The blog is not finished! But after the Theft (yes, capital letters), the want/need to update the blog took second fiddle to dealing with the Theft and just finishing the trip sans computer. Since being home, it's been hard to get that motivation to complete it. But I will. Ever so slowly. Please be patient!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

RTW in Three Days –or- My Practice Run

Every year, in August, Saskatoon hosts what I can quite possibly call my absolute favorite festival of the summer season: Folkfest. It is a three day festival that can really only be described as a chance to do a mini Round the World trip without leaving the city. By buying a Cdn$14 passport, you get unlimited entrance to all the different cultural pavilions and unlimited use of the special bus routes created to shuttle festival goers between all the pavilions. Not only is it one of the most diverse and exciting festivals, but also one of the most affordable. If you go just the entertainment at each pavilion, you pay just the cost of the passport. Food and drinks are extra, but it is still a steal of a deal.

This year, there were 18 pavilions. I made it to all 18, in a practice run of my upcoming RTW trip. And from these three days, I’ve learned a few things

1. Winning the Most Passport Stamps game is tiring

Oy vey. While the achievement of having visited every pavilion available in just a

View Passport Stamps

three day span is commendable, it is also exhausting. You are on a whirlwind tour, keeping one eye on the entertainment, one eye on the bus schedual, one eye on the clock, and one eye on your hands to make sure they put the food in your mouth and not your forehead. It’s not as bad as last year though(they had 20 pavilions last year). But still, I admit that you do miss a lot when you go out with the goal to hit as many as possible. You don’t really come out of it with much other than sore feet and a small feeling of achievment.

2. Solo travel is nice, but so is being with good company

Probably the best thing about this year was I had a good combination of doing me at german Folkfest both by myself and with a few really cool and awesome friends. Near the beginning of each night I was by myself, giving me the ability to do my “see all the pavilions I can” race. I could see what I want, leave when I want, look at what I want. I didn’t have to answer to anyone. Contrast to the amazing time I had with my friends Sarah and Chelle, who showed me just what Folkfesting with them is all about. Booze!!!! Checking out hot guys and gals. Had I not been with them, I would not have had cuba libre the opportunity to be at the Scottish Pavilion to see the Mass Bands, which were amazing.

Traveling alone is great for the flexibility you give yourself, but with a group, being forced to compromise opens up doors to experiences you may never have actually considered as an option, and more than likely will love.

3. Never be afraid to try new foods

I like food. Not really that big of a secret. And I’m not really that picky when it comes to what I am willing to eat. I used to be. Not so anymore. At Folkfest, everyone has the opportunity to try foods from many different cultures. When I go, there are definitely certain foods I have to go for. Jerk Chicken at thePickled Herring - Not so Yummy Caribbean pavilion, haggis at the Scottish pavilion(don’t gag, it’s actually really really good. Kinda like really moist and mushy meatloaf), and lefse at the Norwegian pavilion. Food is an important aspect of every culture and can actually have a very interesting history behind it(check out the history on the creation of carrot cake, it’s actually quite fascinating). Still doesn’t mean I will actually like the food, but at least I’m trying it. 

4. Booze = Good times

Really . . . need I say more?  Much like food, booze can also be a very good way of experiencing a culture. That, and having a raucous good time!


drinking ouzo


<------ Guiness

                                        Ouzo ----->


Folkfest was great times. Not really a full practice run for my trip, but it’s fun to pretend!  Less than 10 weeks now!

Thanks Chelle, Sarah and Sarah’s mom for a great time!!!!

1 comment:

  1. oohhh... Ouzo! Many good nights started with a shot of ouzo! Sounds like you are getting really excited about your trip. 10 weeks will fly by- let us know when you set sail! (and if you need any mexican food recs- we're your go-to!)