"Life is just what you do between trips" suziezed's Profile

Never too old to learn (at least I hope not!)

On July 13, 2012 (a Friday) I arrived in Stockholm, Sweden, and a few hours later, after a surprisingly good sleep, I traveled to Uppsala, some 70km north, where I will be living for the next two years.

Next Monday, September 3, 2012, I begin a two-year Master's program in International Health at Uppsala University. It's exciting and a bit scary all at the same time. How will the education here (which is English I hasten to add - not Swedish) compare to the workload and level of difficulty of that I experienced during my undergrad? Will I be able to live up to the high standards I expect of myself academically? Will I meet a handsome, single and wealthy Swedish man who wants to take me on a round the world trip ... er, sorry, got a bit off track there. Stay tuned to find out more.

Travel - more addictive than heroin?

I didn't discover traveling until I was in my thirties. I was living in Calgary and working at Northern Telecom (those were the days). I was telling a coworker about a show I had seen the night before on PBS that was about the discovery of the magnificent frescoes at Ajanta in India. I said "I'd love to go there." And he said "Why don't you?" I had no response as to why I couldn't or didn't. So I did.

I left a well-paying job, a really cute guy (you know who you are) and my routine life behind. It was not a little scary. My jitters weren't helped by the fact that less than two weeks before my departure Rajiv Gandhi was blown apart by a suicide bomber in southern India - a part of the country that everyone had assured me was safe (or safer than the North).

I was also going at completely the wrong time of year (can't remember why now) and it was hot, hot, hot. On my arrival in Mumbai they had the heaviest monsoon in nearly four decades. I was stuck there for a week because no trains could run there was so much water on the ground. I didn't care and tramped around the city in alternating states of bliss and despair. There was a garbage strike on too and I remember a very funny cartoon in the Times of India showing people waiting at a bus stop standing on the piles of garbage and thanking various gods that the garbage workers were on strike otherwise they would have been submerged while waiting for the bus.

In the following 3 years I returned to India twice but never made it to Southeast Asia. My last trip was in 1995 and I am now planning a 6-month return trip in 2006.

I fed my habit with vicarious travel and piddly trips to Reno and Seattle and Ottawa in the years since but then got a big fix in 2002 when I was gone for 6 months from Jan-July.

I went to Burma, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia, Thailand, England and Italy. Yes those last two are right.

It was quite a trip and it will keep me going for a while. I'm currently picking up credits to go to University full-time in September 2007 but I've decided I won't survive without a long trip until school is over (2010 or 2011). So it's off to India in 2006.

Who'd like to meet up with me on the road?

  • Intro Updated Aug 27, 2012
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Comments (30)

  • toemayn's Profile Photo
    Jul 20, 2014 at 3:08 PM

    I hope that your special day is full of fun and happiness and everything that you enjoy.

  • aadil's Profile Photo
    Jul 20, 2014 at 8:23 AM

    Wishing you a very Happy Birthday Susan, may all your travel dreams come true!!!

    • suziezed's Profile Photo
      Jul 20, 2014 at 9:21 PM

      Thanks Aadil - sorry I haven't been to see you in such a long time, I am in Kerala right now but just too lazy and cheap to fly to Mumbai. One day we will meet again but I'm not sure when.

    • aadil's Profile Photo
      Jul 22, 2014 at 11:06 AM

      Great to hear that, enjoy your stay in Kerala.

  • Bokhari76's Profile Photo
    Jul 20, 2014 at 3:54 AM

    Happy Birthday Susan !
    Wish you many happy returns of the day

  • aadil's Profile Photo
    Jul 20, 2013 at 2:21 PM

    A very Happy Birthday to you Susan!!!

    • suziezed's Profile Photo
      Jul 24, 2013 at 12:40 AM

      Thanks Aadil - I spent my birthday on the way to Riga (from Stockholm on the ferry). It was a wonderful few days and I definitely want to spend more time in Riga. I am taking full advantage of being in Sweden this summer and am visiting places in Europe that always seemed out of reach and/or too expensive when I was based in Canada. Having a great time! Maybe see you in 2014 when I hope to be in India.

    • aadil's Profile Photo
      Jul 24, 2013 at 12:26 PM

      That's great, I am sure you will enjoy it over there before you head back to India in 2014!!!

  • toemayn's Profile Photo
    Jul 20, 2013 at 4:57 AM

    Hope your birthday is filled with all the fun you can handle!

  • aadil's Profile Photo
    Jul 20, 2012 at 5:24 AM

    A very Happy Birthday to you, Susan!!! May all your travel dreams come true!!!

  • raykey's Profile Photo
    Jul 20, 2009 at 3:05 PM

    Happy Birthday and best wishes from the U.K. Have a nice time on your special day.

  • YVRDave's Profile Photo
    Jul 20, 2009 at 8:06 AM

    Happy Birthday

  • Donna_in_India's Profile Photo
    Jul 19, 2009 at 7:03 PM

    Hi Susan - have a very happy birthday! Love your beautiful home city!

  • traveloturc's Profile Photo
    Jul 20, 2007 at 1:51 PM

    Happy birthday to you from Istanbul / Turkiye ..I wish that you realize all your dreams ...good luck

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“Travel is my drug of choice.”

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Susan M
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