It took me a long time before making a final decision. Yes, I wanted to travel, grab my back pack and jump.
But for what reason? Why?
It was the first of March 2015 when I took the first step in this whole journey that I am telling you today, two years later, with many goals fulfilled and new plans on my mind.
That’s how it all started.
“In 20 years you will be more disappointed by the things you did not do than by the ones you did. So loose moorings, sail away from safe harbors, catch the winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover”. Mark Twain
I believe that today this sentence sums up the road I undertook, without a defined plan and with overly open options. I was sure that everything was going to go well in Australia, better than I thought. It was scary, and full of uncertainties, but inside of me I was sure that everything was going in the right direction.
Time ago I started to think that spending my whole life in the one corner of the world is too much and hence I went to discover other corners of this planet for a while.
“Nobody acquires a broad, healthy and generous vision if he stays in the same corner of the Earth for all his life, because to get a perspective we need to take distance”.
Although it still costs in farewells, the distance apart, living with the times upside down, waking up when my home country is going to sleep, speaking another language, being in unknown places, sharing spaces with people of other nationalities, having to be flexible, learning, making mistakes, trusting, being patient and to keep moving forward. It’s an unstable road, with many changes and great surprises, full of anecdotes. I will always remember all of them and always be missing all this too much.
The road can have many obstacles in the way; I may have made the wrong the decision, but to not write so as not to rub out a mistake, or not walk so as not to stumble, I may avoid some scrapes, I may remain intact, but I would miss telling incredible stories… There are things that we can count and measure, but for sure the best stories we take with us can never be numbered.
I said to myself, “I’m going to do this, even if I have to change my plans or destinations a thousand times”. I would have been lying to myself as the decision was already in my head. If I didn’t do it because I was fearing external opinions and comparisons, because I was scared of feeling wrong, I would have been conforming. I would have been spending time, not living it. And afterwards I would have also regretted not having taken advantage of that moment when I could go.
You never know where the road takes you, it might take a long way, maybe a short one. Maybe it was just all about getting rid of the doubt; maybe it was about finding new places, discover new possibilities, or just about finding a new version of myself. I was going to look for inspiration. As they say, sometimes it’s necessary to get lost to meet ourselves again. Discovering new lands means losing sight of the shore for a while…
I didn’t want to escape for any reason. Running to the other side of the planet wasn’t going to make my life easier and I would have always wanted to go back home. No matter how much we run, we carry ourselves with us. To go away means to leave a lot behind, the whole life that we created; friends, family, affections, and above all, to dare to face ourselves, because however far we are, we have to learn to live with the ‘self’ we have inside. It’s about letting out all what we seek and start creating who we want to be.
I wanted to find my reason for wanting to explore new things. Maybe, as they say, I got infected by the traveller’s bug. I wanted to find the way to be happy at home and stop yearning for something else. It was like something did not fit, like I wasn’t giving my best. Sometimes we feel that we are losing the balance or the focus. I could feel that I wasn’t myself and I wanted to leave with a goal in mind, without giving detailed explanations such as “Why?”, “For what?”, “From what are you escaping?”, “Where?”, “For how long?”. For a while I fluttered in the same, but the idea of leaving was still spinning in my head. I feared disappointing the others and so, in the meantime, I was just disappointing myself.
I started with the idea of doing a postgraduate master, something important. I could not go away to do nothing meaningful when my 30’s were just right around the corner. But I lacked money, I had no English, I just spoke basic Italian, I lacked Photoshop, I had no computer skills, etc. etc. Something is always missing and I will never have the perfect equation of a good bank account and a strong knowledge of all languages. If I would have waited to have all these requirements, for sure I would have been too old, would have lost the desire to leave and I would have probably been busy doing different things.
I do not know why, Australia was always there, coming and going. I was looking for a plan B but there it was again. Then I thought, just try! The possibilities were all there, everything was moving into the right place or maybe I had already started little by little to say goodbye so that everything was fitting in its rightful place. I happily left my whole life in Argentina. I had to trust my luck, or help her, as everyone says.
With my life tight in a suitcase, with all my fears and doubts, I could hear loud voices calling for the embarkment. I was feeling the adrenaline of trying new things and a thousand of ideas were fluttering in my head. Here I was, exactly on the other side of the world, in a distant continent of Oceania. When I saw the map, I had never thought I would have gone there some day and even less likely that I would have returned there and that it would have been my house for a while.
These kind of trips are usually very difficult to plan, step by step, you never know what’s happening the day after or where your luck will take you. I arrived this way, without any plan, letting myself go, which is better, because everything that happens unexpectedly surprises you at every moment.
Even if I had to face many fears, I felt I was doing the right thing, that I was where I was supposed to be and that everything would have turned out well. I was happily lost. Everything that lied ahead was going to be an adventure, an unforgettable stage to grow and live. I am grateful to have thought about that, even though it took me a long transition time, as I have already mentioned. I simply gave myself the opportunity to try.
And my story will do its justice, because the coin has already been tossed and is spinning in the air … This is how it feels: it is like swimming in the opposite direction, but at the end we always find a new heaven.
Thanks for having pushed me, thanks for the enormous affection you showed me, thanks to those who encouraged me, to those who asked me “Why?” and “What for?”. Thanks to those who repeated a thousand times how much they would have missed me! Thank you very much! I keep all of you inside my heart!!!!
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