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Monday, January 14, 2019

South America Trip 2019



This South America trip started as a crazy idea after a major heartbreak. And over the past two years, it has become more than that because I got over that heartbreak years ago and because life happened. 


A friend of mine teased me earlier that this trip was for me to find myself. I laughed. I told him it was what I intended to do back in my first Big Trip when I was 25 years old. I found out that that's not really possible because we continually evolve. Experiences continually mold us. You only get to find out a little bit more about yourself without all the unneccessary noise. But what I gained are memories, wonderful magical ones that I wouldn't trade for anything else, not even the career and financial security I had to give up. 

Back then too I wanted to escape the life I had. I wanted to change my life, change careers. Like that could happen over five months. There were changes yes, they weren't anything drastic, but they were important ones.  

So why am I still pursuing this adventure? Because while I still can physically and financially at 33, I would love to do it now.  



But I also realized that it's hopefully a fresh start, or at least a good long break after the two years I've had. A good break from work which for the past year consumed my days and my well-being more than I should have allowed it to. I cried many times, something I haven't done since 2011.

A fresh start without the major relationships I thought would be constants in my life until I get old. I haven't really dealt with it as life has been so busy.  

A time to enjoy the certain kind of freedom that traveling extensively gives before I start a relatively more stable life. Because I can already appreciate the simple things, the routine, a place and a comfortable bed I can go home to, cooking pasta for dinner and having wine and cheap aged cheese to unwind. Being able to give more to my parents, because they deserve more. But still able to afford traveling from time to time. 

It has become more, something more meaningful over the years. I really have no specific expectations unlike the first Big Trip. It's not going to be like the last one where I had the need to do something almost every single day or go to as much places as I want. This time it's more relaxed and slow paced.  

I can't wait to experience foreign places and cultures again, hopefully meet new people, walk treks/trails I've been dreaming of for years, visit charming small quaint towns I've seen photos of. And more wonderful experiences I hope ❤️ 




ITINERARY 
Ecuador - learn Spanish in Quito and Cuenca and slowly ease my way into this huge continent / go trekking if I have more time and money before I leave the continent 
Colombia - Cartagena, Bogota, Medellin, Minca, and the small quaint towns of Guatape and Jardin
Peru - Huaraz (!!!!) for the Cordillera Huayhash Trek and other acclimitization treks / Machu Picchu with my friend Kat / cities like Lima, Cusco, Arequipa/ and hopefully Ausangate Trek 
Bolivia - attempt a 6000m ascent of Huayna Potosi (hopefully) / towns like Sucre and Potosi / Salar de Uyuni (I've been dreaming to go here since the ex showed me photos, google it) 
Chile - Atacama Desert (time and money permitting) 
Bangkok - if still possible, I plan to spend a few weeks training in Sitjaopho before I go back to work. I have always wanted to train in this gym since I started following one of the owners' instagram back in 2017 when I was just starting muay thai. 

But of course, as with traveling, I will probably not go to all these places, and maybe discover others along the way.