Who am I? (Without wanting to sound too existential)

Hi! My name is Lucy and I want to write about books and travel.

Why do I want to do that? I like books and travel!

I am shy, quiet and I find it hard to make conversation. Wow, that felt a bold thing to go just straight on out and open with, but I have to get it out there. It’s taken me years to accept that I am a quiet, shy person, who overthinks every single social situation that I’m ever in. Unless I am merry to the tune of three gin and tonics, I will never be the loudest person in a group. I think too much about what I should say to say it. Even right now, I am really wondering if “Hi!” was the right opener to this blog. Was the exclamation mark too much? Will that have put everyone off, will they read that and be like, hell no exit this page. I have to carry on though, or I will never get past the first post.

There is nothing wrong with being quiet. It is who I am. However, it can play havoc when I’m with friends and I have a real cool anecdote but no voice to say it with. As a result, a lot of my stories go untold. And I do have stories. I can just never think of them at the right time, or if I do think of them, I don’t have the confidence to say them. Sometimes I even go so far as to pretend I haven’t visited a city or a country, so that another person can proceed to do all the talking and list off the things I should do and see when I get there.

Ever been to Paris?

Oh no, it’s on my list, though.

Reader, I have been to Paris. More than once, actually. I have been and done all the things you should do there to collect your tourist stamps. Notre Dame? Yes. Shakespeare’s book shop? Yes: I panic bought a collect of P.G. Wodehouse stories so I could get the famous stamp in a book (where is that book now? No clue). Napoleon’s tomb? Yes, I got lost within it trying to find it. The Eiffel Tower? Been to the top and realised I’m not at my most comfortable when at a great height. I’ve had all the classic tourist experiences. Why not say all these things? Lack of confidence and a fear of failure? Does anyone else feel like this?

So here I am, putting pen to paper. Once I can get my head around how WordPress works.

I also want to submit to the universe some book reviews. I love being a part of Bookish-Twitter as an observer, but now feels like the time to put some of my own thoughts out there. Please feel free to send me suggestions of what I should read next (cue groaning noises from my TBR pile).

Another thing you should know about me; I love travel stories. I love travel stories. I want to hear everything about your trip away. Good or bad, what you would recommend, what you ate, how did you travel? All of it. By starting this blog, I am hoping to become part of a community of travel-lovers and book-readers who take part in sharing stories and experiences.

I’m also hoping to learn a few things. I’m not always great at budgeting, I think I can safely say I have definitely spent more than I should have in certain countries, on accommodation, food and experiences. Folks, any tips on recognising when and where I can spend less are welcome.

I have also been very touristy in my travel. I hit up the places my Lonely Planet guide tells me, and the rest of their readership, to see. Which is great, and I am grateful to have had the opportunity to travel to the places I have, but I’m trying to learn more about getting away from the crowds. I want to be more independent in finding experiences, and I like to see how other people approach their travel and itineraries.

Being shy, and I’m sorry to circle back to it again, I often find that I feel at my most comfortable in a brand new place. The opportunities it offers to be in a completely different setting and to be free of the things that restrain me mean I don’t have to worry about being awkward – I’m new here, it’s ok to be a little lost. Sometimes it’s that feeling of isolation that can really make you feel a part of a new place. You can embrace feeling nervous. So tell me more about where you have been and how that place made you feel.

Finally, I am starting this because I used to be so passionate about writing. It was my dream growing up to be a writer and travelling the world to find my stories and settings. I loved the process of thinking and imagining, researching and planning, and creating characters and plots. When I was 25 I travelled across the USA to research and plan out my first novel. And then I got scared and lost my drive to get up and do it. Maybe I realised I wasn’t very good, or the thought of a stranger reading my work overwhelmed me (it still does), or maybe I just wasn’t that committed. But I love reading and I want to feel that way about writing again. I want to tell my stories.

I am hoping to use this time, a global pandemic when none of us can go anywhere, to work on something that used to mean so much to me. Then, when all this is over and we can hit the road again, I’ll have some new places on my list and a few new tricks up my sleeve.

So, there we are: this is why and what I am hoping to achieve. Please do feel free to comment but know that I may be too anxious to reply immediately. I once saw a tweet commenting that there should be a word for the feeling you get when you receive a message that is so meaningful and important to acknowledge that you can’t acknowledge it. That’s probably what I will be doing! It’s all a work in progress.

Published by luggageandscribble

Oh hey, just a girl who loves reading.

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