Excerpt from journal entry #157 – 03JUL2019
“I want to go home. Immediately. I was overambitious to take on so many places in such a short period. I should’ve just went home.”
“I’ve made it to Lisbon from Porto and the train ride gave me time to think. I told myself (again) that I have full control of everything I do. If I feel overwhelmed, I have the ability to knock off a couple of places. I set my own goals and I can change them too and there’s nothing to be ashamed of. I’m feeling waaaay better than I did in the morning but some feeling is still lingering. I think it’s figuring out how to be alone again.
I made an unexpected friend though – Irfan, a hilarious and kind Canadian who approached me so effortlessly (and yes, I was totally caught off guard) at the hostel’s communal area tonight. A few minutes with this stranger turned into a night of exploration. The search for food led us to a fancy Portuguese restaurant we definitely didn’t belong in, we bonded over really personal experiences and deep-belly laughed every few minutes.
It’s like the Universe knew I just needed a friend to get past this moment of doubt and loneliness. Thank you, Universe.”
Portugal – Where I learned to be comfortable being alone…again.
From Chicago, I went off to Barcelona, Spain. I know, not Portugal but it was a good place to reset after a month long hiatus. After a few days, I travelled to Portugal. I had list of destinations longer than a CVS receipt. But with my style of last minute booking, the potential plans came with a pile of work and a very high price tag. I contemplated going back home every day in Porto. But like I wrote in the journal entry above, it all changed when I gave myself time and space to think freely.
My observations of the country was on a more micro level this time, specifically, the attention to color and details in everything! Lisbon is filled with narrow alleys, old but colorful architecture and intricate tile work. I spent more time walking around with my good ‘ol camera, trying to capture the things that seemed unique to Portugal. When I look back at these images, I see the visual beauty but also the feelings of doubt, defeating doubt and curiosity in the little things.
Before I wrap up this log, I want to make note of the instrumental piece I’ve chosen. This one may seem drastically different from the previous ones. My goal when choosing a track is for it to be a reflection of how I felt (because if you haven’t noticed yet, I’m a “feelings” person ha!). But this one- this specific one stopped me in my tracks during my search. It depicts the emotional rollercoaster I experienced from Chicago to Barcelona all through Portugal, so, so perfectly.