Reflection, mindfulness and putting the world into words

Because exceptional travel moments deserve to be captured on paper

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I want to start off this blog with a question: how many of you guys still write notes and lists by hand?

Awesome, just me then.

Jokes, jokes. If the internet gossip of today is to be believed, my generation is tech-obsessed and digital only. However, the reality is far different, and I know that’s definitely not the case, at least for this blogger. Do not put me in a box, thanks.

While the majority of what I create exists online these days in some form or another, the stories, work and thought that went into it all mostly likely existed first on paper.

travel writing

travel writing

Even as a kid I was always getting in trouble “borrowing” from my stepdad’s beautiful collection of Parker fountain pens, practicing my looping penmanship and pretending to be a famous author, until the day I was gifted some of my own.

Notebook obsessed, master of lists, journaling queen, I am and always have been someone who loves and rejoices in writing by hand. A visual person, as soon as I take the time to write something down, it imprints in one corner or another in my brain, and helps me remember it later on that no note in my iPhone can compare.

And as I get older, I truly enjoy using elegant, beautiful pens to write down my ideas and thoughts on high quality paper, though napkins will do in a pinch. You never know when inspiration will hit, right?

travel writing

travel writing

When I discovered the new Sonnet Special Edition pens from Parker, my heart literally skipped a beat.

A unique collection of four travel designs, the Atlas, Metro, Stratum and Impression, these pens evoke everything that travel means to me, inspired by a universal curiosity to discover the unknown, a personality trait that has propelled me to all seven continents and to build a career around travel writing.

With each pen evoking a specific emotional stage we experience when we travel, the Sonnet Special Edition collection is an ode to every journey we take, and to to inspire those to capture those moments into words to savor forever.

Were these pens designed for me? Let’s say yes.

travel writing

travel writing

And I know I’m not the only one like this either.

There are plenty of other list lovers and notebook hoarders out there who know exactly what I’m talking about, and who always relate when I share my joy for the written world online.

I’ve found that my tribe are the kind of people that enjoy the solid weight of a nice pen in their hand, of premium thick paper that you can smell, and to slowly draw a line through an assignment or job once it’s finished, even if that task was just to take a shower and do laundry (guilty).

travel writing

travel writing

Nowadays it’s so easy to take a quick photo with your phone or camera, and share that travel experience with an infinite amount of people. As a photographer, my constant challenge is to capture a feeling or an emotion in an image, to tell a story with a singular photograph. That’s tricky.

Traveling is an experience people can document easily in pictures but it’s harder to do so in words. The Sonnet Special Edition pens are a writing instrument that makes putting experiences into words easier.

But I’ve always been a reader and a writer. Words are my thing.

I have been able to capture and share a decade’s worth of travel experiences and memories through words here on my blog. Writing has always come easier to me, and creating stories through words is one of my favorite activities.

And for me it always begins with a scribbled handwritten note somewhere.

travel writing

travel writing

Now that I travel for a living and I work in an industry that is always hungry for more and more content, I have discovered a unique problem.

Maybe it’s because I’m getting older or my brain is getting dumber (who knows) but I have found it a lot harder to strum up memories and stories out of the blue, especially on demand. I’m a deeply pensive person who often gets lost in thought, and I need time, notes and reflection to answer the big questions sincerely.

My most dreaded question “what’s your favorite place to travel?” Shivers. I hate that one. I usually can’t even remember what year it is, and even what country I’m in when I wake up in the morning. How am I supposed to pick a favorite place?

travel writing

travel writing

I have come to rely on my notes and journals from my adventures more and more when I reflect back on my travel experiences. As an avid traveler, my curiosity knows no bounds, and I love recording memories, sounds, smells and moments from my trips on paper.

Nowadays, I’m always on the lookout for more meaningful travel, experiences that can help me grow, that shape my life, and help satisfy my endless desire to discover the unknown.

And what place offers all of that in abundance? Antarctica.

travel writing

travel writing

I was lucky enough to spend a month down on the last continent, completely offline and able to truly be present and in the moment in one of the last pure wilderness on earth. What an opportunity!

Instead of my usual fast-paced notes and bullet journals, I took the chance to write for at least an hour every day, recording my memories and experience in it’s own dedicated blank journal. Decorating the pages with quotes from explorers like Shackleton and Scott, doodling penguins and tracing maps of our routes, I was able to connect with this travel experience in a way that I had only dreamed about before.

I would even bring my journal with me on land, and take the time to sit with enormous penguin colonies and take notes observing them.

Unforgettable travel experiences deserve to be put into words after all.

travel writing

travel writing

Using my time at sea to reflect and connect with the experience, I was able to easily place it in my memory as one of the best adventures of my lifetime, and obviously, my new favorite country.

The Sonnet Special Edition range helped me emotionally bond and connect with Antarctica by allowing me to put incredible moments into words, to capture those experiences on paper in a way that might have been impossible to describe otherwise.

After all, unforgettable once in a lifetime trips like to Antarctica deserve to be put into words!

What about you? Are you a paper and pen aficionado too? Do you enjoy writing about your trips too? Spill!

travel writing

travel writing

Many thanks to Parker Pens for inspiring me to capture my journeys on paper and for making trips like these happen. Like always, I’m keeping it real, all opinions are my own, like you could expect less from me!

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10 Comments on “Reflection, mindfulness and putting the world into words

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  1. Hi Liz. I am Kathy and loved your ex-pat article as I am one too. From Pensacola Florida and now in Auckland. Your disappointment when people say your US accent is strong is shared, but it’s 21 years for me. I hate that but I love the healthcare. Wishing you the best in Wanaka!

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