Venezuela, it could be the most misunderstood country in the world, but it’s taught me that I’m in no place to make that judgement. There are a few things that are true, the government is corrupt. There are dangerous areas. It can be near impossible to find information or book transport/accommodation outside of the country. It’s cheap to the point of being almost unfair to the local people.
But like every country in the world these factors don’t define it. What defines Venezuela, is its resilient, friendly and passionate people. It’s incredibly unique and diverse landscape. And the lesson that it teaches all that travel there. Venezuela is a master class in open mindedness. If you give it a chance, It will surprise you in some of the most profound and incomparable ways possible. Continue reading
Thinking about leaving fills me with a feeling of being caught so intensly between sadness and excitement that I remain firmly in the centre of the two, in a purgatory of experience. Lost In the false protection of avoidance, I fool myself into thinking that I am ready.
I’m leaving home once again, only this time It’s Ecuador, and not Colombia, or Australia that I’m leaving behind. over the last six months I’ve explored Ecuador’s unique and diverse landscape and culture. I experienced so much and so intensely that I could only ever appreciate it in retrospect.
Traveling is a whirlwind of discovery and goodbyes so much so that the goodbyes seem to become almost routine. We miss the point of them.
I’ve been staring at this Volcano for six months, driving back and forth through Ecuador, it’s not hard to spot. Cotopaxi is the second highest active volcano in the world, it towers majestically and threateningly over the Ecuadorian landscape, and for some reason I just felt drawn to it. I have had this inexplicable obsession with climbing to the summit. Of standing on top of Ecuador’s most famous volcano, and staring out into the land that since November has completely and utterly stolen my heart .
It’s hard to say what drives someone to want to conquer a mountain, is it pride, stubbornness, stupidity or something else? Why does it feel so innately primal to reach the highest point possible and stare at the world from above? For that short second all the pain and anguish of getting there disappears you’re high on more than the altitude. You’ve beaten the mountain and your reward is to peer for the briefest of moments at the beauty in this world. All the magnificence that surrounds you comes rushing towards your eyes, greater than the sum of their parts. You look, as the giant you stand on does at the world, and you see what it must be like to be something more than human, it is a transcendent experience. Continue reading
It is 12am and I am sitting in Bogotá international airport. My flight for Ecuador, Quito leaves in five hours. A flight that normally would take an hour and half but will take me fifteen hours via Panama City. A flight that was booked exactly twenty four hours ago, after a decision made twenty five hours ago and after a conversation had twenty five hours and fifteen minutes ago. I have only just moved in to my apartment in Bogotá two days ago, my Spanish lessons start tomorrow, I was settling in nicely making many new friends getting to know my house mates and now I am gone for ten days. So what the hell am I doing? The truth, I have no freaking idea I guess I’ll have ten days to figure it out…
Making new friends and missing the ones not with me, I have been having the time of my life sharing this human experience with others. One friend in particular made me so happy and proud for the people I have met and shared a connection in this world. Today is the launch of my friends new blog “Adventuring Home” (check it out here) a blog she has spent months preparing and a lifetime gathering her positive outlook on spirituality, life and well-being. I cannot wait to join the rest of the world in sharing in her message.
Almost completely settled in Bogotá and with my share apartment sorted out, I finally have a new home for the next five months, a base from which to explore Colombia. Bogotá is a very politically active city and there seems to be revolution in the air, with images of hammers and sickles, Che Guevaras, anarchists symbols, various other political slogans and “la paz de los pueblos” (peace for the people) graffitied on every second wall. Tent cities stand as a permanent protest outside the presidential palace and coffee shops are full of revolutionaries plotting and talking of change.
I have just returned to Bogota after a weekend in Medellín to celebrate Australia Day. I don’t necessarily believe in glorification of imaginary lines but I do appreciate the borderless sharing of experience that occurs when people agree to celebrate together; a big party is not too bad either. This would also be the last time I would see my friends I have been traveling with for so long. The beauty of Medellín and the fiestas that followed were a fitting end to our adventures together.
Since my last post I have been constantly moving, my life has been a flurry of dodgy bus rides, apartment searching, study organising and off-course Jungle trekking. I am finally in Bogota, and though exhausted in body my soul feels refreshed. My latest adventure started one morning in Cartagena when a group of us decided to drop everything and go straight to the Colombian Jungle in search of the illusive Ciudad Perdida (The Lost City).
I have been debating over writing this post down because to do so, I would have to admit to myself that I was not dreaming. That the last few days actually happened and that now I can only revisit them in memory. That familiar bittersweet feeling of experiencing something truly great, that is both inspiring and life changing, ahh the boat…
I am sore, I am tired, and I am beaten. The last few days have been rough traveling from Palenque, Mexico to now arriving in Panama City. The first leg of the journey was a 6am bus trip to the Guatemalan border, a short boat trip, and another long bus until we eventually arrived in Flores, Guatemala 10 hours later.
I am about to embark on a major adventure across oceans and continents i’m nervous, excited and i think i am ready. I’ll be travelling back to South America the continent i fell in love with earlier this year and this time I have the time and commitment to truly experience both it and the rest of the Americas. I’ll be starting in Mexico on Christmas day (I know that’s central) and sailing to Colombia where ill spend the first six months of the year living and studying in Bogota. After that the world, or perhaps in the more immediate future the Americas are my oyster.
I hope to share with anyone who cares to follow stories, philosophy and perhaps even a bit of poetry, as well as martial arts around the world. I’ve got many ideas and no real plan so it will be interesting to see how this all pans out. Anyway my names Peter and i hope you enjoy i’ll just finish with something i wrote earlier this year whilst traveling a revelation and a reminder to always be happy. This is my Journey!
We are all addicted to happiness of some kind. I’m Addicted to the pure kind, the one pure happiness that is infectious to all it touches. The denunciation of selfishness and the realisation that life is good.
happy travels, happy life, happy journey.