domingo, 11 de abril de 2010

FifTeen mOntHs... and a lifeTime

At exactly 15 months (today) i left my home for this journey (by that time, a life journey, now... I think a first one)... and i decided to write a letter.

I thought a lot about this letter.

I somehow wrote it in my mind in those incredible productive and lucid moments before you sleep... tight in your bed, feeling the warmness of rest surrounding you. And now everything looks unordered in my head, so i will just write it down as it comes: I thought about you, all of you. I mostly tried to think of the very best of this trip -you know things to write about on a day like today-, and even when i can not even believe ive been in so many paradises, and explored so incredible places, situations and some times, "experiences", i could only think about you, the people. All of you, and every single one of you are by far the very best of this journey.

So i decided to make this blog entry as a letter (that i will email to most of you whose contacts I have), talking to you, about you... i don’t use names nor nicknames (yes, some of you know how i like to call you special names... not really your birth names... ) but situations... hoping that and some -most- of you will -might- recognize you there, might remember that aswell.

Some of you ive meet for a lifetime -well, even a week can be such a long time while travelling-, some of you just crossed paths for one day, one coffee, one dinner, one bus ride, or one museum visit (ay! the nice Uffizi!), but somehow you made an impression, i do remember you, and i do include you in this bunch of people that made my World during this time. The best of my trip was to share with you, like the first time i tried to eat with my hands (indian style) on public, walking among ruins in Hampi, playfully with the horn of gondor fellowship, a walk in the "jungle" in the middle of delhi and the fear of the first cow coming out of the bushes, my amateur hindi lessons in Jaipur, in Delhi and in Dharamsala... just asking and trying to remember and copying the characters on my journal, a lost afternoon shopping with the israeli diamond dealers... making a video of everyone walking by, or meeting at a random guesthouse... in india, in thailand, in vietnam, in china, everywhere, anywhere... Some of you i even met for less time, like waiting for a friend in Mumbai and ended up invited to a playing at the Blue Frog, or waiting at a line to buy some train ticket and ended up talking about trips, yoga and the amazing little things that made our eyes open wider... ay sharing the simple life in Goa beaches or at the mountains in thailand... or a simple talk in Hampi and a photo shot wearing a saree :D, or taking the sun in sumatera, i ended up tasting an amazing chilean ceviche with some even more amazing girls!... or just talking in portunhol in the venezuelan Caribbean beaches... waiting to see the dolphins.

But with some of you i shared a lifetime, and a life experience... sometimes a life threatening experience... like riding a motobike for the very first time in the mountains of thailand, trying to remember to stay left... left!!... or hikking to a volcano on a path everybody said not to go without a guide to, or worse, exploring an un-explored glacial, down to a river during a whole day, with licking snow and ice, and 2 meter holes... on a crazy but amazing trekk in the himalayas!, and a million less threatening-but unique- ones , like the never ending motobike rides through cities, parks, roads, mountains and even in the island inside of a lake inside of an island, back in Sumatera. The first and extremely positive experiences hitchhiking in Venezuela and Colombia, to the beach, to the Andes, to towns and to the cities. Or crossing the city of Cairo, heading to the Giza pyramids with extremely loud music and 20 USD in our pockets :D. Having both mandarin and swimming classes -at the same time- in Malaysia, while searching for something to eat at the island... so many unique moments. And taking stupid -by far the best- pictures, making faces...

With some of you i learned to live with, to share 24/7, and you have seen me laughing (most of the time i am glad to say), thinking, worrying and even crying!. I can not count the good times, as they are the main moments of this trip, laughing, sharing and creating a friendship that would never be the same under any other circumstances... but some moments -not necessarily the best ones- are printed in my memory... like the hug and the lifting, making me feel like a tiny child, under the snow storm in Amsterdam, when i was tired of fighting visas and flights, or like the playing in the sand at the beach outside Padang, my last day on the island, finding the secret garden in Borneo, spending one day at Bangkok airport preparing our last vietnamese coffee with our own coffee machines, my first parisinan night tour, asking and walking and falling in love with a city that will stay with me for ever, my one year on the road anniversary French dinner... priceless!, or following the prosboscid monkeys with binoculars and a camera... and making fun of mother nature as we saw them, making a video about holy shit (literally) in mandarin and spanish in the streets of jaisalmer... and of course, riding a camel for two days and fighting why papaya was by far the best of them. Or a simple Mexican party in Bangkok... dancing like crazy (literally) and sweating while trying the spicier enchiladas of my life!, or eating at the streets of non-touristic bangkok... at the other side of the river, and making a stupid video of bugs for supper... sharing backpacking secrets and must do's.

The bus rides, and lazy guesthouse days learning hindi, hebrew, thai, malay, bahasa indonesia, mandarin and russian, the long hours at airports, the lazy nights talking with beers, coffee or tea cups, or walking with no destination whatsoever… the crazy party nights all around the world –in which Ive met more than just a few of you!), dancing –or trying to-, drinking and laughing louder than usual, the almost sick days (yes, still now, i only got one cold in Europe... and one dehydration day in malaysia... still... almost-never-sick :D) and the never ending visa-embassy-burocracy days (with some of you wearing “embassy pants”). The white lie of a fake marriage to be able to travel legally in some areas, or our crazy "teacher´s" meeting at Dalian’s office, to discuss... i never really knew what... and laoshi day... flowers, cards, gifts and thousands of smile round pale faces, as cute as you could imagine... it hurted to leave that. It hurt every single time, in every single place...

For everyday camping anywhere, every rooftop meeting, every city walk, every lazy days and afternoon –some really, not lazy at all!- exploring cities walking or on the back of a motobike... trying not to hit a rickshaw (tuctuc) or a cow, or somebody else... or at boats… by far my favourite city-exploring transportation :D, every morning arepas, paranthas, noodlesw with –or and- soy milk, and peanut butter sandwiches, every long talks during breakfast... every good morning with a smile that last the whole day... every laugh attack due to my expressive way of talking or my graphic displays to explain some differences about latin american (of course with bolivian tone) and more "western" or "eastern" cultures... every sunset at the beach at the mediterranean, pacific, atlantic, indian, caribbean, chinese... how many oceans and seas are there??, every mountain trekking, every volcano, every cable, every high peak conquered, every lake, every sea, beach, rocky cliff, every city explored, town, beer brand... every local meal, and every dinner and breakfast cooked-find and chose together has meant a lot to me, to this day, to this trip. For every plane, bus, boat, train, truck, car, motobike and even bicycle ride shared... for every monument, museum, square, palace, castle, street and world wonder... for every movie watched on lazy days or book shared during these trips, for the sun block, the shampoo, the soap, the tooth paste, repellent and the small food items that became "communal" when we travel together –and made our long rides much more appealing)... and every day sharing your houses, your time, your families, your pets, your friends, your hobbies, your works... for every single talk, chat, deep or shallow... long or short...


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Gente que me visita!!!