One morning, on an island where nobody can’t keep track of what day of the week it is, rides are arranged, surfboards are picked up and hauled onto motorbikes, cameras and sunscreens and beach clothes tangle themselves inside drybags. We roar our way into a spot called Pacifico. A few minutes along the way, our hair tangle themselves too.
Continue reading “Returning to a place is returning to your non-self too | Siargao, Philippines”
Aren’t strangers lovely?
When we were kids, our parents would instinctively protect us by saying what parents of past generations would say: “Don’t talk to strangers”. Yet growing up (and by up I mean younger), sometimes I hope we become strangers to each other, not in the sense that we are threatened by the presence of the unknown another.
We meet for the first time, look each other in the eyes, smile, and if we’re more than lucky, spill our unfiltered selves and stories in a span of few minutes, hours, or days, which could possibly stretch for decades. We express more than we impress. Not being enslaved by the past or too conscious about molding an identity, we instantly become free and fluid. The connection turns out easier because destructive attachment or expectation is lesser or none at all. Then you part sooner than you wanted to. And though this connection might be fleeting and, on the surface, sad, there is a mystery to it that is ever drawing the two (or more) souls together. Travelers know this by heart. But can you imagine a world where even longtime friends talk to each other as if they are strangers? As if they are always evolving and always interesting that you get high conversing about the things that make your heart race because what the hell are we here for?
Pico Iyer described it as “the ones that play out in the soul, which have less to do with surface than with the interaction between a surface and a depth”.
Continue reading “On Vulnerability and Traveling towards Fleeting Moments, or Turning a Year Younger”
Months and years pass like clouds, so so easily. While drinking beer and eating barbecue with friends in a darkly-lit, Mexican restaurant, a thought flashes amidst the talk and the laughter. It’s 2016 and I don’t remember how I got here. That feels horrible and disturbing. We’ve done a variety of adventurous activities and experienced them like it’s our last day on Earth, we met the most interesting and creative people from different nations, we achieved a mountain of goals and desires. But what happened? How come I don’t remember? How come I crave for more? It’s an excruciating thought, to feel like we traipse here and there yet arrive nowhere. No wonder many of us feel like we’re wasting our life. Time is not to blame, nor the quantity of activities we explore and the circumstances that unexpectedly occur, and not even the people around us – these are external, for the most part we can’t control. But something that we can is our relationship with the situation – this is internal. The quality of life wholly depends on our being. A thought flashes again. Mindfulness.
Our intention is to affirm this life, not to bring order out of chaos, nor to suggest improvements in creation, but simply to wake up to the very life we’re living, which is so excellent once one gets one’s mind and desires out of its way and lets it act of its own accord. -John Cage, Where the Heart Beats: John Cage, Zen Buddhism, and the Inner Life of Artists
So how do we dance to our 24 hours while letting our mind act of its own accord? How do we give back to the gift of life?
Continue reading “A Mindful Life: I attempt, forget, try again, feel bliss, fail, discover, breathe and everything is okay”
Given that you’re a traveler and movement all around sparks and stirs and brightens your many lives, what happens when the external action and interaction ceases? What happens when silence arrives the moment you sit still and pause from the demands of the nomadic lifestyle? Where do you take the destinations you’ve been even as your journey continues?
Continue reading “When the Abstract Settles In the Stillness”
October 2013: I wormed my way into the path of traveling (let’s scratch those fieldtrips goodbye), that is to mention being on a cramped plane with the monotonous voices of flight attendants, squeezing inside the tuk-tuk with newly-made drunk friends from foreign lands, listening to the cool wind and sipping my third cup of instant coffee on a cozy hammock, walking along the narrow pavements of the city with a talkative guy from the hostel. It changed my life, and it kick started the best and the truest points of living. For one who speaks after 25 years of existence, I might have been born again. Every traveler we’ve met, every travel blog we’ve read may say similar things of why traveling is essential. Nothing can truly teach us how to live except by living it, and by living I mean plunging into it wholeheartedly.
Where to plunge, you say?
Continue reading “Basics and Beyonds”