Now 6 hopeful friends have almost one year to get our plans sorted out – where to go, where to stay, how to get there. The biggest issue was of course the dough, so across these few months – one of us have to sell lots of tutu skirts online, some stay back for OTs, others just diligently work and save. Monthly shopping and expensive meals was cut down, in hopes to splurge the hard earned money at Montevarchi, Italy. All in all, because we have a date, and a cause. We split one person in charge of one particular location, so that we don’t have to be confused with so many details and bookings at one time.
No, we don’t have 10k cash in hand, we are just normal middle-class working executives. But in the next 2 months we booked the hostels, paid for train tickets online, another 2 months after that we paid for the connecting flights, booked all the tours and tickets to go up the Eiffel tower and by the time January 22nd is near, all we need to have is some money for meals, public transport and shopping expenses.
Ms. Zero & Mr. Hero
Then Ms. Zero met Mr. Hero. I wouldn’t say met, as it turns out, her knight in shining armor has always been under her nose all along. I’m trying not to sound like cliche fairytale, but that is exactly what happened. June 2011, it unraveled. Six months before the big trip, the initiator, the mastermind that started the ball rolling, dropped a big news – she is getting engaged and a wedding is due at the same time the big trip is suppose to happen. Ta-daa!
Ms. Zero was the one who brought us all together, uniting us for this trip, but now she has to make a difficult sacrifice. It is all that we would have wanted for each and every one of us, the day we meet that one guy that will win our hearts, having another individual to be a part of our lives, fulfilling the other half of our Deen, building a marriage.
When will the wedding take place? Why can’t she just follow the plans and go?
Wedding dates are set by both families, so no contest there. Being close knitted friends that we are, we CANNOT not be at her wedding, but at the same time we have this big thing planned a year ahead, and circumstances changed. You can’t be coming back exhausted from a 17 day Europe trip and get married while still recovering from jet lag the next day. Money was also a big issue, both for the wedding preparations and the trip. So obviously, they could only be one thing happening at one time.
It was such a bittersweet moment.
We were all happy for Ms. Zero and her newfound love, but we can’t help but be a tad bit disappointed that after all this planning, she won’t be joining us. After the ‘frustration drama’ passed, we took upon ourselves and continue on our planning and promised her we will still have a good time, come back safe and sound and we will be in our bridesmaids getup one week after that to celebrate the big day with her.
Me and the rest of us
I had a good thing going on this last 1-2 years, alhamdullilah. New job, new life and new responsibilities. And a few months before the trip, I was probably somewhere in cloud nine you might say. You just go with the flow and live life as it comes to you…
Ms. Foxxy on the other hand, is a very busy and dedicated career women, busy juggling time for work, herself, her mani-pedi sessions and dinner time with all of us. Ms. Nur (the only one of us who is married) found out she was pregnant with a baby boy a few months after the tickets were booked (another Ta-daa!) and when the trip is supposed to take place, baby boy would be about 6 months old.
Ms Ewinz works in the IT industry, she can seem like a quiet and shy person, but once you get to know her better, she’s actually fun to be with. She is a very organized person and being a seasoned traveler that she is, she has been to almost all continent of the world. Ms. Jacq, our new friend hailing from the City of Lions, Singapore is at a new starting point in her life, in the process of healing and forgetting, ready to start over and roam the streets of Paris and see more of the world.
Let the countdown begin
39 days before the trip. Wardrobe, thermal wear, winter boots, travel pouch checked. Itinerary all planned.
My planned route with Foxxy : Paris – Rome – Verona – Florence – Milan – Amsterdam – London
Nur : Paris – Munich – Florence – London
Ewinz & Jacq : Paris – Switzerland – Venice – Florence – Rome – Barcelona – Amsterdam – London
Each one of us wants a different experience, hence the split at different cities. We will be in Paris to experienced the Eiffel tower together, in Florence to shop and visit the Pisa together, and at the end of the leg, gather in London and experience snow there, if we’re lucky.
If you missed the first part: READ HERE.