As I sit at my “day job” and read travel blogs, I feel suddenly transported to moments from my recent travels through Spain, Germany and the Netherlands. I can feel the dust and dirt from Nowhere on my skin and the motion of Tobias’ granddad’s boat on the channels of Berlin; I hear the announcements from the church tower in Al Forga, Spain and I taste the herby good stuff I bought in Amsterdam.
I long for those lonely moments, walking through streets older than my country, browsing second hand books in solitude, where no-one knew or cared who I was. The anonymity of a different country where you don’t understand the conversations people are having around you; the romance of a sudden and unexpected cloud burst in a foreign city; the secret joy of listening to Johnny Clegg sing about Africa while you walk through Europe.
1. I am sitting in the sun at “the Italian house” in Castelldefels, 20minutes outside Barcelona with my new friend Nurse (a gay Irish Nurse with a heart of gold that I had met at Nowhere) and fellow Nowherians whom I only met after the event when I showed up at their house with Nurse. Maggi’s friend the hairdresser had come to spoil us all, cause after 3 weeks in the dust and dirt of the Spanish dessert we needed it. Problem is, the hairdresser does not speak any English and I don’t speak any Italian. So we have Massimo, the eccentric DJ, translating and repeatedly telling me “don’t worry, we make you beautiful.”
It was a nerve wrecking experience, but yes, she did make me beautiful.
2. It is a few weeks later after Nurse and I had returned to Barcelona and I had gone back to my couch surfer (with who I had fallen madly in love during my first week in the city – like my friend Nikki said when I told her about him – “Trust you to go to Spain and fall for an Alejandro”)
Anyway – couch surfer Alejandro was sitting on the floor of his room in their squat while Erika, the Hungarian girl who squats next door, works on his dreadlocks. I am lying on the bed watching them, thinking how random life is…
People on the other side of the world, strangers, who opened their homes and hearts to this quiet, awkward white African chick who very seldom understood what the hell was going on.
You changed my outlook on life. You gave me hope for the human race!
And I thank you!