we have to stay where we are. By the way, Mason Cooley was an American aphorist famously known for his aphorisms. One of the other famous aphorism that he has developed was "the time I kill is killing me". He was formerly a professor emeritus of French, speech and world literature at the College of Staten Island. He died in 2002. Getting my son to check on the routes and surveying the places that hubby and I would explore during my retirement is another healing process for my travel craves. Hence, this are the story of his recent trip, fully sponsored by the parents.

At St Paul's Cathedral, London

At his favorite football team, Chelsea Stamford Bridge Stadium

I planned for Naim's trip to UK initially for vacationing with only his brother, Nazhif. Not many people knows that raising Naim to what he is now caused so much worries and headache. When he finally graduated with a mere Diploma in Public Relation I, for once was really over the moon. It doesn't matter when he reassured again and again that he has done with college life. It's a promise between us that Diploma is the basic education, one should at least has. Nevertheless, parents are responsible as an oath to raise their kids well when Allah has granted a child as a trust from Him to us. Naim is one the species that gave so much headache when he started entering the secondary school. He pick-up smoking habit right after, at the age of 13 and now on a cheaper kind of smoke, Vapes (cheaper according to him). The trip was a final gift to him in return of a promise to being a well matured grown up. He knew that he has his lifetime to pay us back. A payment is through his proven success being a credible righteous Muslim man.

At Royal Pavillion in Brighton

A meal that he cooked to save pocket money while occupying a rented house in Bath, booked through Air BNB

I might have told my sister as I couldn't remember well how Luqman, his cousin was tagging along in the vacation plan. What I remembered clearly, I was a bit reluctant when Lugman's cousin wanted to join too when my sister's did suggested to him. Being a cool and nice guy, Naim assured me that he has no issue to have another 1 more traveller accompanying him. Nazhif and I are really impressed with Naim as he is too cool with people, unlike us 2. We are a little bit impatient when dealing with people, especially with people who unable are unable to follow our pace. I would say that Naim shared a bit of hubby's character in that zone.

At Royal Crescent, Bath

At Clifton Suspension Bridge

The initial plan was to tour all Britain states, including Wales and 2 cities in Spain (Madrid and Barcelona) plus a  new year eve in Eiffel Tower, Paris. But I got really busy when it was time to book and confirmed the transportation and deciding on the accommodation. Actually, more on feeling stingy to charge those expenses into my credit card. I took Madrid out from the itinerary just because I was too lazy to think about how would he travel from Madrid to Barcelona. When Nazhif advised that flight to Barcelona is cheaper than to Madrid, I straightaway omitted Madrid from the list. They ended spent longer time in London due to that. By right, I should have let him flew to Madrid, rent a car touring Madrid and travel by road with the same rented car to Barcelona. It would not cost much after all. Sigh... well, one can't turn back the time, right!

At Clevedon's Pier where One Direction's "You & I" music video was filmed  

Few days ago when HSBC emailed Dec/January charges made mostly for Naim's hotel, Air BNB, flight, buses and or what was spent before he returned on 6th January 2017, I tidy-up the actual expenses paid for his trip. It is all confirmed that if I was not lazy he could have explore Madrid at ease. The journey by road to Barcelona would even be more wonderful. Apparently, it doesn't cost much to cover 2 cities at 1 go as living expenses is rather cheap in Spain, in comparing to UK's main cities and/or Paris. The actual pocket money (cash) for food and shoppings, the accommodation and the transportation cost only slightly above RM14 thousand (GBP2,500). Unbelievable isn't it?

At Manchester United's Stadium, clearly not a fan

Enjoying a stroll at Christmas Market at Manchester Town Hall

I'm sharing in this entry some photos he took while following all itineraries and places to visit according to my wishlist. At times, he has been forced to wake up early and explored the cities according to what his mother want. Our priorities are different. He just loves taking his daily outfit like a model pose for magazines, in other word, a person traveling in style. Being on the move for 37 days and 2 other characters that different from him was not an easy task. I realised his difficulties when he returned and shared his adventures. Whatever it was, the satisfaction and his appreciation to us, the parent is priceless. Worth all the efforts and money spent.

At Glasgow Cathedral, such a poser he is

In Aberdeen's city before heading to Invarness

I will share details itineraries and expenses at main cities that he visited should you wanted to travel on tight budget yet stylish according to a 22 year old man. Naim surprised me when answering to what is his most favorite place among all places visited, he quoted an adventure in Scotland's Highland was his best memories. Second in his list when in Barcelona as the cost of living is rather cheaper than in London or Paris. Paris was a highlight of the trip since he spent 6 days and 5 nights with his brother, who mostly look after his meal. The Paris apartment is so cosy and homely for all 5 of them to stay. They usually cooked early lunch and dinner there. While exploring the city, they merely break for light meals and/or coffee to feel warm after walking and exploring in the cold winter weather. However, Paris is rather busy with tourist at the end of the year, especially people with mutual intention that wishes to celebrate new year in the city of lights. It made all attractions packed with people who were queuing to visit. Many places I listed were not visited.

Imitating a model's pose (rather copy and paste) at Sagrada Familia, Barcelona

New H&M Trench Coat with Eiffel Tower as a background

But one thing about Naim is that he is a person who thinks that his look is more important than other things. He couldn't be bothered to visit all places that I indicated in the POI list. Most of the time I have to call and reminded for him to enter those visited place. For example, the museums, the Beatles's Story (rather Beatles museum house) which he complaints as its all required entrance fee. Paying entrance fees mean limiting his pocket money for shopping. It was so important that he dresses well for the photo, OOTD what not. He has set his mind to buy the brown trench coat in above photo right before his travel. He couldn't find sizes that suited him in Prime Mark and finally made a wassap call for permission to buy that in Paris, without any discounted price.

In overall, he's been complaining of only 2 things, that there's no boxing sales day in Barcelona and no fireworks at Eiffel Tower. Apparently, the new year firework was held at Arc De Tiomphe which theoretically can be viewed from Eiffel Tower. The weather was not good on that new year eve, forbids all beautiful fireworks from spreading into Paris night skyline. How pitiful...

To be continued if I see appropriate to do so. 

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