Traveling is an interesting experience. It brings out something in you that you may not have expected. It can make you nervous and anxious to the point of having a near panic attack and moments later the storm subsides and you're once again at peace. Rather, as peaceful as one traveler could be. It's an experience unique and personal for everyone. One person may like Paris and the next person may find it dirty and overrated.
Thankfully, I've traveled before and while I'm not a professional in any means, I know how to get on a plane and I know what to pack to keep me entertained for a flight across the Atlantic. While I do find myself blindly following someone else and usually getting lost along the way, I somehow always manage to make it to my destination with only a few bruises, both mental and physical.
But traveling to a place you've been before is rather different. It's a whole other experience that tends to be both saddening and sentimental.
Traveling to a familiar place can be daunting. On one hand, it brings a sense of relief knowing that you know where you are and you've navigated it before.Years can pass and "the city still looks like how I left it."
On the other hand, going back somewhere brings back a flood of memories of a life you once lived, a good time that's long past and experiences that are getting harder and harder to remember. Memories once clear and vivid have since faded into oblivion, if you will
As I currently piece together a past life with a current life, I can't help but feel so much different than two years ago. I mean, I am different. I know slightly more and I feel certain things differently than I once did.
What once terrified me doesn't seem so scary anymore.
As cliche as it sounds, I think the key to all of this is to find the balance between old and new.
My old memories continue to crowd the photos album on my iPhone but these new memories remind me that I've done it once and can do it again.
This specific place was where I really came into my own. It's where I made a life for myself, by myself. A lot of the times this place forced me out of my comfort zone. I had to be self-reliant and somehow not let anxiety get the better half of me.
This is the place where massive hail ravished my skin and where I jumped off a cliff in the coldest of waters.
This is the first place I lived away from home; thus becoming a new home
This place embraced me once and I hope it continues to embrace me as I trek along the cobbled terrain, wiser and a tad weirder.