I think in everyone’s life there is always that one place that really changes your life. I saw a post on instagram that asked the question of ‘where have you seen that has changed you’ and it really got me thinking.
I have been to quite a lot of nice places. Beautiful places, funky, scenic, party-esque and others with less polite descriptions but there are very few destinations I have been that have really left a solid mark on me. I think there are two places where I can hold my hand up high and say that they changed me and funnily enough, it’s hard to even pin point why.
The first place was The Grand Canyon. I took a quick trip here while I was on a J1 visa for the summer, where I was living in a one bedroom apartment in Newport Beach, California with nine other girls and not a single piece of furniture to our name (we actually had one fold up chair, but I’m not sure that counts!) until we got evicted and I ended up in a two bed apartment in Huntington with roughly 20+ people (the number was never really solid – there was a lot of coming and going!). So with this many people comes a string of go-getters and ideas. Fast forward a few days and next thing I knew we had two tiny cars rented out and a 7 hour drive ahead of us. By the time we arrived we were sleep deprived, sweaty (really sweaty) and just eager to get this hole in the ground over and done with. I actually always assumed I wouldn’t be wow-ed by the Grand Canyon because it literally is a big hole in the ground but I was so, so wrong. This is the first time I visited somewhere that I could truly describe as ‘magical’. The way you could look out into the distance which looked like a CGI screen or a painted backdrop because of the complete and utter lack of movement and beauty. The red hues and amazing cliff faces were just such a sight to behold and it took my breath away more than I had ever expected it to. I would go back to here in a heartbeat and will never forget the day that I went to visit it. It sounds crazy, but for me there was such a feeling of peace and serenity that just washed over you as you looked across the canyon. It made me want to do more and see more of the amazing things in the world, and ultimately, it changed me.
The second place is Lake Bled. Oh, Lake Bled! This is the type of place that I always saw in amazing Instagram posts and fell in love with. The first glimpse I got of the magical lake was trekking up the hill with my 15kg bag on my back from the bus stop before the actual Lake Bled bus stop (Don’t make that mistake!) to try find our hostel. I was grumpy, tired and sweaty (starting to see a trend here!) and then I saw the lake and the excitement I felt was next level! This was somewhere I had anticipated I would fall in love with, and if only I knew then just how hard I was going to fall. Once again, the only term I can use for this place is magical. I visited just outside peak season so the crowds were very minimal, the weather was still pretty nice and the Lake was as beautiful as ever. There is this feeling of homeliness when you get there and it’s a feeling that you just can’t shake. We met the most polite, friendly people here and while it’s a pretty busy little town you are never too far from immersing yourself in Nature. Honestly, I can’t remember the last time I felt as elated as when I was rowing out onto Bled Island. It’s like a town plucked right out of a fairy-tale, and it showed me what it was really like to fall in love with somewhere.
As I said earlier, I think everyone has that ‘one place’ in their life that changes them for one reason or another. So, What was the place that changed you?