From the last phases of my journey I begin to write about the beginning. Flashbacks have always been interesting. They never present the events of the past as it was, but with certain additions, subtractions and realisations. As it is said, in every moment there is simultaneous learning and unlearning. To phrase it in a more poetic manner, you add one feather of wisdom to your cap as you let go of another.
When one travels alone, there is more to learn than one can even imagine. You learn the unexpected, the unknown, the unimagined. It gives you the strength and opportunity to discover a self that remains unrevealed otherwise. Long train journeys give you the liberty to sit for hours at length not worrying about a certain task to be completed, allowing your thoughts to travel more than you yourself ever can. Letting them find new paths, to eventually wander back at dusk, and sometimes not.
Travelling alone can tell you how important it is to be by yourself every now and then. To not always be dependent on presences around you. You can’t always be around people, which is something we all have gotten used to- physically and virtually. A break from where you stay, your home, allows for a certain kind of comfort when you return- the comfort of falling down on your bed after a long journey. Of seeing familiar faces- and the happiness of disturbing the lines you made for yourself with the accomplishment of having gone beyond them.
Plus after your first journey alone, you feel the urge to travel more, to explore the world. The material becomes less important and you start valuing people. Your ability to judge goes for a toss because you meet people who are completely different from what they might seem to be and that’s when you realise that appearances don’t decide the characters of people. It might seem like a fantasy being knit together, but it is not. One needs to experience this to know that it is nothing but reality.
The train ticket not getting confirmed, facing unknown faces in a new city, trying to communicate when two people don’t understand each other’s language, encountering drunks on the train, old people wanting to switch your lower berth with their upper one, such situations summarise the journey.
I realise I am hardly experienced, as all this comes from only one trip. But this gives me the motivation and the excitement to travel even more. The first one was a bit more planned; the real adventures will begin with more unpredictable journeys.
So whenever you feel you are ready, pack a bag, get set and go!