Photographer: Rachael Defoe
Model: Val Bong
Before embarking on my UK adventure and subsequent ‘Eastern Europe trip’, ‘travel’ always seemed like such a large quest and an intimidating adventure full of difficulties and unknowns. To be honest I was never keen on living out of my back pack (I’m still not very keen), away from familiar places and faces and from everyday comforts. But my willingness to try something new and to push pass initial hesitations has proved extremely rewarding.
Very similar to the way I feel about these photos taken by Rach from Suitcase home in Munich, a beautiful city in Germany (looking forward to posting more pictures soon). I was feeling extremely under the weather from a cold I had developed after being in rainy Hamburg. A runny nose, sore throat and a small acne breakout did not make me feel up for taking pictures, but Rach pushed and persisted (for those who know both of us, it’s really difficult for me to say no to Rach!) and I am so happy with the results. With all hesitations pushed aside I agreed to lie next to a running river bank, stick myself in a tree and let my hair run over twigs and branches.
Sometimes we miss out on some of the best experiences, simply because we allow our fears or hesitations get in the way. More and more, I realise, from chats with other travellers that the best experience are found in the most unexpected places. Following local Austrians to a hidden bar, staying a night in a Japanese monastery, being cared for by a Thai family in their village or watching a movie in a secret London location are my own stories and stories of friends who have pushed pass their doubts to experience something new, wonderful and exciting.
So let us not let the ordinary become our normality. Push forward to try new things, to go new places and to see the world with new eyes. You never know what you’ll find!
Congratulations to Kaitlin and Fiona for winning our TGI Friday’s £50 giveaway!
Enjoy your mate date on us on behalf of the wonderful people at TGI Fridays!
Valerie Bong – Founder & Content Executive
Val is an Arts/Commerce student currently based in Leeds, UK. As a photographer and documenter she loves celebrating the beauty of the world. With her love for capturing special moments she specialises in fashion, wedding, family and event photography.