“Not I, nor anyone else can travel that road for you. You must travel it by yourself. It is not far. It is within reach. Perhaps you have been on it since you were born, & did not know. Perhaps it is everywhere.”
~Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass.
Abroad 2017. An introduction to my journey. That in which I lived in Alcalá de Henares, España.
Rewind. Five months ago as my journey began, I remember packing my suitcase with a promise to myself. One where I had made another promise to never let go of it.
As for the original promise? Have no expectations.
If there were any mistakes of mine that yielded a repetitive lesson, it was this. To have no expectations as often they lead to disappointment. For me, this became the most challenging. How could I stop myself from creating fairly high expectations for my journey? After all, I’m a dreamer & was going to live in Europe for 5 months.
I remember staring at the window as the airplane landed in Madrid. I thought, I may not have expectations but I have one hope. That Spain is a journey of unexpected adventure.
Upon reflection, that initial hope became a few of the truest words I could think of.
On a journey where a path already may exist, I’m a strong believer in creating a new one for myself. Count this as spontaneity or whatever. It doesn’t matter. But, while abroad, it seemed as though I stumbled upon those adventures. And chose to follow, constantly creating my own road to walk along.
Yet, each adventure led me to a lesson or a strong reassurance of something I already believe in. Like each experience gave me something I needed in that moment. And I can’t quite explain it. Almost as though each “unexpected” adventure & crossed paths were exactly where I was supposed to be. That the road I needed to walk along was there the entire time.
Whitman believed some roads are only created for you to travel along. For you to find.
And I couldn’t agree more.
So, here is the start of unraveling my adventures abroad. Of sharing the road I traveled on.