LXIII/ All those things they say in the books you haven’t read

“If you want to know what god thinks of money, just look at the people he gave it to.”

And some day you wake up and 4 months have gone by… Four months that I’m exploring and loving North America and it’s time to leave now. From Montreal to the deserts of Arizona through Alaska… Wow, even I don’t really realize how sick this is..!
But all good traveler knows that a journey is best measured in friends rather than miles and boy – what a ride! This trip wouldn’t have been the same without CouchSurfing – not even close. I feel so thankful for every one of you that hosted me all along the way. Greatly thankful for you have shared that slice of life with me and for you have brought so much joy upon my journey – my journey of a lifetime. From the remote log cabins in the Far North to the sultry deserts of Death Valley – I genuinely can’t think of any minute I haven’t felt home anywhere I found myself.

It’s crazy to look back and realize how much this adventure has changed me, how much better of a person I am now thanks to you all. It’s insane how much my vision of the world has been reshaped over and over again within just a few months… I’m just amazed at how much better life tastes now. Intense. Yes – in case I had to only pick one – ‘intense’ would probably be the right word .

On the road I heard the story of a Japanese lad that was hitchhiking his way through the world with his backpack and a whiteboard. He would obviously use that whiteboard to display his destination whilst trying to catch a ride but it wasn’t its sole purpose. Once he’d be offered a lift – and after miles traveled together chatting about everything and nothing – the guy would ask the random driver to write down his sweetest dream on the board and then pose beside it for a picture. I can only imagine how sick, unique and meaningful his photo album must be to that guy.

“It should not be denied that being footloose has always exhilarated us. It is associated in our minds with escape from history and oppression and law and irksome obligations… Living day to day, with absolute freedom.”

I’ve loved America’s general approach to the smoking. Met so many genius stoners over there that I stopped counting. How many nights did I wound up having the deepest and most interesting conversations I’ve had in years with people that were total strangers to me before we lit one up? I lost track. When that thing clicks and you go all passionate about what genuinely matters to you in life with someone that can only be objective in his answers and his perspectives because he doesn’t belong to your regular surroundings. The natural barriers and inhibitions collapse in a blink of an eye over that powerful thing you have in common and new bonds are created on their ashes in a fistful of minutes – as opposed to the hours of boring polite introduction it’d take when sober.

I’ve had my fair share of it while I was there. One of the things I loved the most was to go down to a restaurant stoned and deliberately leave the menu aside so I would ask the waitress what was good in that place, what was her personal favorite and then blindly order it. Close your eyes, trust strangers and – as always – get rewarded when she brings you the best there is with a smile on top.
But now I’m right here, spending the night drinking wine on a Californian beach with one of my best pal from my time in Australia around an improvised campfire under a starry sky… How are you ever gonna beat that?

Before that I was just living my life like I knew everything, and suddenly this bright light hit me and woke me up. And that bright light was you. See you later America, our love story is not over yet.
But you don’t close a chapter of a round the world trip without starting a new one… Good morning New Zealand!!

Been a chameleon traveler in down under for a month time now, bought a van and explored some more of that country that made such an impression on me once.
Travel. Learn. Love. Teach. Repeat. So has been my daily motto those five past months and it’s not bound to stop anytime soon. Life has just begun. Try a thousand different new things a day, savor every single bite of life and consider this a day on, not a day off.
I strive to build connections with creative and passionate people. I saw my first kiwi the other night and I learned to find my way using the stars thanks to some locals. I bust my ass, I don’t even live for the day but for the second. Waiting for the cyclone to strike, I embrace every single opportunity and challenge that comes my way.
Traveling is a privilege, don’t take it for granted.

“To my mind, the greatest reward and luxury of travel is to be able to experience everyday things as if for the first time, to be in a position in which almost nothing is so familiar it is taken for granted.”

Every big change in one’s life always starts from a loss of faith or an excess of courage. Damn, now that I’m here and I can finally take stock of everything I learned during that trip in North America,  now that I’m in New Zealand and I’m almost already feeling kinda nostalgic about everything I’ve lived during my time there, generally speaking – I feel like my time spent in The Great North has taught me so much. So many achievements unlocked, so many times I went far beyond my limits. Like for instance I’m so much more productive in my everyday life since I don’t postpone anything anymore.
If you are not surfing the wave of change, you will find yourself beneath it. One should not overthink, otherwise nothing would ever get done.

“Those who live intensely do not fear death. Only those who spend their lives accumulating things are those who panic. People who forgot to live are the ones who fear death.”

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