Sunday, March 13, 2016


It's spring in Illinois.  The air smells different, and many different bird songs surround me when I step outside to try to get some signal on my cellphone.

My trip gave me what I wanted, a sense of the earth.  Bus after bus, hike after hike.  I moved across the Andes, seeing, feeling, smelling, tasting, touching.  A landmass takes time to feel and explore.  My body moved across the land in a thin line, barely scratching it, but the experience lives inside me.  Light, leaves, water, rocks, sky, clouds, snowy mountain peaks.  Conversations in English, Spanish, French, and bits of Portuguese and Quechua mixed in.  Meeting fellow travelers from all over the world, and local dwellers of Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia.

Living with just a few clothes in my pack.  The freedom of solitude, of spontaneous decision making, of anonymously hopping on a bus, minutes after deciding on a destination.  It is a restorative experience.

Three months felt like not quite enough, meaning it was just the right amount of time.  I'm glad to be home.  Time for new things, new directions in life.