I have traveled for 11 months.
Leaving the USA with a bad taste in my mouth about what the country has become.
I am sitting here in Costa Rica, listening to howler monkeys that are in the area.
I’ve just read a post about Hope that Sprinter Life put out today.
I’m still recovering from my collapse in the bathroom from apnea or acid reflux, or something else, I really do not know.
What on earth is a 59 yr. old, single male, out wondering the world for, what is gained?
“I soon realized that no journey carries one far unless, as it extends into the world around us, it goes an equal distance into the world within.” ~Lillian Smith
Ah yes, lie the Amboy Dukes “The Journey to the Center of your Mind!”
That quote brings out what the gain is – the equal distance into the world within.
The wonders of the world – the Mayan ruins, the Egyptian ruins, Niagara Falls, museums, the Parthenon etc., etc., etc., have all been dissected, sliced, and scrutinized over the centuries and still they amaze those that visit them today.
I find that if I do this, but do not look inside me in similar fashion, I miss a chance to understand my life better.
I remember sitting atop one of the pyramids in Tikal, trying to imagine what was going on in the time period that Tikal emerged as a city.
Then, my thoughts drifted to what happened to these people, what was the reason for the downfall?
My mind left those thoughts, and I began to wonder about myself – where was my life headed, what was going to happen to me, was I just going to disappear off the face of the earth, with no structure left that proved I ever existed?
That is probably the case – I pass on, and the world continues on its merry, screwed up way, as it always has.
What is the purpose of the travel?
Is it to see the sights, that have all ready been seen by many travelers? There are many more eloquent writers then I that have written about Tikal, or the Egyptian Pyramids. Though not seen precisely through my eyes, there are only so many ways to look at a structure.
Would I have passed them by, were they not a highlight of my visit to Guatemala?
Man, I’ll tell you what – I’m impressed with that visit. I am REALLY, REALLY glad I went to Tikal.
I think, though, that the real joy for me is finding places to stay that I just like. Nothing grand, or a MUST see, or one of the top 5 or 10 locations, sights, views or whatever. I find joy in just liking something.
For example – I liked Lago Yojoa. I had a little cabin I stayed in. I gave Kelvin and Orlin a hard time about coffee in the morning and we played ping-pong.
I took a canoe out and paddled around the lake and watched birds. Went to a waterfall and a cloud forest. Nothing that you , the reader, has to see or do in your life time. It was that I liked the place and the people.
Santa Ana, El Salvador – Hostal Casa Verde. Not a GREAT HOTEL THAT YOU HAVE TO STAY IN. It is a nice little hostal, that allows its guests the use of a free kitchen.
Carlos Batarsa just has that type of personality that is conducive to being a host/owner of a hotel.
I was lucky to have arrived at the same time as others who just seemed to “click” with each other Naomi, Danny, Rejohn, Luigi and a few others just seemed to want to enjoy the moment, no agendas for anything else – just enjoy the company, food and drink.
These are the things that I enjoy, that I like.
To see howling monkeys in the wild, screaming and doing what they do – truly something I never imagined I would be doing/seeing.
As I write this, some howling monkeys are howling away, and you can hear them right in Tamarindo, Costa Rica.
Then I read about FATCA, a domineering law passed by the USA that states the banks of the world are to be the snitches for the IRS and Treasury.
If the banks do not want to follow the rules, they cannot take part in the financial sector of the USA ( Yeah, all this bailout money, TARP, and quantitative easing stuff – – it helped foreign banks A LOT!)
So even though I have left the USA, the USA has not felt it should lose access to my income nor my assets. Ah, I will always wonder how we lost our freedoms in the USA – was it just ignorance of the masses, a concerted effort of the powers that be – in the long run it makes no difference how I figure – freedoms have been lost, and probably will not return in my lifetime.
So, too, with other travelers – you may have left your country, but your country still wants your money and your assets – freedom of the traveler is becoming more limited! Another realization when looking within and seeing how the world is affecting my life. (yours, too)
So, to sum up – the things that are important to me in my travels is the LIKING aspect. I am not writing this stuff to tell you what you should see, what you should do and what deals you CANNOT MISS!!!!
I will share with you what I like – hostal’s that have good hosts, hotels that have good owners (Hotel Casino, Casares. Nicaragua), places that are peaceful and serene (Lago Yojoa, El Estor Guatemala) that, if one wants to get away from it all, are affordable at anytime of the year.
These are also the things I like to read about on other travel blogs and sites. What do YOU find that YOU like. What makes YOU happy and content, that writer and photographer on that blog/wordpress/eblog site?
The sharing that Sprinter Life did on Hope was an enjoyable read, it allowed me to get to know the author better, get a feel for what she is like and how she thinks.
That is the inner journey that a traveler should experience.
Do the values of the traveler hold up?
Perceptions change when different cultures seen?
Looking out into the vast oceans, does the traveler feel small in comparison?
I hope to share and read more, not only of the MUST SEES, the 5 MUST DO’S, etc., etc, but also share in the inner journey of the writer – what is happening inside the mind, the soul, the person?
Is traveling allowing you a chance for an inner journey too?
If so, please share!
Cheers for now.