Thumbing and Bumming, A Ballybunion experience for the books.


It’s exactly what you think.

One of the oldest methods of getting around in the book. It is now I can say, I too, have done it(successfully).

After leaving Galway, I decided I wanted to go to a beach. Being from Florida, I guess it’s no surprise that I was dying to swim in the ocean. So, I checked out, headed for the train station, and started making my way out west.

The journey consisted of 1 train and 1 bus, all together it was about 5 hours, and I landed in a town called Listowel.

The map was showing me that I was about 10 miles from the beach, but there are no busses that drop you off there. Damn. So close, yet so far. But I was determined to get there, and so I took off on foot.

It is, after all, Irelandso with having a pub to choose from literally every 5 steps you take, I stopped and had my much deserved beer.

Here is where I met the bartender, her name was Claire. She was a very pretty, younger looking woman who seemed to know everyone who was there by name. In between her bursts of being bombarded by thirsty Irish folks, she’d swing by and chat with me.

Ballybunion. I told her that’s where I was headed. She said it was beautiful and definitely a must see. Then, with her heavy accent, she asked me if I was “tumbing

Barley understanding what she was saying, I gave her a confused look. She repeated herself, and did the “thumbs up” hitch hiking gesture. Ohh thumbing! The idea had not even crossed my mind, so of course I answered with a yes, yes I am. She was certain I would get a ride, since it is a smaller town and everyone was friendly for the most part. So I finished my drink and continued off on foot, in the direction in which she pointed.

“Am I really going to do this right now?”  I asked myself.

In my head: Shit, it’s a 10 mile walk, it’s extremely hot, the road is busy, there’s no sidewalk,the cars are flying passed me…

I’m cracking up,  I was sweating, but still dying laughing cause I just could not believe I was actually doing this. Still laughing at myself, I stuck my thumb out and kept walking.

Not even 5 minutes went by and someone pulled over for me. It was a guy and a girl, the guy was in a wheelchair, driving one of those crazy handicapped little black vans, and the girl was in the passenger’s seat. They seemed ok to me and so I hopped in. We were chatting it up, you know, “what’s your name, where are you from, where are you going” blah blah blah the usual. The girl mentioned that we were coming up on a bar that her sister and brother in law owned and asked if I wanted to stop.

You already know my answer to that.

So we stopped, and there was a good crowd of people there. Everyone knew each other and they introduced me to the bunch. It was great, it felt just like home. The weather was nice so all the people there were very happy. One girl said it’s the first time in a long while that she’s gotten to wear her sunglasses. Crazy how back home we take the sunshine for granted.

Anyways, after that, they took me the rest of the way to Ballybunion. Filled with gratitude, I probably thanked them a million times.

Finally, I finally made it.


Not going to lie, the environment made me feel a little bit out of place. Mostly everyone there was on a family vacation, I was a fish out of water. I could definitely feel the judgement from people as I walked around, but screw it, I bet they all wish they could have as much fun as me.

The only hostel I found was completely full, shit. Gotta keep looking. Still don’t really care though, worst case scenario, I set up shop on the beach.

Walking, walking, walking, taking in the awesome views, and then…

boom! I found it. A small restaurant/bar/hotel on the top of the hill.  Nothing too special, but not terrible. The people hanging out there seemed alright, good location, why not?

I go inside and ask if they have any rooms and sure enough they did. Here I met a chick named Fiona. She was pretty much like me. Working at the hotel check in counter to get by, living by the beach. Yea, you get it.

She was amazed that I was going around the whole country by myself and kept saying I was so brave. Anyways, she got me a sweet deal on the room because she thinks girls should look out for one another. Something I’ve spent damn near my whole life preaching made its way back to me. I was so excited.

This was the view from my balcony


Not quite sure where I’m headed next, but I guess anything can happen!

much love













The Gift Of Galway

I arrived at the airport in Shannon and had no idea what to do where to go from there. It was 8am so I knew I at least had all day to figure it out. As soon as I got off the flight and went outside, I spotted an old man sitting on a bench, smoking, who appeared to be waiting for a bus. It was then I simply asked him “Where should I go?”

He recommended heading to Galway to start, mentioning there was plenty to do and pointing out that it would be easy to find a hostel to stay at as well. He told me he came to Ireland for the weekend, 25 years ago.

I thanked him for the help, went back inside the airport to a little vending machine that printed bus tickets, and got mine right then and there. It cost me $11 for the ticket, and the bus got there about 30 minutes later.

The ride was very smooth and there was a lot of beautiful, green scenery to watch pass by while looking out the window.IMG_8185


I managed to find this hostel when I finally got to Galway.filename-kinlay-hostel.jpg

After checking in, I ended up walking for the remainder of the day. I made sure to drink a Guinness (or 2) at the pub. Then by the time 6 or 7 rolled around I was so exhausted from all the travel, I felt disgusting, and I was ready to call it a day. So, that’s just what I did.

The next day I got on a bus and here’s what I saw:


After another day of covering a lot of ground, I’m calling it a day, early. Tomorrow I plan to migrate but I have yet to know where, or how. Stay tuned!





Talk About “Risk It for the Biscuit” and why it’s totally necessary


      Chasing your dreams takes a lot of courage, there’s no doubt about it.

Sometimes, you find yourself taking a path that nobody else around you is, and that’s okay. Everyone has different goals and different aspirations.

My number one priority is travel, and I’ve risked a lot to do it.

I’ve ended relationships, said goodbye to more friends than I could count, missed out on time with my family and quit a job that I felt very comfortable at.



But I embrace the changes with open arms, and realize that new opportunities will always come. Those things I’ve left behind are so small compared to how awesome it is to have a chance to embark on a vast journey and see the world.

The risks are worth it. 


4 reasons to embrace your inner badass and take that solo trip

Not until we are lost do we begin to understand ourselves.

-Henry David Thoreau

I believe everyone should take a trip alone and here’s 4 main reasons why.


  1. the freedom: Nothing is more exhilarating than the thrill of knowing the world is yours to conquer. You are free from the lifestyle you chose to leave behind, free from being chained down to an apartment lease and free from the thoughts of feeling like you’re missing out on all that life has to offer.

 2. friends: when you travel alone it is easier to meet people, and having contacts all across the globe is the best type of network one can dream of. Of course you have trust your gut when it comes down to judging a person’s character and there’s nothing wrong with being skeptical at first, but I have made some good friends along the way who I still keep in contact with.

3. experience: Sometimes, pictures just don’t do a destination justice, and the feeling of actually climbing that mountain in Japan or swimming in the crystal clear blue waters of the gulf coast cannot be replaced. Nobody, not a single person, can take away the memories you have made, and no two stories are the same.

4.personal growth: My favorite reason of them all. Going out and seeing other cultures and participating in social norms besides the ones you know as your own, develop a person into a more rounded individual with more perspectives on lifestyle then they may have had before. I believe solo travel makes you more self efficient and confident. You learn to cope with feeling homesick, you become an expert at feeling comfortable when lost, you learn that if you speed that power walk up to a light jog you will make that flight. You learn that it’s damn good to be alive.

People who travel alone have the hearts of lions and I never fail to admire them for their adventurous spirits.


The clothes on your back

Why I chose to only bring a backpack


You won’t need as much gear as you think you do.  Especially when it comes to clothes. Even as a female, I will say, when you start to pack all the shit from your closet, it’s just going to sit balled up in your bag. 

Migrating from place to place is easier with a lighter load. Sometimes you get caught in the rain. You could have to walk uphill or through sand on the beach. Whatever it is, rolling a huge suitcase will make your life a lot harder than it has to be, which is why I am a fan of the backpack.




So this is the one I use. It was very affordable and reliable. 65l is more than enough space and it comes with a rain cover which is a must (believe me) . The cushions make it comfortable on your back and you can adjust it according to your hight and what feels best for you. The waist strap comes with most bags but I usually don’t use it, some people do though. It has tons of pockets so you can reach the small things you have without having to dig around. And lastly, when you pull all the straps on the front and make them a bit tighter, it shrinks the bag down, making it fit really well into the overhead compartment of the plane. 

(I once thought it was a good idea to check my shit. When I had a layover and had to switch flights, my bag never switched with me. I went without luggage for 3 days and finally getting it back was a pain in the ass. Needless to say, I now always carry my stuff with me.) 

It’s easier to pack when the temperatures of your destinations are all within a close range. This will help you not have to take up more space carrying bathing suits and jackets at the same time.

Laundry. There are indeed places all over to wash clothes. Hostels often times offer laundry services for a few bucks or you can go to a laundromat. Do everyone around you a favor, take advantage of the washing machines. 

Getting what you need is not hard. Every place I’ve been to so far has had easy to get to convenient stores. So when you do run out of toiletries and shit, have no fear.

I usually make a list of things I want to bring, and then I cross stuff off as I go because I know I can do without. Everyone has different needs so there is no “one size fits all” but this is just the method behind my own madness.