I just got got a question from a new friend of mine, Paula Rivas, that she said I should write in the blog. Being so recent friends it is awesome how well we get along and what a cool connection there is. The question she asked me is the following:
(Paula)-“Rafa, listening to you talk it seems everything is always happy, great and beautiful…but that can´t be. It´s not real. There have to be difficult moments…tell me about them!”
It´s a great topic to write about. And it is true. Even if you feel like a hippy-monk-“vividor”(no translation found) kind of guy…there are still fucked up moments. So here goes!
What is the Nº1 FUCKED UP moment while you are on the Road..?
Aaaaaaaaaaand the winner iiiiiiiiiiiis:
HANGOVERS loneliness. Yeah… Boring huh? Anybody could´ve guessed that one, right? Nah. Not really.
When you are hitch hiking around, your money is quickly falling to a one digit number, nobody is taking you, it´s cold and raining, and you are fucking drenched, and you´ve got no idea where you will sleep that night and nobody to talk to……then…..THEN…you are lonely. REAL loneliness.
All the last “single-serving friends”………Fight Club quote, sorry…! Re-write!
All those last superficial conversations and talks you have had with most of the people who have brought you around in their car don´t count as a real conversation. The kind you need to have with a real friend who really knows you and you really trust in. You feel you only have yourself for you thoughts. And that can be day…after day…after day.. That makes you feel lonely…
The weather is bad…you are cold and wet and probably…most people don´t want to take you because you will get the inside of their car wet…you feel miserable. Your feet are “swimming” in your shoes, your clothes and bag are heavy, you know your clothes inside your bad are slowly getting humid aswell… That….makes you feel lonely….
You don´t know where you will sleep….and your money is running oh so low…. Then suddenly the “dude, I´m going to travel without a plan! Im going ALL THE WAY to Belgium hitchhiking on my own! It´s going to be crazy and epic!” sounds in your head, as you remember it again, like “Im a stupid un-organized idealistic over optimistic FUCKTARD!….WHAT THE FUCK AM I EVEN DOING OUT HERE!? WHAT KIND OF STUPID RETARD WOULD THINK THIS COULD WORK!? I DONT EVEN HAVE MONEY FOR A HOTEL FOR GODS SAKE, LET ALONE FOR A BUS TICKET!!!”. In that moment of deep despair and inner turmoil you really…really feel lonely.
Now imagine combining them all together. You have been on the road some days already. People have sometimes been really friendly with you, other times less. You have an unlucky hitch hiking day. Nobody is stopping…but hey! Let´s not blame them… its raining…its already dark…its freezing….and I look like a hobo that just went swimming. Damn, come to think of it…all my clothes…and my tent…are probably soaked…it´s going to be one hell of a uncomfortable night if I have to sleep in the tent….! Good thing I have some mone….. fuck. Spent it yesterday on those last beers. FUCK. That was retarded! I changed beers for the opportunity to sleep in a bed!?
Damn, think! It cant be that bad. Where am I…I know people all around..sure someone can help! Well…I don´t know anyone in the middle of…. WHERE AM I ACTUALLY? damn. The map is soaked. Phone running low. What else could go wrong?!
I need to talk with someone. An old friend. SOmeone who can lift my spirit..like for example…. pf…shit….I´m hundreds of km from home. WHAT THE FUCK…
Now that is what I would call lonely. Even the biggest optimist, after reading The Alchemist, watching “The Secret” and having just spoken with Ghandi would have a hard time feeling ok. And for all the rest of us…it´s horrible. And you even say: “This is the last time I don´t organize a trip…”. But hey…one week later you are on the same road..going BACK HOME and you are thinking “pff….a week ago I was just here…almost crying like a little baby…cause I was lonely…but I made it to my destination! And had fun!”.
And by the way…when on your way you suffer some set-backs….when you actually get there/see the person you were goint to meet/ whatever….it feels twice as good! 😉
As Paula told me, and I think she is totally right….THESE are the moments you most learn from. A crisis is a combination of a problem and an opportunity. Relish this opportunity. USE IT! Think of what you did wrong. Make yourself wiser, stronger,…. The experience this gives you will make you smarter in the next try…