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This week I learned an important lesson: I can survive 48 hours without checking my email. I’ve been way too connected recently – constantly checking social media, my email, and just looking up stuff on the internet – and I decided that it was time for a (mini) digital detox to kick off the New Year, because it’s ridiculous how attached I’ve become to my iPhone (considering that twelve months ago, I didn’t even have a phone and I managed to be without a phone four nearly four years!)
I also learned that snow isn’t as bad as I had remembered it, as I experienced Germany’s first two snow days of this winter. While it wasn’t much fun to run on snow, I felt like a little kid again when I took my nieces out to build a snowman and to throw some snowballs. A stroll along a frozen lake surrounded by a white winter wonderland even was among my favorite days this past days. And drinking a delicious mulled wine to warm ourselves afterwards!
I am now wrapping up my time with family and friends, packing my bags for my trip to Helsinki and Stockholm next week, borrowing winter clothes right and left (5F / -15C? Bring it on!). But first, I’ll spend a few days in Berlin, where I’ll be catching up with some friends before leaving Germany again. I am excited to return to the city that’s been so good to me every time I visited in the past few months, and even more excited to get to know Finland and Sweden after that. Knowing that I’ll be spending a week in the freezing temperatures of Scandinavia, I also dedicated a lot of time to travel planning over the past few days, mapping out my trip to Hong Kong and the Philippines later this month. I am stoked to finally visit the Philippines, a destination that has been on my wish list for so long, and I’ve been getting inspiration for my trip from posts like this one or this one.
I am ready to hit the road again, even though being home for the Holidays felt glorious, and I was happy that I had the chance to catch up with some friends who I hadn’t seen in years, and to take some time off work. Bonus: The reduced number of emails that arrived in my inbox during the Holidays made it easier to do that guilt-free and I am already feeling recharged after my hectic travel schedule in Sri Lanka.
My next Polaroid will be coming from Finland – if you have any tips for Stockholm or Helsinki, or for Hong Kong and the Philippines, feel free to share them in the comments below!