Cancun Valladolid Tulum, Mexico

Cenote Mexico

2-9th October 2016

Cancun was the beginning of something special.

## The Lonely Mr S

Going to my room to change for the pool (yeah, the hostel has a pool!) I notice a man lingering behind. Let’s call him Mr. S. He follows me in and it turns out we’re roommates. I tell him I’m going to go swimming and he says “yeah, I might too actually”. He precedes to ask me some pretty strange questions and then I decide to turn around to put my wallet in the locker. Just in case. I turn back and see everything Mr. S has to offer.

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Mexico City, Mexico

Mexico City Art

28th September – 2nd October 2016

Mexico City. Not a place I originally planned on coming but it was a stopover on the flight so there was no reason not to stop for a few days and explore.

In the airport, I witnessed some great kindness from a gentleman in the immigration queue who helped a lady who was struggling with her young son and umpteen bags. He spoke to the immigration people to get her to the front of the queue and then helped her with her bags whilst the majority of passengers just politely ignored the lady. He then went back to his place in the queue and continued to wait patiently. I made a point of first of all trying to help even though I didn’t speak the language and secondly telling the gentleman what a nice thing he did. It’s the least you should do witnessing generosity.

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Toronto, Canada

Niagara Falls Toronto

13-18th September 2016

Arriving in Toronto was one of the most nerve-racking experiences entering a city so far. My sister was helping set me up with a friend of a friend for a place to stay but nothing was concrete just yet. That, up to this point, has been fine. The issue that made this particularly worrying was that, given the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) was on, there was no back up. Hostels, budget hotels, all booked up. I hoped it would work itself out and evidently my nerves were showing when I was communicating with other people.

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Montreal, Canada

Party in the park Montreal

8-13th September 2016

Way back in China, two fellow travellers said I should come to Montreal when I’m in Canada. They were sure I’d have somewhere to stay. Now a few days before I arrive in Toronto and Veronica has said I can stay with her. The excitement starts to bubble. I’d get to see newly made friends a second time and see a city I hadn’t originally planned on!

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Panama Canal

9-12th October 2016

Panama City. I only have two points of reference for this place. Panama Canal. Though I’m not even sure where I heard about that and also on Prison Break, the TV show. I may even be wrong here. I believe Panama was their getaway location. Where there’s nothing around, no extradition laws and sunny beaches.

Turns out there’s mosquitos too!

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Los Angeles, USA

LA Art

18-28th September 2016

LA, baby! I came expecting sunshine, attractive people and everything being super expensive. It’s a god send that Marvin, from our BIGAM gang, has kindly agreed to put me up for the week. That’s one less extravagant expense needed.

The first day was action packed. Marvin picked me up from the airport. We went to Randy’s Donuts (often seen on TV as the place with the GIGANTIC donut outside!), then to a local look out point on top of a hill to see the whole of LA. Then the beach and then an abandoned silo which provided another great look out at night. Marvin’s right. The pollution does at least give you some incredible colours at sunrise.

Pollution Sunset LA

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New York, USA

New York Tennis

1-8 September 2016

My first destination on my second half of the trip.

I thought I would be dying for this moment to come. Instead, I find myself upset at leaving a great job in London and being able to continue experiencing London like a tourist having never done that before. On top of that, there are now such high expectations for myself as to what travelling is like after such an amazing first half that I’m apprehensive as to whether this trip will meet them.

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