Who were your teen idols?

Who were your teen idols?

Today over on Travel Live Learn Facebook we’ve been discussing all things 80s and 90s (yep kids, that’s when I was growing up in sunny Queensland, Australia – good times were had by all…er, most.

What did you love ‘back in the day’? So far we’ve had comments on Edward Furlong, Leo DiCaprio (I never did grow out of that one), Roxette, and The Backstreet Boys (perhaps known as ‘One Direction’, today), Whitney, Press GangDirty Dancing, Pretty Woman… many great memories.

It’s funny how indulging in a little sentimentality every now and then – as dorky as it may be – can make you happy. At Christmas (2012) I had the good fortune of being in London and therefore was able to head along to the O2 for a show paying tribute to artists who were signed to the hugely successful Stock Aitken Waterman label.

Pretty much anyone who meant anything in the world of pop was signed to these guys, and this show featured the sounds and voices of some of my very favourite 80s acts, including Sinitta, Banarama (amazing!), Rick Astley and Kylie & Jason. Most of the performers made jokes about how cheesy their songs were, but you know what, no one cared. We were all rocking along like we were 10 again – excited as school-kids listening to treasured cassettes over and over.

My other favourite memory is also London-based; the Darren Hayes concert of New Year’s Eve 2009 where he played just about every Savage Garden song – it was like being 18 in 1997 again – what a sweet feeling to have recaptured those old emotions, even if only for a few hours.

There’s nothing like a little nostalgia to make the heart sparkle. I know the things I used to love as a kid, I truly loved – probably always will (X-Files!). While you may think I’m a total geek for what I’ve mentioned here, surely there’s something or someone from ‘your time’ you remember fondly?

Join the conversation, tweet @sarahblinco or find us on Facebook. And I’d love to hear from you – drop me a note in the comments!


Feature image by Ollvier Laurent, Flickr creative commons
Bye beautiful British Columbia

Bye beautiful British Columbia

British Columbia Gastown Vancouver travellivelearn.comVancouver, you’re my third home. It’s been brilliant living and working in the city for a couple of months.

I’ve loved it here ever since my first visit in 2000. At that time I was merely in pursuit of old X-Files’ filming locations (“nerd”), but my mad film obsessions lead me to one of the prettiest, easy-going, outdoorsy and downright beautiful places on the planet.

Bye beautiful British Columbia… 

We stayed in Gastown (pictured) this time around. Sure, this historical part of town is renowned – one, for being a waterfront tourist mecca, but two, for hosting a ‘wide variety’ of people – from the wealthy design set to the ‘residentially challenged’ as they say here.

Across my three visits I’ve never ever had a problem in Vancouver, even in the so-called ‘dodgy’ area. I’m enamoured of the city and its water views across to the northern section, and the reciprocal views from North Vancouver to the downtown area.

Tom Cochrane Life is a Highway lyrics always spring to mind when I look across from Lonesdale Quay as sun sets across the cityscape. There’s nothing more lovely than strolling through Gastown in the evening as it is lit up by fairy-light encrusted trees and old Parisian style street lamps.

beautiful British Columbia Vancouver travellivelearn.com

Cycling around stunning Stanley Park, fish ‘n chips at Deep Cove, snowboarding down Grouse Mountain overlooking the vast city, watching productions set up for a day’s filming then disappear, and getting lost amongst Capilano’s Christmas Canyon light display – it’s all magical to me, and I can attest first-hand to the many reasons this city is consistently voted one of the most liveable, and naturally gorgeous, in the world.

I’ve written several travel pieces on the region, focusing on the plethora of activities, sights and attractions… in fact it’s all happening in Vancouver! This time around however, I’d like to touch on Vancouver’s vibe, its people – they’re cool, creative, interesting, friendly and welcoming. We had the pleasure of meeting several new friends in Vancouver this year – some of the most interesting, inspired people I’ve met in a long time – you know who you are!

Then there’s the dog factor. They’re everywhere, and Vancouverites love ‘em, therefore I love Vancouverites. Dogs and coffee… it’s a little like dogs ‘n beer going hand-in-hand in London pubs.

Finally, the really noticeable nicety about Vancouver? The air! It’s clean, crisp, fresh… beautiful British Columbia (BC) is actually pretty ‘green’. They’ve had electric buses on the streets for a long time, even beyond when I was first here. It’s noticeable. Clear skin and fresh air in a busy city. Two thumbs up to everyone contributing to that, many cities should be paying attention.

I hope to see you again soon, Vancouver, and BC. I’m inspired by your beauty and the fact that no matter how much time I spend I can never seem to get enough of your amazing offerings. So, I’ll just have to head back again one day x

We adore Canada and British Columbia and believe it’s one of the most beautiful places in the world.

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Brief pause: Beautiful British Columbia and Vancouver

Brief pause: Beautiful British Columbia and Vancouver

Can you believe it? Today I actually rode a bike – for the first time in probably ten or more years. Not only did I ride a bike, but I rode it all around Stanley Park! If you’re unsure as to why this is such a big deal, you obviously don’t know how generally uncoordinated I am.

It’s a completely gorgeous day in Vancouver and about time I got ‘back on the bike’, so to speak. We’ve ended up in B.C. for a stay – an attempt to catch our breath, catch up with some writing and blogging, and explore this beautiful (and favourite) part of the world.

British Columbia Grouse Mountain Vancouver travellivelearn.com

Beautiful British Columbia and Vancouver

Vancouver is as awesome as I remember it. We’ve found a little spot in Gastown to live, within walking distance to the waterfront, cafes, fabulous Asian supermarkets, parks, pubs…

Of course, hanging out here does remind us of how very lucky we are. There are many ‘residentially challenged’ people (as our new mate Edward says) in the area, but with that said, I’ve not once in my three visits here felt unsafe. Indeed every person in the precinct has their own story to tell. As for me, I’ve always wanted to spend an extended period of time in Vancouver and I’m so fortunate to get my wish.

We’ve even met some cool people – interesting and creative; plus there’s a cute dog in the crew named Lydia!

British Columbia Grouse Mountain Vancouver travellivelearn.com

Stanley Park was on the ‘to do’ list for our first brilliant sunny day − and what a gorgeous area it is. The park is actually 10 per cent larger than New York’s Central Park and riding around the perimeter we encountered beautiful forest areas, beaches, a lighthouse, stunning coastal views and mountain scenes across the water to North Vancouver and beyond. Can’t wait until it snows because the only view better than the one we had today is that where the mountains are capped in white!

Am pleased I didn’t fall today. Or hit any small children or dogs. What crazy adventures will I come up with next? ;-)

We do have Whistler, Buntzen Lake, Vancouver Island and Deep Cove on the ‘to do’ list – if you have any other ideas please list in the comments, much appreciated.


If you’re interested in more stories from this divine part of the world, you might also enjoy:

The X-Files and Vancouver travel journal

Heaven is Harrison Hot Springs

Coffee & cocktails in Gastown

Wonderful Whistler adventures

Discover Victoria and Vancouver Island

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