Dear followers and occasional readers of this blog,
yes, ’tis me, in – well, not the flesh per se, but in my full internet form, back after two years of not having posted anything At. All.
Anyone who enjoyed reading this blog (if you even remember anything, because let’s be real, it’s been two years), might be interested to know that, while I’m not picking up Down The Rocky Road again, I have started a new project called Antarctichokes. On there, I will discuss the things closest to my heart – books and bookshops, travel, Ernest Shackleton and other stubborn Polar Explorers that have captured my heart, hazelnut-flavoured Polish vodka, Harry Potter, musical theatre, and more books. It’s exciting and new, and I hope you’ll love it as much as I do!
A lot has changed for me in the last couple of years, and having recently moved to Krakow, Poland, for a semester abroad, I decided it was time to start something new.
I have loved running this blog, but I feel like I have genuinely outgrown it. It’ll remain online, of course, in case you ever need a recipe for Churros that includes palm-sized, 3rd-degree burns on your forearm. But other than that, this is good-bye, and, as I hope, hello on a new page!
Our last day. I was wearing my favourite dress today, and it’s now damp and rumpled; a bit like we are. A bit tired and a bit ready to go home, and a bit sad-looking because we’re not ready to say good-bye. Not to those red doubledecker buses, not to the tea, not to the bookshops. Not to each other.
But, my friend, I have loved being on an adventure with you, loved it so much I wished it would never end. But I think you’re fast asleep, and it’s only another three minutes until tomorrow, and this diary is all that’s left of today. A bunch of words that fail to describe a feeling. Like trying to catch a beam of sunlight.
A hundert and seventy-eight days ago I was sitting in a similar spot at the airport in LA, thinking to myself, „What on earth am I doing here?!“ Honduras was such a foreign concept, and now that it was getting real and close and scary I doubted I would ever get to like it. My mind was set on the stereo type I had of the Latinos, greasy womanizers that valued their nails more than character, unfaithful bastards, never on time, liars… not all of them, obviously, but, like, generally speaking. Why didn‘t I just go to the UK where everyone looked like Harry Potter or David Tennant and spoke with a pretty british accent?
Needless to say that stereo types are rarely what you encounter upon visiting a new country.
I was so sure those six months would trickle by in painful slow motion, and now I am sitting here, a hundert and seventy-eight days later, wondering where all these days have gone! Has it really been so long? I don‘t even know what to feel. It‘s a little bit like breaking up with somebody while you still love them. I think my heart is a little bit broken by it. But I‘m on my way to New Zealand and I know that this is a good thing, because five years ago I felt the same way about leaving from there. Six months ago I would have preferred travelling there rather than to Honduras. And now it‘s just all very confusing because I‘m not so sure where I belong any more. They say that home lies where the heart is. I left my heart in Switzerland, that‘s why in the end I had my doubts about leaving. Then I started working in Chiminike and my heart was sold. All I ever want is to belong and as soon as I do I don‘t want to leave any more, but I belong in so many places, where will I ever stay?
Physically speaking my heart is always in my chest. So, maybe, the trick is to see things not too metaphorically and much more the way they actually are. My heart is where I am, it is keeping me alive and therefore, I will always be able to feel at home. Maybe that‘s the real problem about leaving. I always feel comfortable very fast and I‘m worried the last place might lose the meaning it once had to me. There is a quote that says:
„You get a strange feeling when you‘re about to leave a place. Like you‘ll not only miss the people you love but you‘ll miss the person you are now at this time and place because you‘ll never be this way again.“
So many feelings. I feel sad because I‘m losing a life, I feel blessed to have met those people, I feel a little excited about seeing old friends again, I feel scared and lonely and okay and very much not okay… I want to frame those memories, Roberto in his jammies at the airport at six in the morning, the children that came to the museum, the day we went to Pulhapanzak and the others drew stuff on my face because I was hungover and fast asleep, the parties at Jorge‘s house, all the dancing or, as I like to call it, the sex on the dance floor (!)… Did I hug everybody as much and as often as I could? Soon I‘ll be sitting in front of a camara and wishing I‘d have one last hug left… and another one after that. But that‘s the wonderful thing about having a heart that beats. We can always find love. It doesn‘t mean that what we once loved doesn‘t matter any more or that we don‘t love it any longer; it‘s just that our lives are always and constantly in motion. Life always goes onwards whether we allow it to or not. Clinging on to the past doesn‘t mean we stay there. It simply means we don‘t enjoy the adventures life has to offer.
Well, this blog entry has turned out to be different from what I expected it to be, but that‘s alright. I‘m going to be fine in a day or two, but just for now I think it‘s okay not to be. I‘ve just watched an inspiring video-blog by Carrie Hope Fletcher on that matter that completely supports my point (watch the video here).
Here is what I know: I will always return. No matter how much time passes and where I end up being, I will always go back to the places I love. As long as there‘s people worth returning to, I will always do so.