Day 365 - One Year Anniversary

Trip Start Nov 07, 2010
Trip End Jan 01, 2012

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Flag of Spain  , Catalonia,
Sunday, November 6, 2011

I've been struggling with this one for a while. Trying to find the words to encapsulate all of my experiences and adventures over the past 365 days.  For a time, I was numb, almost in shock at the realization.  Days went by and I still couldn’t grasp the essence of what this milestone means and how it affects me.  It took a full week before it hit me...  Nothing.  It’s just another day on the perpetual journey towards infinite ends and beginnings.  I’ve wanted to seize upon something, grasp at a meaning, whittle down to a wisdom of learned experience, but in that effort I forgot one thing - this is a lifelong journey.  There are no days more meaningful or important than the last.  Of course, a year on the road changes you, molds you in the ever present shape of whatever company you keep and country you seek, but whether it’s a week, a month, or a year, all that matters is your awareness of the moment and that what you take away from it is clear.  I’ve seen the best and worst of man - envy, greed, poverty and corruption, balanced against kindness, altruism, generosity and open mindedness.  Through these endless experiences of good deeds shared by others, I’ve been the recipient of countless acts of love and hospitality.  People all over the world taking care of me and letting me into their homes and their lives, like a member of the family.  My heart swells just thinking about every time someone has ushered me off the street, sat me down by their fire, fed me and welcomed me like one of their own.  I will never forget these gestures of true kindness, honesty and charity in the faces of myriad strangers.  Sitting in their home, whether it’s a bamboo shack or a Tuscan villa, I’ve learned so many things through their patient deeds - selflessness, modesty, temperance and empathy.  This year has tested the limits of my soul, found the constraints on my mind and smashed through the mold.  It’s opened me up to a world unexplored, and shown me the beauty of living in the moment with no possibilities ignored.  From Bangkok to Barcelona, and back home to my family, this trip around the world has meant so many things.  An end, a beginning, an education, a memory, an eye opening experience, a chance to run free after my dreams.  I’ve discovered a calling, lost a vice, acknowledged my wrongs and tempered what’s right.  In the end I’ve made new friends, and lost some along the way, but found myself wiser and stronger, and more capable to face the day.  It’s the people and the lifestyle of perpetual roaming that I’ll miss the most when I return, well traveled but weary, to the shores of my home.  Life has changed for me in these past twelve unforgettable months, I’m more confident, more assured, more aware of its small triumphs.  The moments in each day when you help another lost soul, give openly, love freely and never withhold.  The truth of this existence has been laid bare at my feet.  A million steps across the globe to finally see our true purpose and meaning, the goal of life’s aim, and once you embrace it nothing will ever be the same.

"Nothing more can be attempted than to establish the beginning and the direction of an infinitely long road. The pretension of any systematic and definitive completeness would be, at least, a self-illusion. Perfection can here be obtained by the individual student only in the subjective sense that he communicates everything he has been able to see."

-Goerg Simmel

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