Well now I have been back from South America for a month and transitioning back into reality has been tough.
I wanted to do a post which recapped a bit of my travels, share some lessons I have learnt and some new commitments that I have made.
I have come back to New Zealand with new eyes, a new lease on life and motivation to really smash this life I have out of the park. After experiencing something so life changing there is also the danger of just going back to 'business as usual' when returning to every day life, so how do you keep that fire and motivation alive?
Things I have learnt.
We as a country and people are hugely blessed, we live in a beautiful country and a lot of us enjoy all the things we want or we can at least work toward them. In most of South America there is a lot of poverty. Kids have hardly even held a camera let alone an Iphone. People dont have a lot but they no limit on love. On Sundays everything is closed so families can spend time together, streets are closed once a month so families and friends can ride through the streets on bicycles or play football. Families look after each other and work as united teams, fighting to build better lives for their children. Walking through the Favelas in Rio I have never experienced or seen such poverty yet such a community atmosphere. People are singing, children are running around playing, life is slow and relaxed. Perhaps we arent the blessed ones after all.
Learning from others. Before going away I didnt really truly appreciate how different people from different cultures were. Learning from people all around the world was amazing, and actually the way we think in little old NZ isnt (shock horror) the only way to think.
Traveling isnt just about 'finding yourself'
With all the good comes the bad. What a cliche but before I left I believed that I was going on this journey of self discovery. In ways it was but in other ways it was nothing like I expected. Theres another side to traveling that you often don't hear much about from fellow budget travelers. The sucky parts, the illnesses, awful 12hour overnight buses. Coackroach infested hostels, carb loading as thats all I could afford. Saying goodbye to new friends. But still I wouldnt have it any other way.
Every single person must experience South America at least once in their lives. I have only just scratched the surface. This will be my last post on my travels for a while as I'll be focusing on my zero waste journey over the summer, but here are a few of my favourite photos from my trip! (Ive thrown in a few of my new commitments too)