Looking Back on 2015

“The greatest adventure you could ever take is to live the life of your dreams.” These are the words of Oprah Winfrey and she could not have said it better. As an old year passes and a new one begins, I can’t help but be captured by her words of wisdom. Like many of us, I find myself reflecting upon what dreams or goals I have realized this past year. I usually do set out some kind of plan or rough road map of where I want to go in any given year. This has become especially important since I have begun travelling again. So when Hubby and I decided to visit Morocco in April, I knew I just had to take a camel trek into the desert.

This dream goes back to 1970 when I saw my first camel in the Negev Desert while backpacking around Israel.  I never got to actually ride one then but always thought it would be a neat thing to do. Unfortunately, the dream was not what I had envisioned and what the guide books had said it would be. My overnight camel trek to the edge of the Saharan Desert turned out to be one of the most gruelling undertakings I have ever experienced. None the less, it was well worth it, and I would do it again if I had the opportunity. You can read more about my adventure in my April post, A Saharan Adventure.

This adventure and the story I had written about it inspired me to reflect upon all the places I have visited and written about in 2015. For the past two years, Word Press has sent me a summary of all my posts to inform me of which ones garnered the most attention. To my surprise my camel story didn’t get as much attention as I thought it would which may have been because I was unable to publish any pictures with it. Who knows? The stories that got the most views and comments were those I wrote while in Cambodia. Phnom Penh Revisited, Escape to Kampot and Battambang – the Heart and Soul of Cambodia were at the top of my reader’s lists.

Even though it has been Thailand I have headed to for the past eight years, it has always been Cambodia, which I have visited three times, that somehow has impacted me the most and definitely helped me to grow in so many ways. I have nothing but complete admiration for the endurance, openness, and basic sweetness of the Cambodian people. Theirs is a story that is worth the telling and is probably why I am so motivated to write about them and the complex history that has shaped them.

After I return home from my winter travels, my focus changes from travel to adjusting to life in the tiny fishing village of Victoria Beach. My posts over the summer and fall have meandered from short trips taken to places nearby or further afield and to learnings in my own life. Two recent posts entitled A Recipe for Ageing and A Moment of Happiness received more response than I thought they ever would since they were about rather weighty topics. However, I should not be surprised as both of them speak to certain aspects of our human condition, a subject that has always interested me and apparently many of my readers.

I have asked myself if I accomplished most of the things I had set out to do last year this time? I certainly did when it came to travelling but not nearly enough in my writing. Somehow life simply gets in the way of doing more of it, and I must confess that my lack of discipline is also to blame. I shall promise myself to not get too worked up about not accomplishing all I intended by simply putting them on the agenda for 2016. There is still time to get really serious about the writing if I could just learn to let some other things go. Ah, but it’s the ‘letting go’ which is the difficult part.

As I said the travel part and where to travel to is the easy bit. I will be fulfilling another travel dream this coming year by going to South America, specifically to Ecuador. For many years I have read about the wonders of this tiny country but I am not talking about a trip to the Galapagos. What intrigues me is why it’s become a sought after haven for ex-pats, for its indigenous culture, and its social systems. It’s also noted for its crafts and markets so I will be searching out these for my small importing business. In March, I will meet up with Hubby in Buenos Aires in Argentina where we will lap up the life of this very cosmopolitan city and perhaps even learn how to tango. I don’t plan to do too much travelling as that becomes very expensive. Instead I am hoping that by staying close to our small rented studio that I will be able to carry out my goal of doing more writing this coming year. Ideas and comments for what I could write on or improve upon are always welcome.

A very Happy New Year to you all!

 Picture Galley for 2015



14 thoughts on “Looking Back on 2015

  1. Hi Betty: So glad to hear you are beginning another exciting adventure in 2016. Loved the pictures and love hearing about your trips. I can’t imagine a camel ride in the desert and it certainly isn’t on my bucket list, but I do admire your spirit of adventure!
    Have fun and keep us posted!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I enjoyed your blog, Betty. I missed your Moroccan camel trip, but that was when my life was in turmoil and I wasn’t paying much attention to emails. However, when you come back, maybe I can hear more about it. I have a picture of John on a camel in Morocco about 50 years ago! I have a question which may show my ignorance about the world. But what do you mean by lady boy? Take care and have a great trip to SA.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Jill – FYI a “lady boy” is a male who has become a female. There are many in Thailand because this country has become a leader in the field of all that is required to carry out such a medical feat. At first, and still in many cases, they face a lack of appreciation but thankfully this is beginning to change. I found the pageant most moving and uplifting. Hope all is well and you are enjoying the onslaught of winter. Will talk more about Morocco and my camel experience.


  3. Hi Bets,
    Nice blog…..and lovely pics! Happy New Year to both you and Graham. Have a wonderful winter in SA. Writing to you from #315 at Pachkit House……can still feel your spirit here!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Sally

      So good to hear from you. I am feeling nostalgic for Chiang Mai and you two already. When did you arrive and how long will you be there? Are you still following your tried and true plan of Viet Nam next, etc.? Nothing wrong with that if it’s still fun to do it. I am keeping fingers crossed that I will find some neat stuff in Ecuador to bring back with me. I am dying to know what you are finding or will find in Thailand this year. How about those pants? Are they still the rage I wonder? I am hoping that my friend, Toi, will be coming back to Annapolis Royal this year and can bring me some. Just had a brief note from Diane and really look forward to seeing her and Mike again. It will be a good way to get my trip started. My old friend, Cathy, is dithering on whether she should meet up with me in Ecuador. I’m not holding my breath as we’ve been through this before.

      Would love for you to keep in touch over the winter if you can. Enjoy your time there and all my best to you and Mike for a great 2016!

      Love Betty

      On Sat, Jan 2, 2016 at 2:38 AM, BetsTravelsAbout wrote:



  4. Thanks for your year in review via pictures. I really enjoy all your posts. Happy New Year to you and Graham. Love and prayers, Helen xixixixixixixixixixixixi


    • Hi dear friend,
      We loved your “new year” blog–all your thoughts and comments—so many of which sound familiar and touch our hearts with inspiration and awe! It doesn’t surprise me to read which one of your blogs from 2015 was the most popular–especially for a person in Michigan who just turned 70!! We are up north staying the week in our log house hiking and snow-shoeing. There should be enough snow during our next visit to cross country ski—anything is great if we are out-doors.
      We thought of you on Christmas eve—wonder if you were able to enjoy the BEAUTIFUL Christmas moon??!! A feature we can both share where ever our feet our planted and touching on this fragile earth!! We will look forward to more news,photos and thoughts as you travel this winter.
      I am still waiting to hear back from Jim’s cousin whose daughter lives in Quito.(sp?)
      Love and hugs, Sherry & Jim

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thank you Sherry as always for your kind words. Sounds like you and Jim had a lovely, snowy Christmas, or perhaps I should say a nice old fashioned one with Mother Nature. We all have so much to be thankful for in our place in this world. May 2016 be a wonderful year and let’s hope we get to see you at some point in it.


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