Exactly 5 years ago I was landing in India. The first destination of my “Footprints in the Clouds” journey.
London – Mumbai: I remember that flight so well…
During the long journey, I was way too thrilled. Even tho was a red-eye flight, I couldn’t sleep or even rest. My mind was racing with so many ideas and possibilities. After all, I felt like I was given a white canvas and I could start something completely new.
The excitement about all the prospects and about what I was about to paint took over me and the adrenaline rushing my body and mind were exhilarating and I kept asking, “when people do drugs, is this what they feel? The euphoria? Glad travel is my drug!!!!
And so I did. I paint a completely new canvas from scratch.
Not because I was running away from something and definitely not trying to erase my “previous” life, which was basically 30 wonderful years… but I wanted something new.
I wanted to have that fresh start. No plans. No deeds. Not even commitments such as paying the phone bill. It felt great. It felt like real freedom.
The whole time I was on the road, kinda reminded me of the summer school holidays as a child. That sort of real freedom where every day will be different and that excites you more than actually not having school. The appetite of the unknown and not having a routine, and of course, knowing that no day will be the same. I’ve thrived on that.
3 years… that is how long it lasted. But it never ended really. And honestly? It never will.
In fact, it is still part of my life. I might not be on the road non-stop but if I look at this year alone, I spent most of the year abroad between Indonesia, Nepal, Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore, Italy, Iceland … and then spent some months between Portugal and London which I guess are home. So I spent more time traveling and being abroad than actually home – just how I love it.
But today, 5 years later since I landed in Mumbai where the adventure has officially started, I have been reflecting what it meant to me and how my life has changed.
Because it has. Completely. I am just not the same person.
The trip has transformed me.
In fact, has enhanced a part of me that has always been there… a bit hidden, a bit shyer, but was always part of who I am. Now, it reigns over every other aspect of my personality and my persona. And the best is that nothing and no one can take that away from me.
And the baggage I have accumulated does not end on collecting stamps on my different passports and have a new collection of over 100,000 pictures!!! It does not finish on all the people I connected with and the stunning monuments I have visited, or even the miracles of the mother nature I was blessed to experience.
It is so much more than that. I am talking about how it intensifies the core of my values.
I simply no longer give a shit.
I stand for what I believe no matter what.
I refuse to participate in the general hypocrisy.
I am no longer keeping an eye closed to most situations.
My morals cannot afford to follow or to be part of the herd.
I pay special attention at how history repeats itself. I am more aware than ever how “they” try to divide us. And my passion to wake people up has just increased as so has the focus on uniting and heal our beautiful Mother Earth.
But I am not going to lie to you. I can’t do that to you.
I cannot tell you it’s easy because it simply is not.
I cannot tell you how troubled I feel at times.
I cannot deny, that sometimes I wish my eyes and mind weren’t as open because it feels like a curse. And it is so lonely around here.
And it hurts to say this but the truth is that I can see why ignorance is a blessing.
I often feel out of place. I often feel like the alien in the room. And is rare when I can have a conversation about certain topics and feel like people actually speak the same language I do.
Traveling at the extent I did was one of the best things I ever have done. But if you think it was just a long holiday and then you come back to your old life, let me tell you, that is not going to happen.
Once you have a better understanding of how the world truly works… not from “that” book or “that”documentary, but from your own eyes and experiences… you will realize and learn the best about people, certain cultures and different societies… true, however, get ready to learn about the worst as well. And that will hurt and leave scars on your soul.
So I live through a mix of wonderful and terrible feelings and it can be so daunting at times.
I feel conflicted. Because I want to create a positive impact but I feel so powerless and frustrated because there’s so much “rubbish” drowning me.
Imagine you are trying to swim in the ocean… and even though the water looks calm, as soon as you get deeper, you realize there are so much rubbish and plastic and pollution and you can hardly swim anymore… and that’s exactly how I feel… surrounded by rubbish and people that don’t have the best intentions… And trying to deal with it isn’t easy.
Sorry, this post isn’t as positive, but it is important to share all sides of the story.
But if you asked me if I could go back in time if I would change anything?
My answer is, I wouldn’t.
I would still do every single action I did.
Because I am proud of who I was, who I am and who I became.