I am currently nursing a head cold in a tourist town. Colonia, Uruguay is like a resort destination for citizens of Buenos Aires.
Pretty, a little pricy and a simple choice for weekenders. My mild fever and general lethargy has me with lots of time to think.
I am finding this last month hard. So much identity was wrapped up in riding into towns and villages on a motorcycle. It was a calling card of individuality and helped lubricate the encounters as a traveler, not a tourist.
Plus what ever glory I felt in achieving my goals is fading and the journey is ending in a whimper. Not to mention I’m disorientated by the ease of life on foot and busses. I miss the ab workout of strong head winds and slippery rain as riding does take some physical energy.
I know that it is my attitude that is at fault and I’m trying to reconcile this but for now I just want to kvetch.
How fickle is the human spirit to have moved my body across a substantial part of the globe yet feel disappointed that I only scratched the surface. My style of travel was very cautious and for that I feel sad that I missed so much. I dream of taking my acquired knowledge and confidence and do it all again. I suppose one could say that about most lives lived.
I can’t decide if my desire to continue deeper into world travel on motorcycle (Africa is next year… or so) is a healthy awakening of my spirit, or just further alienation from the world of the familiar.
How the moods do swing when traveling solo…
When I work in the recording studio I can easily grind away for 12 hours. Much gets done in that amount of time. Yet 27 years of that perception has distorted my notion of the length of a day. To be still (motionless) in travel mode (and not ill) seems to make a day much shorter. There are so few days in a given life. My Toronto, big city, carrerist instincts… struggle against the gentle passing of time. Let alone without a motorbike to put that, need to make life difficult, feeling to work.
Hmmm. Oh restless spirit… Who leads who?
Colonia, Uruguay sunset.
I uploaded then deleted another rant about leaving the bike in Punta Arenas.
Best I start shutting up about that stuff.
I will say that I was that smelly guy on the bus that we all can’t stand. My apologies to the fellow passengers… Cest la vie.
Otherwise the trip was pleasant enough for a continuous 36 hour experience. Three meals a day, a front window and lots of dignity. Route 3 is long and flat and boring. Two sunrises.
One nice moment was when the conductor asked for passports the young man beside me noticed it said Canada. We did not exchange any words but when our first meal of steak arrived with plastic cutlery he offered me his asados meat cutting knife. A formidable 5 inch blade he must keep on him with a holster. Then in the middle of the night he was dropped off at some lonely crossroad by himself, pitch black, still well south in Argentina. As he was leaving he startled me with a warm and heartfelt double handed handshake. I guess traveling from so far away sparked his imaginations and he wanted to silently thank me for making the effort to visit his country. It was very sweet.
Found a nice hostel and am getting ready to sort out visiting some of Uruguay on foot.