A sweet kiss of Peanut Butter & Jelly
It’s about time to write again. While I try to put together an email in German for my people, the words just don’t float as easily, I know that it might help me to get it all out in English first. Maybe that’s because I still have a taste peanut butter and jelly in my mouth, or you know, maybe that’s just because it flows in my brain right now. Or a combination of both. Anyhow, I am sitting in a house in North Carolina, USA, built 130 years ago, wood top to bottom, walls and floors filled with messages, Ethel R. who graduated in it when it was a school house in 1926 and left her name behind, visitors that drew crazy clown or rabbit paintings overtop, or left notes they felt like the after-world should gift some thought process. While we are the only ones in the one of two bedrooms, we share this antique with lots of insects, crawling and flying, a mouse that I just saw run underneath the cabinet, noise from the acres of forest we’re surrounded by, lots of frogs and, believe it or not, the neighbor shooting his gun like a maniac, boom-boom-boom, shots just seconds away from each other. It’s far enough away but still so close, because I am simply not used to that. Here, it’s the topic. At the supermarket, at jiffy lube, in the wilderness. Guns and Hunting. We have two dogs that won’t leave our side, they are out here to help me feel less blind while I wake up at 4AM to walk 1 minute through the darkness for a pee, stumbling upon bones of dead animals that they’ve gathered.
Now to you, this might all sound a little bit ‘spooky’ or like a scary movie, but believe me it’s really so beautiful out here. We were welcomed to the states in a very similar house, our first night, spent with who used to be a stranger, an online friend of a friend of mine. He spontaneously invited us to his farm, where we got to see our first really old American house, heated by fire, and the only sink being the beautiful bathtub in the washroom. There, you wash your dishes, you brush your teeth, you take a shower. Isn’t it funny that that is so odd to us? In a world where we don’t question where the water comes from, how the heck it is hot right the minute we want it to be. This, my friends, is how time flies by, and it is up to us, to make it go a little slower. Basic living is the key, I feel like that is what the States seems to be trying to tell us, which is also kind of ironic, as this is known as the land of excess, the land of possibilities, and big money. Not for us. We get to see the other side. The most natural and yummiest peanut butter jelly time one could have.
With the summer, budgeting comes so much easier. All of the sudden, we are not so dependent on couchsurfing anymore. Which is good, because it seems to work so much slower than in Canada. (Canada woop!). But campsites here are plenty, and beautiful, and mostly around 20$ a night, devided by two, pretty much free. Also, after a month of traveling we did figure out how to sleep in our Subaru comfortably (yep, embarrassing! ), but just on time, as most Walmarts down here allow you to park your car/RV overnight and sleep on their parking lot. Wonderful, the washrooms and food is right there!
Nature has been breathtaking, but especially down here, where the Blue Ridge Mountains/ Appalachians are spread out in 1000 shades of green, wild forest, fading into dark blue and then light blue hillviews in the distant. My eyes are just forever in love and can’t stop looking. A new thing to get my mind wrapped around is being surrounded by snakes. I haven’t seen one yet, just a baby one the other day and a dead copperhead, but just the awareness of them being around adds something to your day. And that is another lesson learned outside of comfort zones: you gotta put yourself right out there, right in the center of your fear, if you want it to decrease.
Another thing that has become very clear is that my mind prefers the outdoors so much more compared to a city trip. I enjoy living in the city, but as a quick visitor I easily feel lost and drained. The people around you seem tired and oftentimes sad and I inhale their moods right away with all that pollution and it fogs up my brain, often.
But, all that, if you have read my last post, is still picking me up and motivating me to keep traveling, because in the end each journey, the harder the better, has many lessons in its pockets for you. While I sent out a lot of emails crying for help looking for affirmation or criticism on what I am doing, I got lifted up onto a cloud of support. I feel proud of my family, which is like my spine, holding me up from so far away, and the friendships I’ve built, home and away. Each and everyone is a teacher, and if we accept to learn forever, traveling will make us grow continuously.
If you are ever doubting yourself. Look at this formula that one travel friend, probably my biggest treasure, shared with me:
Count yourself as 1, and everything else you have as Zero. (family, friends, memories, things).
Accept that, without you, everything would be just Zeros.
And from that point onwards, you can enrich your life by gathering more and more zeros. Each of them will make your own number grow in a way you want it to.
Everything begins with self-love and nurturing your own spirituality. Feed your soul with hobbies.
I think that is all for today!
much love and hugs!