There I am, stuck in a small seat on one of the planes of a low-cost airline. I love the rise of low-cost airlines all over the world: ten years ago I paid three times as much for this exact same flight, but it’s moments like this I wished I was short and could travel without luggage…
Ah well, just two hours and I’ll be in Spain!
I packed up everything. I managed to rent out my apartment for the summer so all my personal belongings ended up in a small number of boxes. Boxes that most of these belongings have seen many times before.
It felt weird though. Putting some clothes in a suitcase and getting on a plane feels a lot less permanent than having that same suitcase in your hand but now while looking around an empty apartment, placing a note on the dinner table for the tenant, knowing that this will be his home for the next few months and not yours…
Every time I leave I feel both very excited and very sad. Every time I wonder if this is the right thing to do. I have just spent two months in Holland and enjoyed myself quite well. It was great to catch up with family and with friends I’ve know for years. I traveled around Holland quite a bit, made some new friends, enjoyed the comforts of a (reasonably) well organized country and got to stay in my own house, surrounded by my own things. Even the weather was quite favorable this time. So why would I leave all of this behind? Is there something wrong with my life? No, I don’t think there is. Is there something wrong with Holland then? Well, no country is perfect, that I do know by now, but Holland definitely does have a lot going for it.
I think the reason I travel is simple: it’s the excitement of traveling or temporarily moving abroad and the challenges it will make you face. I love the thrill, even the fear of things going wrong and especially the joy of things working out: when you meet a few amazing people, see new things, taste new food and learn new life lessons.
I’m flying to Valencia today, a city on the east coast of Spain. From there I will travel south to a small coastal town called Moraira. Moraira is the place where my life abroad started. I was 17 when I first spent a summer working here and I eventually ended up staying for more than 4 years. So the beginning of this trip really isn’t new. It’s catching up with a past life. But, with a one way ticket and plans for the rest of summer that haven’t been finalized yet I have no idea where I will end up this time… In a way I kinda like the excitement of not knowing what will happen and I’m sure it will turn into an interesting new adventure one way or the other!