Twelve days (!)

Well, well, well. Here I am, only 12 days from departure. It’s difficult to describe the emotions I am experiencing in the weeks leading up to my adventure. I mostly feel anxiety and stress, as I have yet to start packing or physically preparing for the journey. Simple tasks, such as purchasing a suitcase and packing my clothing, have loomed large on my mind. Once I commit to doing them, it will make the whole situation seem much more real than it does not. I believe that I will not fully feel ready until I arrive in London.

I will be doing some really interesting courses while at the University of Hertfordshire. I’m most looking forward to the two courses focusing on Responsible Tourism. One of them is dedicated to society and culture, the other on economy and environment. These courses will hopefully be beneficial as I seek to focus more on responsible tourism development throughout the last two years of my degree.

I am honoured to have been selected in December to be a part of the CBT Vietnam team and will be travelling to northern Vietnam in August 2013. CBT Vietnam is a fantastic initiative from Capilano University, Hanoi Open University and the PATA Foundation that aims to deliver tourism training and enhance the economic capacity of ethnic minorities living in the Sapa region, particularly groups such as the Red Dao and Black H’mong. We will be working with mainly women from the villages and facilitating training that will improve their home-stays and business opportunities. I hope to discuss this project and my involvement at greater length on my blog soon! Additionally, I hope the courses I will be taking at UH will allow me to offer a unique perspective to the CBT Vietnam team.

Christmas baking at my parents’ house.

This Christmas season was a very busy one and I definitely feel as if I need to have a vacation from my vacation! It was lovely to spend some time at home with my family and do some baking with my mum. My niece is growing up so fast and she’s such a joy to be around. It makes me really happy to hear her call me “Auntie Cait” in her cheerful little voice. The Christmas season also meant lots of parties and it was fun sharing drinks and stories with great friends, new and old. We even rang in the new year at a lively house party wearing fancy clothes! I haven’t done that in quite a few years and it was a great reminder that I prefer spending the evening at home with a board game and a glass of champagne. That being said, it was wonderful to celebrate with my husband and best friends.

Feature photo of London found on Pinterest, unknown artist.

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