Miles from Budapest…

It’s the beginning of another travel day for me and a week since I flew out of Boston. I’ve already been to two cities and I’m currently headed a third and the first country I’ve not been to. So far, the biggest thing I’ve had to remember how to do is speak simple English. English is becoming a common traveling language but for so many people, it’s a second language. Which means I get to use simpler words while speaking more slowly.

The other day I was looking at the hostels I’m staying in along the way and realized that one of them is listed as “Property no longer available” on Hostelworld (the site I’ve been using to find/book all of my hostels). I googled it and did find the property but not having it Hostelworld bothered me. So I had a decision to make. I sent out a quick email to address provided me and hoped that they’d get back to me within the day. They didn’t so I decided to make some changes. Yesterday morning I spent reworking my itinerary so that it would work well and fit with my calendar and Eurail pass. And I made it work! Somehow. There were some moments where panic was slowly reaching its way up my throat, threatening to constrict me. It really had to do with having to change so much and the worry that I’ll make a mistake. Which brought up the concern that maybe I’ve bitten off way to much by taking four months and maybe I should have taken several shorter trips. All in good time, some frantic writing to try and get the panic out of my fingers, and I became more calm and reassured about the trip.

Copenhagen: I had a good trip across the Atlantic and easily got through customs to find my bag and an avocado sandwich from Joe & the Juice (so good!). I took the metro from the airport to the center of Copenhagen then walked towards my hostel. The nice thing about having a phone that still works here is having maps which makes finding my way much easier. In the evening, I met with a friend from when I was at Vejlefjordskolen and we walked around Copenhagen. I ended up getting a blister or two but it was good to catch up. The next day, I headed to Malmö, Sweden to meet with another friend from my grade school days. She came to Sweden to go to school and is currently still living there, trying to learn Swedish. She was kind enough to invite me to her apartment where her boyfriend cooked dinner and showed me pictures from their recent trip up to Northern Sweden to hike. After dinner, we drove over to Lund, where the university they both attended is located and we walked around for a bit. The next day, I spent walking around Copenhagen. I stopped by the Little Mermaid, walked by the palace, to where some river boat tours leave that I had seen on my last trip to Copenhagen. I wandered into one of the center squares, got another sandwich from Joe & the Juice and people watched. I worked my way to the Copenhagen Central station to activate my Eurail pass and make reservations for the next mornings trains and timed myself getting to my hostel. I left early the next morning and made it just in time to the train. I met several people on the train and we had some good conversations about traveling and where we were headed next.

Prague: Ah, Prague. In high school on bell tour, we went to Prague so my first day, I walked towards the St. Charles Bridge because I remember wanting to spend time on the other side of it, close to the castle. I had forgotten how hilly Prague is! So many hills! I walked up towards the Prague Palace to get a fabulous view of the city and to get a breeze. After finding food, I walked towards the older part of town and got this treat that is basically a breaded cone with filling. I got chocolate and ice cream in mine and it was so good!! Once I got back to my hostel, I worked on writing about the previous few days and started talking with some of the people around me. Eventually one of the guys I met, Jonah, came upstairs with a couple other guys and they started playing a card game and after a bit, I joined in and had so much fun! The next morning, I reworked my itinerary and eventually walked down into the city to get lunch, salad with goat cheese (it was fantastic!) then cake and coffee from a small café I had found the day before. I spent the evening packing up my area and making sure I was ready for leaving today.

Now I’m on a train to Budapest…Wahoo!

I’ll See You On The Other Side

There are many satisfying things in the world. Slow dances, warm rains, flowers, new chap stick. I’ve always been satisfied by travel and it’s no secret. I’ve been across the Atlantic several times on different journies and come back more than satisfied. The only unsatisfing piece? Not knowing when I’ll go back again.  For some, travel is exhausting. The lines, the waiting, the uncertainty, the letting go, trusting our lives into the hands of others.  And it is tiring. I love it. I love that I can fall asleep almost anywhere. I love fitting my life for however long into a bag. I love the chance to move, to see, to do, to meet, to change my perceptions. And yes, as I sit here in the airport, tears threaten to cloud my eyes, making pools in tear ducts, waiting for a chance to break the surface. But that’s a part of any journey. Leaving behind someone that was for someone new and improved. Someone who see’s the world in a new way. If you’ve ever heard of the musical Hamilton, there is a song. Hamilton is talking with Burr right after Hamilton’s wedding. They’re talking about women and the war and they tell each other they’ll see each other on the other side of the war. I’m off to fight, not with a gun, but with courage and strength, patience and endurance. And while I know I’ll be taking you with me, I won’t get to see you or my home till we reach the other side. So, dears, I’ll see you on the other side.