Saturday, February 26, 2011

Day Twenty: Where in the World?

I fully intended to have this up before day's end, but it didn't happen.  Better some time than no time, right?  Day 20 of the "30-Day Photo Challenge" asks me to post a picture of somewhere I'd love to travel.  I tried to narrow it down to one place, but I just can't.   With so many places throughout the world that I'd like to see in person, it's impossible to choose just one.  I've narrowed it down to four specific places and one "anywhere that looks like this" place.  These are in no particular order since I want to visit each location for different reasons, and there's no way to rank which would be my favorite without going there first.  I won't list everything I'd like to see in each place since that could take hours.  Just want to share the main reason(s) and a couple of pictures. 

So away we go.  Well, not really.  More like "away I dream."

I have always been fascinated with Greek history, art, architecture, mythology and literature. There is also something almost spiritual to me to stand in a place where so many have stood before me. Just Google the word "Greece" and click on images. Scroll down and drool at all the blue. It's breathtaking.


As interesting as I'm sure I would find Chinese culture, I really wish to go there for one reason: I want to hug a baby panda.  I know that may seem silly, but I am totally nuts about pandas.  Several years ago, I came home to a surprise my husband had recorded on the DVR:  a special about the "panda nursery" at the Wolong Reserve in the Sichuan province.  The documentary was all about the panda breeding program at the reserve and how successful it has been in birthing baby pandas.  It just turned my panda obsession up about 300%.  I Googled the reserve for more information and discovered that visitors could pay to be a "panda keeper" for the day, including a visit to the baby pandas.  I made John promise that someday he would take me to China so that I could hug a baby panda.  Unfortunately, the Wolong Reserve was devastated in the 2008 earthquake that struck China.  The pandas were moved to another location and to my knowledge aren't currently open to the public.   However, there is a panda research center in Chengdu that for $145 dollars gives visitors five minutes with a baby panda to cuddle and take pictures.  I know some people want to see the Eiffel Tower; I just want to hug a panda. 


There are so many places in Africa I'd love to visit, but between the wars, violent crimes, health risks, and everything else going on, it just seems like such a risk.  Everything I read about locations that are safer mentions a bordering country where there is constant violence.  I've always wanted to take a trip to Africa with a humanitarian group, but now that I'm a  mom, I just feel like I need to be more cautious so that I can be around to watch her grow up.  I would still like to go to Madagascar, though.  From what I've read

Baby indri

 it's relatively safe (as long as you don't bother the stray dogs).  I'm fascinated by all the animals and plants that are indigenous only to Madagascar, especially since some of them are rather bizarre.  I have a feeling that the time will come when so many of them will cease to exist except maybe in zoos since we humans have a knack for destroying all things natural.


Vatican City at Night

The Coliseum
If I were ranking these, Italy would probably be at the top of my list as far as general places I'd like to visit.  If they had pandas, I might just move there.  And while I'd like to tour all of Italy, eating and drinking as many calories as possible, I'd especially like to visit Rome.  As with Greece, I'm fascinated by the history, literature, art, architecture, and so on, possibly because there are so many similarities.   There is a reason so many movies and television shows are set during ancient Roman times (and I watch them ALL).  I've spent quite a bit of time researching a a possible trip to Rome and I can't imagine being a "whirlwind" tour that only gave me a few hours or even couple of days there.  I want to see the Roman ruins,visit Bioparco (I'm a serious "zoobie"), visit Vatican City (and as many other churches outside the walls as I can squeeze in since I love church architecture), tour as many museums as possible, and about a million other things. 
Basilica di San Clemente

Another place in Italy that I recently decided I'd like to visit is the ruins at Pompeii.  Discovery recently aired a documentary about the last day in Pompeii and all of the discoveries made there by archaeologists.  So much of the town was almost perfectly preserved (including the bodies of  some of the victims which is totally freaky).  So much has been learned about the culture and art of the time through discoveries at Pompeii.  I would  love to see it all for myself.  

Anywhere that has water like this

I honestly don't care where I go to find this water.  Just once, I want to swim in clear, cool, beautiful ocean water like this.  Just looking at it makes me feel more tranquil and refreshed. 

All of this traveling in my mind has made me tired, so I'm off to visit one of my favorite places in the world--my bed. 

Goodnight all.


ME said...

The water looks amazing!

a.j.g. said...

In the words of Liz Lemon, "I want to go to there!"