Today I woke up with a strange feeling. Those who know well, know I enjoy getting up very early for a morning run; it’s what gives me energy the rest of the day, but this morning was different.
It was 4:00 am in Lima, and I woke up with a feeling of anguish… weird. I like to get up early, but being earlier than usual I started to check my social networks (yes, I also have that bad habit). That was when I read the alarming post of the disappearance of a friend I had met last year in Ireland: his family and friends had not heard from him in 5 days. I reviewed what her niece posted in a group of travelers, and after making sure it was true, contacted her to see how I could help. The only thing that occurred to me at that time was to repost the publication in groups and to people who could do the same and make it viral. Not to lose the rhythm, shortly before 7:00 am I went for my run and in that moment many memories came to my mind.
Two years ago I started traveling with The Pink Suitcase. How many memories on the road! And to think that everything started because I had to use a ticket and had the resource that I consider the most precious of all, TIME. At the same time I was studying Digital Marketing which fit perfectly within the adventure I undertook.
Looking back I see so many faces and outstretched hands that gave me encouragement to continue in this adventure, innumerable people who offered me food, roof to stay and some others with whom I shared part of the dream of some: live traveling.
All these unforgettable faces in my mind that wanted me to experience simple things for them and unique to me: learn the difference of the brie and camembert, taste the best Spanish omelet for them in La Latina, try to take steps of Irish dancing in the typical Irish pub, rediscover old friends with and share with them places in their current city, try pizza with beans, stroll enjoying unique landscapes in Sardinia or Costa Brava, taste homemade Indian food without spicy because I can not tolerate it and could continue until I got tired, but all of them, people who selflessly spent much of their time with me and proudly taught me part of their life experience. Nowadays when I am in my city, I often receive friends from outside and many times people do not understand why I ‘waste’ so much time with these ‘unknown’ people and I think they deserve the same thing that I received.
Last week I posted in social media that I did not regret what I had or who I had known at this time. Not all were pleasant experiences, it is true, but I believe that I treasure those that left their mark on me and always with great learning. Most gave me more than I could have given without expecting anything in return, especially when I was very far from my country and those gestures is something that a traveler always keeps throughout his great journey of life.
When I returned from my morning routine, I asked friends if they had news of the missing person, and the answer was, ‘Yes Ari, they found him … he died’. After minutes of shock and crying I remembered all the moments that we had with great friends last year and I just could not believe it. I hope that in this great journey that this traveler undertook, find light and peace … I do not know if we will meet in Machu Picchu as we had been talking a few months ago, but I am sure that somewhere and at some time we will see each other again.
This post is dedicated to all those traveling souls, to all who extend their hand when one decides to undertake this adventure and encounters unnamed faces that after sharing experiences of travel and life become part of us and we always carry in the heart. Thanks to all those traveling souls, particularly and especially to that traveler who left and never returned, my friend DR. * Written on July the 5th, in memory of DR +