Tag Archives: personal travel blog

I’m Home I’m Home I’m Home At Last

But not for long.

I’m still so freaking tired.  Still!  I slept my ass off last night and the night before, but my eyes invariably want to close.

I fell asleep at 9PM last night and woke up at 3AM.  I didn’t know where I was.

Me thinking – “This is a nice hotel.  I don’t remember this hotel.  It’s so warm and comfortable.  Oh, and my audiobook is playing.  So nice….”

Then I realized I was home in my room and I was like, “Praise the lord thank you I’m home!!”

For the last 40 days, I’d wake up in a different location every morning only to hike 15 miles to god know’s where.  Everyday.  Waking up sucked.

And when you wake up at 3AM thinking you’re someplace you never been and realize you’re safe and sound in your own bed, it’s like a snow day from school times 20.

I love home.  I am a homebody big time.

But I’m going to Peru on Thanksgiving to check Machu Picchu off my bucket list.  I got home late on the 19th, and off again I go on the 23rd.  Today is the 21st.  I just booked my flight.  A one-way because, well, you never know.

Hana wants to do Ayahuasca.  I personally don’t want to do it for two reasons:  The taste and the barfing.  But Hana is dead set on it so we’re doing a package deal of ayahuasca and Machu Picchu.  There’s a really nice retreat that offers both.  They even have a doctor present 24/7.

Oh god aya-freaking-huasca again.  Shit.  No thank you.  No no no.  I’m so done puking.  I don’t have to do it, I’ll probably skip it anyway.

I better leave.  I’m meeting some friends out for drinks.  I ate beforehand so I don’t have to spend money on dinner.

*******************

It’s now the 22nd.  I leave tomorrow, Thanksgiving.  I can’t believe I’m doing this.  But I know I’d regret it if I don’t.  That’s what I base all my decisions on, regret.

Last night I hung out with the 3 girls that ditched me after I came back from Nepal.  2 of them are completely fine with me, but the other one….I don’t think she likes me much and I didn’t have the mental energy to override it this time.  Or maybe she does like me, but she doesn’t make me feel relaxed, you know?  Not something you’d want to deal with after walking across Spain, that’s for sure.  It’s like she can’t decide if she likes me or not, she can’t pin me down and me being stupid empathetic, can feel all this and so I get confused myself.

People I met along the road on the Camino, never made me feel that way.  And they didn’t even know me.

My brother and I have this weird “gift”.  I don’t think it’s much of a gift actually.  But me and my bro are affected by other people’s energies too much.  It’s their micro-expressions that trip us up – we pick up on it.  And the tone they use.  We can spot bullshit a mile away.  We see the inauthentic, the egomaniacs and narcissists.  My brother wants to slap it out of them, turning to violence and anger while I curl up in a ball and question my sanity.

Why do some people make me feel uncomfortable?  Like I’m being probed?  I wish I wasn’t affected by it but when you’re freaking tired, all defenses are down.  This girl I’m talking about is starting to date and once she finds her match, her confidence will rise and her hard edges should smooth out.  Hopefully.

Anyway, it’s tiring is what it is.  Not fun.

Today I’m seeing my friend Mo to return her dress finally, and I have to stop in work to visit my office manager.  And the 3 girls I mentioned above are going out again later – I’d like to join them if number 3 isn’t there – too much work.  I mean come on now, can’t we cohabit in peace?

I should pack.

I woke up at 8:30AM.  It’s raining.  My room is trashed – the most trashed it’s ever been in my life.  But I like it because it means I get to clean when I get back from Peru – a new person is waiting to be uncovered.  I will reemerge anew.

My feet are still sore.  I need to brush my teeth.

I need to dump my brain out of my head, you know?  I can’t remember shit that happens.  It’s a lazy brain to a fault.  My brain acts how a homeless person looks.  I’m not retaining anything.  I guess if I do ayahuasca again, this will be my one focal point – to clear my head.  Sleep doesn’t help.  Perhaps it’s lack of a certain mineral?  Or I’m dehydrated?  Or it could be my messy bedroom, I don’t know.

Or maybe because my life has been crazy for the last few months.  No me time.  No grip on reality.  Completely out of my comfort zone.

What do people do when they wake up early?  I don’t know what to do with myself.  I really should pack…..

My plane leaves at 19:42 from Boston.  That’s 7:42PM.  It takes around 2.5 hours to get there, arrive 2 hours early, factor in 90 minutes of traffic to be safe and minus 40 minutes of boarding from 7:42 so I should be at the gate at 7 sharp….let’s calculate.  Beep boop beep….

7Pm – 2.5 = 4:30

4:30 – 2 = 2:30

2:30 – 90 minutes = 1PM

1:00 seems awfully early but I refuse to panic like I did last time on my way to the airport.  I will do anything to avoid fear like that.  If I was 3 minutes later than I was, my plane would’ve left without me – 3 minutes!  You know how nerve wracking that is?  And I hate cutting people in line.  I feel like such an asshole.

So, 1:00 tomorrow it is.  I have to be ready.  It’s a long 14 hours flight with 2 layovers.  I’ll get to my hotel in Peru by 11PM on the 24th and at 10AM the next day, we’re off to the retreat.  Fuck me.  Seriously.

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How to buy cheap plane tickets online

Short story:

The best way for me personally is to use Google flights.

Long story:

I hate buying plane tickets. I spent hours pouring over choices and comparing tickets on Priceline, Expedia, Travelocity, what-have-you. None of them come close to the power of Google Flights. You simply type in where and when, to and fro – and BAM a calendar pops up with the lowest price available. It’s a calendar that shows you what days are cheapest to fly on. All right there on one page without having to re-type new dates in and search again and again from website to website.

It compares prices for you. Click on the day you want to fly on with a price you can afford and it shows you where you can buy that ticket for that price which is usually Priceline, Expedia, Travelocity….etc. But the odd thing is, when searching through one of these websites (priceline..etc) for a flight, they skip over and don’t list all your options. You can ONLY find these flights on Google Flights.

I tried buying a plane ticket to Thailand and every site that I went to, they had me flying to Chicago, than Tokyo, than Thailand. Or Texas, than Tokyo, than Thailand – all really long layovers with 35+ travel time. Tickets ranging from $1600 – $2000. And in Tokyo, some flights wanted me to go to Tokyo and board a plane at an entirely different airport during a 30 minute layover! WTF, right?

I searched on Google flights and what do I find? China Air! China Air was everywhere! And they don’t take me to Chicago or Taxes – hell, they don’t even take me to Tokyo. I have one stop in Canada and then it’s a straight shot to Thailand. Travel time? 27 hours. Price of ticket? $1100.

So anyways……

It’s done. My parents know I’m leaving, I have almost everything I need for the trip. My first four days are already planned out which includes seeing the Jade Buddha and the Grand Palace.

My business is in the red zone, meaning, running low on funds.  I’m only going to Thailand because I have perfect faith that this month I’ll sell enough memberships to cover all my monthly bills and then some.  Perfect faith.  Yes.

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Pampering myself in Pamplona

I haven’t been writing or anything lately. All I’ve been doing is listening to audiobooks for hours on end. All day and all night, audiobooks. They are fantastic!

I took the train to Pamplona yesterday. It feels so good being here. There’s only about 190,000 people living here compared to Barcelona’s 1.6 million or Madrid’s 3.3 million.

I’m exhausted.

Last night I ventured out of my hotel to pick up some snacks at a grocery store. It was around 10pm, so many of the shops were closed. I was lucky to find a tiny convenient store open. I picked up pasta and sauce for dinner. I have my own kitchen in my room!

It’s still a small room even with having its own kitchen. My feet were literally hanging off the bed last night.

I ate so much freaking pasta while listening to a Sherlock Holmes audiobook. It felt like heaven to me, honestly, heaven.

And now it’s 1pm the next day and I’m still in my hotel room. I’m simply exhausted. I want to nap. I’m boiling water so I can make myself ramen noodles.

There’s only one thing I need to do while here in pamplona and that’s to go see that big stupendous bullfight.

I need to buy my ticket. It’s only 6 euros and a 15 minute walk from here. I saw the bullring last night during my adventure in finding an open grocery store. It was all dark and quiet. In a few short days, that’ll change.

This is the first time since arriving in Spain where I don’t have to hunt down a restaurant for breakfast / lunch, or get kicked out of a domicile, or woken up by people talking loudly in the morning (uh em..the British..uh em). Asians were the quietest and most respectful while surprisingly the British were the most brazen. They beat out the Irish, Australian, Mexican…etc. And it wasn’t the British men, but British women! They talk non-stop in one big lung full of endlessly loud expressions.

So yeah, this is the first time EVER where I can stay put. That is of course if my ramen holds out. I have pasta left over but I can’t even look at it. I ate way too much of it last night. It made my tummy wonky this morning.

I wish I had my laptop. If I had my laptop I no doubt wouldn’t leave my hotel room, possibly going so far as to miss el encierro all together.

It’s just that so much happens, so much in even the most smallest gaps of time that no matter what happens, who you’re with or what you’re doing, there is always a story to be told. That is, if your perspective is accurate enough and you know what you’re looking at.

If you can’t tell a fascinating story, than something is wrong. The thing that’s wrong for me is that I don’t have my laptop or my lofty bed or coffee shop to write.

I’m missing all the small stories along the way.

Like when that 100 year old Spanish woman kidnapped me and paraded me around town never letting her vice grip soften around my wrist. Or that Senegal man who kidnapped my company for a few hours on the beach wanting me to jump in the ocean with him. Or my experience with the Picasso museum, my emotional upheaval while watching a flamenco dance.

I can’t fit it all. I can’t write about everything.

I’m so glad to be out of the big cities. I’m so glad to be out of the hostels. All I can hear is the hum of the fridge and chirping of birds.

This location is perfect.

I’m in heaven. This moment is heaven.

I’ll see if I can scrounge up some video’s to post.

I put this clip together using two days worth of footage. The last part shot on the metro, I wanted to record how the cars swerve side to side when looking down the open isle. For this reason, along with many others, I love the subway.

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