20 Mar Flying solo, what next?
Paragliding training, done! Random Paramotoring skillz week, done! Leaving Mexico and seeing a few places in Europe, kinda done! So what now? What happens after this little sojourn into the Spanish countryside? I have no bloody idea that’s what!
I came to Spain because I had booked and paid for Paraglider training and an apartment before Sarah and I split, and it seemed a waste not to stick to that plan. It also gave me a direction to point my new life in without having to think too much about what might come next, especially when so much changed so quickly, which in retrospect I can see left me making bad decisions just to feel like I was doing something. But now I am on the flip side of all that turmoil (somewhat), my brain is slowly starting to come to terms with things and I am forging ahead with some semblance of a new life, so what the hell do I do next?!
I spent the first week in Spain learning to fly without an engine, and then an opportunity came up to create some videos for my school Flyspain and I ended up spending the next week flying Paramotors across the countryside and at the beach. That opportunity continues to have some influence as it means I might spend April in Spain flying around with the guys from the school, and I have to wait for my equipment to show up at the end of April, so that kind of dictates my journey until at least early May. Probably, I am still questioning that one.
I am however at a bit of a loss as to where to go next, I have plenty of options, just very little idea of which one to take or why to take it. One thing I know for sure is I do want to leave Spain, I like it here, I am having some pretty awesome experiences and should be a very capable paraglider by the time I leave, but I can already tell it is not somewhere I want to stay. Which is good I guess because it eliminates one option and so I can evaluate all the others, and boy are there a lot of others.
I keep flip flopping between different adventures and travels. One second it is hiking around India and giving it a proper scouring with just a backpack and my superlight flying gear (you should see this stuff, so small and light, awesomeness), the next second it is heading over to Morocco for a few months and then starting a journey South through Africa. I am even entertaining the notion of heading back to the West Coast of Mexico at some point, although not for awhile as I need to scratch this damn itch on my foot first.
Options, billions of them, probably the Western Middle classes biggest nemesis, too much damn freedom, and then some. I can now fly two different styles and my wing will come with me wherever I go, it doesn’t have to be used everywhere and so I am not even using that as a guide to where to next, but I am pretty sure I am ready to leave Europe, I like it, and I haven’t seen that much, but there is something about the raw nature of countries like India, Nepal, China, Morocco and Mexico which grabs me by my wanderlust and gives it a good old tug.
I have an almost irrational craving for the chaos of countries like that, there is a feeling in these places that anything could happen, that the next corner could throw up some seriously random shit which will surprise and amaze me. Of course European countries have their own chaos and appeal, but in a less Westernised place, especially for a westerner like me, these things seem amplified. I need / like / love the explosion of newness that comes with being so out of touch with what I know and expect.
I do also love a bit of comfort and easy living, but I feel like right now I need to blow the lid off this mother fucker and tucker out my travel lust before I settle back into anything “normal”. Mexico is tempting, so damn tempting it surprises me, but I need to experience some shit first and really see how I go travelling on my own, give it a super shot to see what it is really like and so potentially appreciate both sides of the equation, solo and one day “couple” travel.
So far, it has had some really tough moments. Not the travel part, that part is a lot easier than I expected, getting around and sorting myself out, no problem! Being alone on the journey, that takes some getting used to. I am of course meeting people here and there, and I even like some of them, and some of them I like a lot. But it is taking some getting used to, this whole cooking for one malarkey. Right now I slip into moments of self pity, and so I know that the journey I need to focus on the most is the one which leads me to a new appreciation and understanding of the brave new world I find myself meandering through.
I am doing some awesome stuff, I am having some awesome fun. Getting fit and healthy. Jogging, working out and eating healthier than I ever have. I am still losing weight and if I do say so myself am looking pretty damn fit, especially considering the me of 3 months ago was a fat bastard eating pringles and watching Netflix all day. I have lost 16kg in 3 months and am still going down, which feels great. My life is definitely on the up, I am definitely heading in the right direction, I know these things but am still fighting off a bit of the old “Poor me’s”. It’ll go, I know it will, I can feel it fading as I keep moving forward.
I am also fortunate to have met Franka, whom I have grown to respect immensely, and whose no bullshit opinion has helped me acknowledge the validity of my self pity, but also its temporal and transient nature, which is allowing me to work my way through it, I also just like chatting to her as although we are incredibly different in so many ways, there are similarities to our thought processes which makes conversation seem easy, insightful and worth having. Something I miss on a day to day basis being solo now.
I am moving in the right direction, or at the very least within 180 degrees of the right direction. I don’t know where I will be from early May, I don’t have a plan beyond that or an idea of what I want, but I have options, and it seems every other day another option pops up so maybe not knowing is for the best. Maybe a day or a week from now something incredible will sit itself down in front of me and say “Whussup, give this shit a go, you’re gonna love it.”. And it’ll be good to be able to just get ‘er dun.