Friday, May 6, 2011

Confessions from a Backpacker

I was told by several travelers along the way that the 2.5 month and 3 month part of a trip is usually where the homesickness kicks in. Each time I heard this I would only laugh as I could not imagine that happening to me. Well, I was wrong and it did.

It started about a week or so ago. I was getting tired of constantly moving around, meeting new people and asking the same questions and getting the same questions asked to me. I just wanted a place of my own where I could hang out in my comfy sweatpants and just chill on a couch, order a pizza, and watch a movie with a good friend or a my family that I love and miss.

It really got to me when I arrived in Budapest the other day. I am arrived in a new city when it was dark, the directions to the hostel were not making sense, people kept telling me the wrong direction, it was cold outside but I was sweating from being so upset, I was hungry and wanted something to eat but I couldn't because I didn't have the local currency and because it was late at night I was unable to exchange any money or go to the ATM because I already went that day to pay the previous hostel so all I could do was just try and suck up the tears as I walked along the busy road with my big ole backpack on my back and tried to make it to my hostel, which I finally do an hour later.

I have made it through though and I owe most of it to a tipsy/drunken conversation with another backpacker named Dennis from Chicago who is 25 as well. We were sitting and chatting and doing the whole get to know you thing when we started to talk about traveling. He has been traveling for about a year or more so I asked him if he ever got homesick and he said yes. He told me that it will happen to you at 3 months, 6 months, 9 months, and a year, but then you get over it. I even asked him if he ever just broke down and cried and he told me absofuckinlutely. We then continued to share stories of being lost late at night and things not working out and then just laughing at it all. I could not tell you how much better that made me feel knowing that I was not alone.

After our conversation of just pouring our stories out to one another Dennis then tried to convince me to continue traveling on and to not go home so early, and that I am young and to do this now when you still can. He told me to take the money that I have left, fly to Sydney, Australia, try and find a job and go from there. He continued to tell me how he had done this in the past and how easy it is to do. I was almost convinced until I realized that Dennis is just one of those guys who is running away from life and to him that is a way of living it. Traveling is not a form of running away, it is a form of adventure and a bit of escape. I think its great that he can do that, but I do miss my friends and family and do look forward to seeing them and hugging them and being able to sit down with a pizza and watch a movie with them, and having a career.

I MISS AMERICAN COFFEE. It is probably the only thing I really miss about American culture. I am sick of these little cups of things they call coffee in Europe in which I can take down in 2 seconds. I want a nice big ole cup of hot coffee that I can carry around with me and slowly sip on it as I explore the city. Is that too much to ask for?! Also, I have found being a vegetarian really is not that hard after all. I feel that I eat better abroad then I do back home. I love the food over here and will miss it for sure.

Now to give a brief update on my whereabouts. The last time I blogged I was in Sarajevo, Bosnia. From there I went to Belgrade, Serbia which is a fabulous place and I could have stayed longer. Then I traveled to Ljubljana, Slovenia with some guys I met at the hostel in Belgrade and crashed at their place for a few days. Next I headed to Graz, Austria and stayed with a guy that I met in Mostar, Bosnia. Graz is absolutely beautiful too, love love love that area and Austria. After Graz I took the train to Vienna and stayed in that very expensive city for two nights. Not my favorite place, but I still love Austria.  From Austria I headed to Budapest which is where I am at now. I am leaving here Sunday to head to Zdiar, Slovakia. I am slowly making my way north, which is horrible because it keeps getting colder and I miss the sun and beach like crazy, and will someday soon depart from Warsaw, Poland back to the states.

I would like to end this blog with a final note that I apologize for any major punctuation mistakes as the keyboards over here are very different and sometimes I do not know how to insert certain punctuations due to the keyboard. Sorry!

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