Met a Norwegian at my hostel that was on the same train - it was nice to have someone to sleep on.
I like friends who have independent minds because they tend to make you see problems from all angles.
Sometimes the least expected happens and you feel like you are home.
Paros was relaxing. Besides the fact I did find out I am not a skilled motor scooter driver.
But last night I drank wine with a German girl under a full moon. Who knew I could feel so relaxed having almost no plans.
Greek food is amazing - I’m going to miss it.
I have discovered that it is best to spend at least 3 nights where I go. Now a boy I met in Athens is coming to take me for dinner and then going to help me call the bus station to find out if indeed I can make it to Bulgaria tomorrow. I hadn’t originally planned on going of Sofia - but I met this amazing Turkish guy in Istanbul who I ended up spending a lot of time with. Well, he has friends in Sofia who he said would be happy to show me around if I go. So, why not?! Spontaneity is the purpose of zero plans - it seems meant to be.
Eva, the beautiful German I met in Paros also read my tarot cards - which were crazy enlightening. It basically said that I was at a place of new beginnings - and something is happening now that will change my life forever ( haha yes, traveling alone for two months can do that ).
I am spending everyday incredibly grateful for my opportunity of world and self discovery.
But I’m in Paros, an island in Greece. Almost completely in love.
So far I have been thinking about what to write. As with traveling and being on your own - I have a lot of time to consider things that happen, which also puts me on information overload.
So all I am going to tell you is what I know: So far I have gone over my budget - I have definitely spent more money than I had planned on. Kabop here is nothing like the delicious wonders of Berlin. Turkey shares a lot of similarities of home in the Middle East. There is a Moesque every few blocks. They are all huge and beautiful, and prayer call echoes over the hills of buildings.
Last night I hung out with a kiwi (who earlier pulled down his pants to show me a tattoo he woke up with in napal) and the Turkish waiter from a restaurant we ate at. He took us to the heart of local night life and told us stories about not wanting to stay in turkey. And I learned that everyone has different ways of making life meaningful.
The rows of seats face each other, I’m sure you can imagine waiting in an airport. In front of me, sit 8 woman with matching tops and pants, and what look like hijabs but are made from white lace and elastic. All of them are currently staring at me. Happy I could provide entertainment, ladies.
Also - due to Ramadan, I am not allowed to eat or drink in public. What makes flying even more fun? When you can’t drink from your own water bottle.
Getting on the plane will be a relief - you know that feeling you get just before you go down a big drop on a roller coaster? How you know it will be fun, but you wish it would happen because the anticipation might actually kill you.
I’m boarding. I don’t know what tonight will bring. But i intend for good people and beer. I also intend that I get to my hostel smoothly. I have done this before.
A thing is not necessarily true because a man dies for it.
So, today I deep cleaned my apartment - haven’t done that myself in a while (my maid went back home, how I miss her). Then ran some errands for my trip. I found a portable battery for my phone - its like a small cube that you charge and it can recharge your phone two full times. I feel like it might be a good idea - since i have already paid for internet access in Europe - so my phone being alive could be crucial. (People traveled before iPhones, it blows my mind).
The mall was crazy since Ramadan will start Sunday - so buying a small towel from LuLu’s ended up being a 40 minute excursion. At the Apple store, the employee tried to get me to admit i was famous, and two men were helped before me in the money exchange place - so i left. No, Lulu Exchange - you will no longer be allowed to handle my money - sexist pigs.
Again, since Ramadan will start Sunday - tonight will be the last weekend night to go out with music. Yes, during Ramadan bars still serve alcohol after sundown - they just aren’t allowed to play music. I can’t wait to experience the awkwardness of that. But a perk is shortened work hours - usually i work 730 - 4 but shortened to 830 - 230.
I am 100% aware I have lost whatever tumblr following I had before moving to the UAE - turns out that teaching does require my whole life. Pushing things like, keeping connected, out of my everyday.
But I have been reading a lot of traveler’s blogs recently and decided I am going to give it a shot. In 9 days, my summer vacation officially begins. Despite what some people may think - my decision to not return home this summer was a difficult one. Instead, I will be taking on Eastern Europe with a backpack and an inter rail pass.
I will be traveling alone. With the exception of meeting up with a few people along the way. This factor always seems the startle people (and i mean, don’t get me wrong - last summer before traveling alone for 5 weeks i did have dreams of not meeting anyone.) But I am addicted. Trips like this - I am willing to admit, i would rather be alone. The opportunities i opened myself up to were unforgettable. And to be honest, when I am on my death bed - I am not going to remember buckling my seat belt, but i will remember holding hands with a guy i had only just met, in the middle of 70,000 people watching Eminem perform in Belgium.
So here we go - i am starting now so i can share my apprehensions - to prove i am not super woman, i do have real fears. And i do procrastinate - something about traveling everywhere has really taken its toll on my ability to be prepared. Because i leave in 9 days (from Abu Dhabi to Istanbul) and my ‘to do’ list still consists of things like: ‘book return flight’ and ‘book hostel in Turkey’ But the universe always seems to turn in my favor - and i believe that with my ability to be flexible and remain calm everything will sort itself out - I am addicted to traveling - and the unknown excites me.
Who knows, I am probably writing this to myself.
—Turn It Around
Lucius - Turn It Around
Flagstaff will always be “home.”