Nestless & Restless
Join the Journey
In her personal essay blog Nestless and Restless, enjoy Elizabeth’s wry observations on her journeys to explore and re-discover her two homelands and beyond.
Canada & the US
Southern France & Spain
Memory Lane, England
Season 1 – Prequel
The beginning of Nestless and Restless and a 15,000-mile road trip
In early 2017, My Lucky Half (MLH)* and I put our house on the market. It sold quickly, and we were nestless. We were also...
Season 1 – Episode 1
We’re Off! The oldest rocks, the freshest lobster, the sweetest capital city: Halifax to Gaspé, Quebec City, Ottawa
We left Halifax in May 2017, with MLH’s stuff taking up two thirds of the real estate in the car….. Close to 1,000 km later,...
Season 1 – Episode 2
Steam and stretch in Ottawa, Pharaohs in Toronto
Another rainy day in Ottawa was a perfect excuse to go to Le Nordik Spa, where we wandered from sauna to pool to steam room...
Season 1 – Episode 3
Lakes, rocks and trees: Western Ontario and The Prairies
It was hot and humid as we left Toronto for Oakville, 45 minutes to the West on Lake Ontario, which is lovely to look at...
Season 1 – Episode 4
Firsts and wonders: Calgary, Banff and The Rockies
In Calgary, we stayed in a modern Airbnb apartment in a ‘gentrified’ part of town which has a high number of Cantonese speakers, Ukrainians and...
Season 1 – Episode 5
Nature full force: The British Columbian side of The Rockies, Canada Day in Alberta, Pondering the Canadian identity
Most of our stay in The Rockies was in Golden, British Columbia. It is an unpretentious mill and railway town, and I would recommend it to...
Season 1 – Episode 6
The Wild West: Southern Alberta, The Calgary Stampede
One and a half hours South of Calgary is the UNESCO World Heritage site, Head Smashed-In Buffalo Jump. As we drove South the topography changed...
Season 1 – Episode 7
Smoking hot (literally) and MLH becomes Polish: British Columbia, The Okanagan Valley
Wildfires were burning in the BC interior the day we left, so we kept the radio on for road closures, but our journey through the...
Season 1 – Episode 8
Bohemian delights and a Canaversary: Vancouver Island, Salt Spring Island
In Vancouver we had a couple of days staying with another cousin and then set off for the ferry to Vancouver Island and Victoria. On...
Season 1 – Episode 9
Huffing and puffing around Vancouver
We visited Vancouver a few years ago and know it is a clean, pleasant, walking and bike-friendly city blessed with ocean on one side and...
Season 1 – Episode 10
Over the border to the United States: Washington State, Seattle, Oregon
At the US border, the only thing which interested the border guard was whether we had any fruits and vegetables with us. A few kilometres...
Season 1 – Episode 11
Giants human and natural, superlative washrooms: Northern California
California is big. We noticed scale in The Avenue of the Giants, the giant redwood forest, in the North of the state. The trees are...
Season 1 – Episode 12
Four things we didn’t know we didn’t know in San Francisco
“Sin City Gets its Just Reward” was one of the newspaper headlines in 1906, after an earthquake and fire destroyed much of the city. A...
Season 1 – Episode 13
Out of the fog and into the sun: Los Angeles, California
Coming out of the flat agricultural land of the Central Valley, through the hills and down into Los Angeles, you might feel you were in...
Season 1 – Episode 14
Gifts of the sun and Paul Getty, weird stuff: Santa Monica, Venice Beach, more LA
Nature supplied MLH’s birthday gift. An eclipse of the sun (partial, but still) in the morning and a glorious afternoon on sandy Santa Monica beach,...
Season 1 – Episode 15
Heat and the importance of pee colour: San Diego and Palm Springs
We were driving into an expanded and improved San Diego. We remembered a blah city with little character and with a lot of violence. In...
Season 1 – Episode 16
From blue to red and even hotter: Phoenix, Arizona
On the way to Arizona, MLH was thrilled to stop at the Date Farm Oasis in Thermal, California, and see where all those dates he...
Season 1 – Episode 17
Baptists, borders, broncos and Billy Bob’s: Texas
Here are my impressions of Texas, a state larger than Spain. El Paso is tucked into the Westernmost tip of Texas, just under the state...
Season 1 – Episode 18
Laissez les bons temps rouler through your senses: Louisiana
Yo Bro, where y’at? If Texas is your large, brash uncle with loud opinions who gets away with smoking a cigar in the living room...
Season 1 – Episode 19
Politics follows us up the Mississippi River Valley to the East Coast
As we headed over the vibrant green flatlands of the American South to Memphis, Tennessee, some of the United States’ undercurrent of social and political...
Season 1 – Episode 20
Wild horses and museums: North Carolina to Washington, DC
We made our way through Raleigh, North Carolina, to the coast of Virginia and Maryland. You can’t see much from the highway because they line...
Season 1 – Episode 21
Sketches of a city, and over the Falls to home: New York to Toronto
New York was the final Nestless and Restless stop, and a struggle to get there, two hours to get from the main highway over the...
Season 2 – Episode 1
A Very British Problem and a French One
Nestless and Restless Season 1 (2017) was a blast. We spent a very pleasant summer in Nova Scotia, Canada, but the shortening days at the...
Season 2 – Episode 2
Provence, Occitane and Le Tour des Toilettes
An elegant bastide, or country house (a part of it, anyway) was our home in Aix-en-Provence. We looked out onto the bucolic French countryside and...
Season 2 – Episode 3
Don’t read this if you are hungry or thirsty: Bordeaux and Aquitaine
It takes getting used to, the French custom of making time and space for life. We know 24-hour supermarkets, restaurants open all weekend. It is...
Season 2 – Episode 4
Basque Spain, a country within a country
You can eat some of the best fish and seafood in the world on the North West coast of Spain. First, it helps to know...
Season 2 – Episode 5
Linguistic stew, architectural wonders: Barcelona
Unlike Basque, Catalan is connected to other European languages. To me it sounded like French and Spanish combined, with some Italian thrown in. I speak...
Season 2 – Episode 6
Madrid should come with a health warning
When I hear a city neighbourhood described as ‘colourful’, I suspect that means it’s going to stimulate other senses, too. Noisy, grimy, smelly, perhaps. The...
Season 2 – Episode 7
Toledo and Valencia: lessons in history and geography
Every train we took in Spain left and arrived precisely on time. Buying the ticket wasn’t so efficient. Apparently, you need a special credit card...
Season 2 – Episode 8
Ruin raiders and caves and canines: Cartegena, Nerja and The Costa Del Sol
The fine highway South towards Cartegena was practically empty and the driving easy – fortunately because we were getting a lot of Spanish practice from...
Season 2 – Episode 9
The scent of jasmine blossom and dreams of home: Alhambra, Granada and Cordoba
At our Airbnb accommodations close to Granada’s centre, the cleaning lady greeted us clad in a pharmacist’s white coat and full make up, as if...
Season 2 – Episode 10
Curious fashion choices and matadors: Seville, our last stop
The bright, ripe oranges in green trees glistened in the rain and alternated with the grey-greens of olive orchards as we drove on the slow...
Season 3 – Episode 1
An anxious country, decay, “And are there crumpets still for tea?”
Welcome to Season 3 of Nestless and Restless, as MLH* and I leave Nova Scotia, Canada, to travel again after an enjoyable summer and fall...
Season 3 – Episode 2
Sweet nostalgia, cross-Atlantic connections, and the coin of the realm
Just outside the village of Sharnbrook, three generations of the Hurley family are still active in their grass-fed beef farm. They butcher their meat and...
Season 3 – Episode 3
Labelling up: maps for memory
I said in the beginning of Nestless and Restless 3 that these blogs were about different kinds of journeys. People talk about the aging experience...
Season 4 – Episode 1
Finding our place on a mega ship Welcome to Season 4 of Nestless and Restless, as MLH* and I try travelling by water instead of...
Season 4 – Episode 2
My Day at Sea and Colours of the Caribbean
We were supposed to dock in Jamaica early in the morning but during the evening entertainment in the theatre the first night, the jolly American...
Season 4 – Episode 3
Multi-hued and beautiful Colombia
We were sailing between the Islands of Cuba and The Dominican Republic towards Cartagena des Indies, Colombia. There were two semi-retired travel experts on board...
Season 4 – Episode 4
The Main Event: The Panama Canal
The Main Event was a partial transit of the Panama Canal the following morning. We found ourselves in a dull, muggy, grey dawn, squashed four-deep amid...
Season 4 – Episode 5
Meeting the locals in Costa Rica and Grand Cayman
We returned through the Caribbean locks of the Panama Canal in the dark, and docked the next day in Limon, Costa Rica. It’s an unremarkable, rather...
Season 4 – Episode 6
Behind the scenes in our floating world
Observation #10 The entertainers fall into two groups: young, talented musicians and dancers – from all over but a good number from former Eastern Block...