Surprise! We moved to Europe...
Quite the little new year's surprise, eh? Yes, Collin and I packed up our house, rented it out for a year, put our belongings in storage, and brought only the necessities in one suitcase each and a backpack. We are going to be nomads for a while. Luckily I have had a freelance side job for the past two years and am able to work from anywhere so I decided to take my freelance gig and hit the road with Collin.
The two ways we found the idea of moving overseas to be more feasible was TrustedHousesitters.com and Workaway.info. These websites are a travelers dream.
A few months back we started applying to different house sitting and WorkAway opportunities and lo and behold we got replies from different people saying they would love to have us! We were ecstatic! Check out the websites if you have a hankering for travel with free room and board.
This idea of moving overseas has been floating in our heads for a while and we finally made the crazy decision to act on it. Collin and I both have travelled Europe, Collin way more than me, but we had never been together. Traveling Europe takes time (it's a big place) and we didn't want to be rushed in taking a couple weeks off work to try and fit in all our top spots. So, we decided to embark on a great adventure. We would love for you to tag along with us.
First I must note that our trip did not get off to a great start. The night before our flight was due to leave we were in the midst of getting ready for bed - toothbrush in hand - when my phone rings. It was 10pm and my phone never rings (who calls people anymore?) and it was an 800 number. I answer and my stomach dropped as an automated message said our flight had been cancelled. Now, this wouldn't normally be a big deal but we had used Expedia and booked two separate legs to our flight. Which meant that although American Airlines had booked us on the following day's flight, I had to get our Icelandair flight moved too. I was on the phone for hours until around 12am when I finally got ahold of someone to move our flight (for a hefty fee of course).
It was a horrible night, stressful, and anxiety-filled. My one piece of advice from that portion is to not use a third party to book your flights. I used Expedia looking to save a bit of money but their customer service was horrible and it would have saved me a major headache had I not used them. Go straight to the source. Book directly with the airlines. Lesson learned.
Stressed and anxious we tried to get some sleep. On the bright side we had another day to get everything situated before we headed off.
Our new flight left at 7:10 a.m. which meant we had to be at the airport at 5:10 a.m. - yippee. My dad graciously got up at the butt crack of dawn on his day off, made us breakfast, and drove us to the airport for the start of a very long day.
More than 24 hours later, yes you read that right, we arrived in Frankfurt. Luckily, or unluckily for some, we had three layovers to stretch our legs.
Unfortunately Collin cannot sleep on flights. A problem I am not familiar with. He was a zombie by the time we had our final layover - a very well mannered zombie.
My favorite flight and layover was in Reykjavik, Iceland with Icelandair. Fantastic airport. Can't wait to visit the country one day - it's on our list.
They had a tiny northern lights show for us on the plane.
We landed in Frankfurt, Germany exhausted and hungry and our hostess was waiting at the airport to get us. We will be house sitting and pet sitting for her while she goes on holiday until the end of January. We loaded up our suitcases in her SUV and headed for her house, about an hour away. I was exhausted but so glad to have landed safely. We arrived at her home in an idyllic German village. It is small, cozy, and warm. Just perfect for us!
After a shower, a hearty meal, and some coffee we were feeling a bit more human.
We had a very strenuous uphill walk with our hostess and her dogs and tried to keep our eyes open until it was a suitable time for bed. She was surprised we made it up the very large hill what with being up for over 24 hours. Fortunately we made it until bedtime and didn't suffer too badly from jet lag.
We are so excited for this adventure! Check back soon for more to the beginning of our European journey!