never really told
I am in my new house, in my mom’s new place, for the moment. I’ve been living with her the past 3 months, in Rome, so that I could work and earn my money to spend in following my dreams. I am using them for the experience of a magical yoga teacher training with a bunch of goddesses in Costa Rica, and then for the experience of the most amazing festival in the whole world: Envision.
After that I will be having nothing left, but that’s life, and I decided a long while ago that I was more keen in spending my belongings for things I loved now instead of keeping them safe in a bank account hoping to use them one day.
And while I’m here in this situation, waiting patiantly for my new adventure to begin, I am looking through old photos, the pics that captured the most transforming moments of my life until now. The moments of my solo travels, the moments of moving through countries and continents with only a small and extremely heavy backpack, the moments of meeting new people every day, the moments of going where my feet were leading me. The moments of human tribe, beaches and palm trees, cacao ceremonies and Patwa dialect in the streets.
I never really told the world about you! About you, my travel experiences in Costa Rica, Nicaragua and Panama. I wrote a lot of articles, thoughts, poetry and stories, but not really… about the whole eperience. It was something that changed my life, my perception of life, and myself completely, so sharing it is the minimum I can do.
The time has come.
Costa Rica Roundtrip & Nicaragua Shores
I left for the first time in my life to visit a country I had heard about only on the web. The country which then became my home. I was so young, thinking about it now, 19 years old fresh, and so resolute to go to Costa Rica. Alone. I still cannot track back where this crazy desire to go in a place I did know nothing about came from. Probably from some yoga warriors and hippie nomads I followed on instagram, but I never in my life experienced something like that before – being absolutely sure that I had to go exactly in that place. It’s a strange pulling, a quiet calling you hear pulsing louder and louder and that you cannot, even if you wanted to, ignore. I’m sure you’ve felt it too, at some point. My parents were terrified, their little girl, in a machist country where it’s the norm to walk in the streets with machetes, on her own? It was straight a no. But my mind was so set on that goal that in the end, I departed. With one condition: travel with a girl my age I met on facebook. We wanted to go in the same permaculture farm, so I figured out saying I would stick to her the whole time would be an extra chance for them to agree (and it worked).
I left. The whole journey, we really did stick together! Another 28-years old mexican girl added herself to the gang, and there we were, surfing the coaslines of the Pacific, living in hammocks, visiting yoga farms, spending 7 hours a day in dirty buses eating fried chicken and plantain chips, visiting winter-cold cloud forests, seeing sloths and being woken up by howler monkeys in the mornings.
That was when I began to live. I can still feel the shift of my perception of living after this first trip to the jungles of the Caribbean. I clearly see a line dividing my life before, and after the trip. It’s like what came before were only some unclear, foggy and blurry memories where I was, but at the same time, was not.
having my second tattoo in a kitchen of a hostel we were staying near the cloud forest in the cold mountains in the middle of Costa, on a wooden table, after designing together with the tattoer the art I was going to put on my flesh, and I clearly remember how that guy turned out to be (unknowingly) a tattoer work-in-progress who messed up the whole design! Which I love though until today.
passing the border Costa Rica-Nicaragua… without knowing it was Nica’s day of Indipendence. The whole country was in party-mode. But not a usual party-mode, the western one is nothing compared to the latino one, believe me. As soon as we crossed the border – cars, vans, giant buses filled up the streets, colors bursting from every corner, people standing and jumping on car rooftops, hooping and screaming, singing and dancing. Vehicles being so packed with people, some had to stick out of the windows. We stayed blocked in the bus for many more hours than predicted, but seeing people go crazy like that, just priceless.
e n d l e s s bus rides, usually from the 5 to 8 hours, to get to one city to another, where at the end, after having exhausted every possible activity you can think of, you really don’t know what to do with yourself anymore. The beautiful views out of the window. The bus driver’s sexy salsa playing on the radio for the whole trip. Vendors coming in at stops trying to sell you old fried chickenlegs or plantain chips (which I actually really enjoy). Listening to music in that typical travel-meditation-state I am so addicted to.
That one time where I was alone in Nicaragua, the night before going back to Costa to catch the flight, where I danced salsa in a club all night long with some crazy people of my hostel and sharming professional dancers asking to teach me the steps, then goin back home in a taxi where Bailando was pumping in the radio and we were yelling out histerically the words for the whole ride.
The scariest plane ride of my life, in a micro shaky wonky flying object from San Jose to Golfito. Two passengers only. We could even see and talk to the pilots, so tiny was the space. But the view was worth it all (although I’m not sure if I would do it again).
We passed on to Nicaragua. We didn’t even plan it. One day we woke up, researched for new places to go, and one girl brought up this country. It’s right at the border, North of Costa Rica, so we went for it. That was one whole other adventure, but mostly absolute hammock time all day (Literally. Interrupted by meals. Then sleeping).
When I was in Costa Rica and Nicaragua, I felt free. I felt for the first time at ease, at peace, in harmony with what was. I found myself relieved of the baggages I used to carry around, and found myself immersed completely in my surroundings. I never felt something like that before. I tasted for the first time what happiness was like. You see, that’s why we love to travel. Traveling, especially solo, brings out your most hidden aspects and feelings, and you get to deal with them. You access the possibility to clean up your inner mess. You access your power, the power of choice; on the road, you have to chose, no-one else does it for you. On the road, you are forced to live in the present because otherwise you get your ass kicked. I never felt so responsible of myself as I felt on the road, and being responsible never felt so easy as I was on the road.
This was my very first acquaintance with the Central American countries. Before departing, I felt I needed to go, and when I went I discovered why. That trip was my first leap of faith, my first jump into the void, the first cross-my-heart-and-go. Trust myself, trust the others, trust humanity, trust in the goodness, trust in beauty and self intuition and that everything is going in the right direction. That trip initiated my wanderlust, love of existence, and trust in the greater plan. It was the initiation of my soul. There, I was born again, and it was when I began the journey of my heart.
Punta Mona Life & Panama Islands
To Be Continued