In 2013 I got laid off from my job, got rid of most of my belongings, said goodbye to New York, and braved the world with Rick. We’ve gallivanted around Barcelona, drank a lot of wine in France, stuffed ourselves with gelato in Italy, touched the Berlin Wall, fought off the mosquitoes of Lapland, chased the midnight sun all the way to Nordkapp, Norway, went for a dip in arctic waters, got my first tattoo in Helsinki, took a ferry to Estonia, got lost and couldn’t find our hotel in Moscow, saw Lenin’s embalmed body, marveled at Red Square, boarded the Trans-Siberian Railway, crossed multiple time zones, suffered from train-lag, swam in Lake Baikal, registered our Russian visas for absolutely no reason, waited for hours at the border to cross into Mongolia for no reason, went six days without a shower, then bathed in water shared with animal feces, climbed the dunes of the Gobi Desert, rode camels, slept in gers, shared space with scurrying rodents, herded sheep, milked a goat, mastered squatting, drank fermented mare’s milk, spent way too much time in Ulaanbaatar, got fined for not registering our Mongolian visas, went into culture shock in India, got groped in Delhi, watched men peeing everywhere, stepped in all kinds of dung, got Delhi belly (twice), witnessed bodies cremated next to the Ganges, discovered the best lassi on the planet, suffocated on traffic fumes, learned how to block print, experienced Diwali, escaped to the beaches of Goa, fought with poor internet, poor showers, poor beds, and poor infrastructure, missed NYC, missed my family and friends, missed sushi, missed a good cup of coffee, missed my clothes, lost my clothes, lost my marbles, wanted to cry, definitely cried, laughed, wanted to give up, wanted to keep going, felt emotional, stressed out, exhausted, exhilarated, strong, weak, elated, alive, lucky, unlucky, in awe, in the pits, disgusting, amazing, out of shape, starved, stuffed, and really just dying for a hot bath.
You’ve given us experiences from nine countries — eleven if you count our hours in Norway and Sweden, and you’ve completely wrecked me in the best possible way. You have been sumptuous and plump with memories ripe for soul picking.
We are only about half way through the trip which means that 2014 will hopefully be just as meaty as 2013.
I’m feeling nomadically carnivorous, so I think 2014 might be a good cut.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!