Tag Archives: reflections

One Moment: Those People

Ali waves to us from the top of the hill. We wave back, reluctantly.

It’s the end of our walking day, and we are scanning the desert landscape for a suitable campsite. We have our eye on an abandoned house on the flattened section of the hill not far from where Ali is standing. Continue reading One Moment: Those People

India’s done! What’s next?

We let our feet soak for a couple of seconds in the cool, shallow pool of water. We step onto the sticky plastic mats, doing our best to ignore the clinking sounds of metal plates being tossed into the wash buckets in the busy community kitchen. We cross the elaborate archway, and stand on the hard marble floor. Our eyes are fixed on our prize: the Golden Temple.

For Sikhs, the Amritsar temple is the equivalent of the Christian’s Rome and the Muslim’s Mecca. Devotees from around the world come to bask in its welcoming glow. For me, this special place marks my official finish line for our walk in India.

Continue reading India’s done! What’s next?

Curiosities…Bangladesh

We notice a lot of things when walking the world.

As similar as we all are, we do things differently, either because of customs, cultures or habits.

Here are a few of the curious things we discovered in Bangladesh, in random order. (Lluís does a much better job remembering and noting all these little things. Check out his post in Catalan, published the same day as this one; you can use Google translate to get the gist.)

Continue reading Curiosities…Bangladesh

Cooking Together

 

“Would you like some coffee? And we have cake…want a piece?” asks Mele as I untangle myself from my walking cart harness.

“Yes! Thank you!” Homemade cake and fresh coffee sound like a perfect way to kick off this phase of our trip.

It’s been a long travel day. The coffee feels good sliding down my throat, scratchy after an overnight flight. It’s nice to feel like I’ve walked into a new comfort zone.

Continue reading Cooking Together

Welcome! Come in! Tea?

 

“Choi? Chay?”

These Tajik and Russian words will long echo in our ears and our hearts. They are more than an invitation for tea. They are a way into people’s homes and lives. They are reflections of a kind of hospitality people in today’s busy world don’t seem to have time for any more. These words have come to mean “Tajikistan” to us.

Continue reading Welcome! Come in! Tea?

Lost in the Long Stretches

We trudge forward. Hours drag on.

Each step brings us to another curve leading to a long stretch of alpine nothingness. It’s just us alone in the world, heads down and walking different paces alongside the Panj River that sometimes meanders a few meters below or rages through narrow gorges.

There’s comfort in solitude. There’s unity between the human spirit and the natural world. There’s also a simultaneous sense of bigness and smallness, being a speck in the shadow of mountainous greatness while having a heart large enough to notice the smallest rock sparkling in the sunshine.

It’s easy to get lost in these long stretches in between Pamir towns. The monotony invites a meditative calm, a peace that comes with moving at about three kilometers an hour. It often, too, stirs restlessness and a string of unconnected thoughts anxious for answers or impatience from feeling like we are going nowhere fast.

Continue reading Lost in the Long Stretches