Between Adventures & Routines

the Grand Finale style

My nor­mal life is like liv­ing on hol­i­days. And every­body needs hol­i­days from their nor­mal lives. So, maybe some­times I need hol­i­days from my hol­i­days? Or do I need nor­mal hol­i­days? Or a nor­mal life? Or no hol­i­days? No hol­i­days from hol­i­days or from life? Oh dear…

Last bike trip gave me a lot of thought, and changed many things. I would say more than ever, but then I would be look­ing down on the pre­vi­ous one – and all the oth­er ones – for the bare sake of recency. We remem­ber what we ate yes­ter­day, but we struggle to recall last week’s din­ner. Same applies here.

But on this post I’m going to focus on what last trip change, and leave the whole gen­er­al philo­sophy for some oth­er oppor­tun­ity.

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The Grand Finale

Leon post it very well: it was the loss of hope what cre­ated, and nour­ished, a vicious circle where a loss of motiv­a­tion and a lack of beds and shower also took part in. If for my part I have to choose one stage to be the most intense, Liguria was a free suf­fer­ing with little to learn or fore­tell from, but those three days from Firenze to Rome were bet­ter and worse at the same time. My motiv­a­tion was at that point already low enough not to give me ener­gies to face the post-trip dif­fi­culties – job and hous­ing and so on –, but my stub­born­ness was still high enough to fin­ish that trip at any cost. So I rushed 350km of moun­tains in three days, where I got hit by a boar, crossed a hunt­ing field where I saw a part­ridge bird fall­ing to the ground just aside of me, crashed against the scrubs two times, sneaked into a camp­ing site and slept between the cars, cried for help in a town I got stuck due to a thun­der­storm – Sandomierz style Grand Finales – and finally arrived to Rome hungry, dirty, miser­able, down­hearted, cry­ing for reas­ons I under­stand very well but I do not know how to explain.

And Rome, a city I love but doesn’t love me back. Eight years and a half ago, I was there in a school trip for three days; a trip I don’t even list on my trav­el­ling cur­riculum. Yet I was back this sum­mer, once more mis­treated: I couldn’t sleep in my room because of a sud­den orgy – yes, an orgy – my room-mates had, I got my sport-watch stolen, and I was forced to leave the city even earli­er than I ever wanted, due to the ineptitude of the train selling sys­tem.

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Still, not dis­cour­aged to try Rome a third time.

Yet again, from the com­fort of my today’s cosy room, I regard those three days as import­ant for myself as those last three days on the pre­vi­ous trip, those cata­stroph­ic last three days from Salomin to Kraków. I just now can­not ima­gine a dif­fer­ent trip, and I wouldn’t change a bit. Back then I was sure I would appre­ci­ate all of that some day in the near future, I nev­er doubt it was an import­ant deal, and now – from a safe dis­tance –, I love it, it’s funny to story-tell, and beau­ti­ful to think it over.

But I needed holidays from… what was it again?

That day at the thun­der­storm, I wrote to some­body I once wrote just a few months before that I was proudly not con­cerned of sta­bil­ity, that I real­ised what my words meant. I admit­ted need­ing a home. A warm place to come back later, as Leon said.

I came back to Kraków, and that’s what I tried hard to achieve. After, like, a bit more than three months “at someone else’s” (César and Maciek, I owe you each a whole pay-check!), I was crav­ing for my space to be alone and just think, just pro­cess everything that happened: just like last trip, the amount of mem­or­able moments to register was quite dis­pro­por­tion­ate and my brain was over­load­ing. And after all that time on my sav­ings, I was quite scared of ended up pen­ni­less and there­fore hungry. I needed, dam­as y caballer­os, a routine. Holidays from… oh dear that again.

But where is the equilibrium? Routines rotten us, but full time adventure burn us.

Now I’m a hard work­er at three jobs, two as a Spanish teach­er, and two days a week at the Arteteka, the place I did my EVS last year. My sched­ule is quite irreg­u­lar and chan­ging, but it’s organ­ised enough to make it. I take some time out of job to get everything pre­pared, and I have some free time for dan­cing, gym, writ­ing, and per­haps read­ing or gath­er­ing some new hob­bies I’ll some day talk about. And I’m also a ment­or of the new EVS volun­teers at STRIM (or their FB) – the organ­iz­a­tion that made my EVS pos­sible and now is turn­ing 15 years old – which I very much love. That’s my routine.

But hey, my Spanish teach­ing is quite excit­ing, always full of new activ­it­ies and dynam­ics to learn myself, and a lot of my own lan­guage I learn there. Arteteka is almost exclus­ively in Polish, which is just hard like hell. And the volun­teers are awe­some, all for­eign­ers dis­cov­er­ing Poland and life abroad. Oh, and of course, I’m liv­ing abroad! That’s my small cake of adven­ture for the time being.

But there’s some hunger for the big adventure.

If there was one thing I was already think­ing of in France, and just grew big­ger in Italy, was the idea that I need to get out­side of Europe. It’s not that I have seen everything here, but I’ve seen and heard of a lot of things. And some are start­ing to feel like all the same. Besides, I love this con­tin­ent far too much, and if I don’t get out­side of here soon I’ll end up being a stu­pid old big­ot – this applies to Leon as well. Also, I need to take Leon to a place were he can finally shut up about Germany.

Leon, for God’s sake, get your bloody travel pass­port. And some visas.

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