Friday, November 28, 2008

Goodbyes are never fun.

Today was a bit of a sad day, I said goodbye to Tamarah as she flew back to Costa Rica to finish out the last few days of her trip and then head home to Canada. She is going to visit some faily friends and then take off. It is never easy to say goodbye to someone you have grown close to, but that is the nature of traveling and knowing that coming into anything makes the seperation easier. She is a fantastic person and I feel lucky to have gotten to know her and spend the time with her that I did. I hope our pathes cross again some day.

I learned another thing too, and that is that traveling with a girl can be a lot of fun. Now, I know to a lot of people that sounds a bit rediculous and that what makes someone a good traveling companion depends far more on their personality than their sex, but here is my reasoning. I have only ever lived or traveled with guys as an adult. With guys, I know what to expect for the most part. I assume they wont mind getting dirty, traveling in places that may be a bit intimidating, occasionaly sleeping in places that may be a bit dirty, and dealing with stressful situations that invariably arrise while traveling in a way that I am used to dealing with.
With a girl, I had a bit of a fear that there would be too many feelings involved with everything, and that there would be a need on my part to have to always look for ¨cute¨ places to stay as opposed to practical places. I was afraid that I would have to skip out on stuff that I wanted to do as most girls would probably not be interested in the same types of activities. I was afraid that during a stressful situation I would have trouble communicating and dealing with it in a way that I was used to and that would not cause friction. And, mostly, I was afraid that I would always be on high alert and stressed out a bit trying to look out for the girl with me as a lot of the places I have been are a bit on the scary side around here.

Now obviously those thoughts are stereotyping quite a bit, and that in reality there are a lot of women that would love to do out doors types of activities, explore chaotic central american cities and be fine in stressful situations but in truth, the types of girls that I am normally around, would not. So, to meet a girl that I was attracted to, that was fun, self reliant, easy going and helpful in any situation, no matter how stressful really was great for me. I was happy to have my fears disproved, and now with experience, they seem silly to me. There were still times where I was a little on edge going though rough areas with Tamarah, but that is an unavoidable part of traveling and an acceptable risk.

So now I look forward to traveling with anyone so long as they have the right charactersitics. It also makes me think that one day down the road I can live with a girl, as that was something that I have always worried about! I have only ever lived with guys as an adult and it was tough for me to imagine it otherwise, although it would be a pretty lonely life for me if I didn´t try it! These past two months have really been a great learning experience for me and have made me reevaluate how I look at a lot of things.

As for now, I am in Managua, which is a pretty rough city. I have never seen a city so impoversihed as this, not even Tijauana. People live in dirt floored houses if they are lucky, and cardboard lean-toos covered in plastic tarp if they are not so lucky. The roads are as often dirt as paved and covered with mountains of litter and the people drive like maniacs, especially the cabbies. Speaking of which, the cabbies here are absolute sharks. They try and screw every gringo out of their money. I dont mind paying a bit more than the locals, but here it is obscene. They try to charge you 20 bucks for a ride that should cost 4. They lie, beg, renig on deals agreed upon, all to try and squeeze you for ever last penny. I hate it and seriously lose my temper at times and start yelling at them. When you agree on a price, get in, and then the cabbie tries to up the fare mid trip, I just cant handle that. I dont like most cabbies much, to be honest.

We got stuck here because our luggage didnt come with us from the Corn Islands on the morning flight we took back to the mainland. So, we had to wait for the second flight over of the day, which arrived at night. That ruined our plans as we were going to go to Leon and hang out there for our last few days, but obviously we couldnt go anywhere without our stuff. So, we had to get a room in a hotel in a really bad part of town, go back to the airport and find our bags which luckily did make it over. Then to get our bags, we had to ¨tip¨ the guys who helped us. Tip here meaning bribe. Finally, we got our stuff, and then decided it wasnt worth it to go to Leon for only a day and come right back. The Corn Island trip turned out to be a really bad move as the weather was terrible and it is very expensive there. It was really dissapointing as we had been looking forward to it, but oh well. Lesson learned, always check the weather before going somewhere! We managed to warn a group of Canadian travellers staying at our Hotel about the Corn Islands and saved them from a similar experience.

The people here are very poor, too. You see kids everywhere working their butt´s off. They stand in traffic carrying all manner of food and drinks to sell for a few cordobas (one cordoba is 5 cents). Sometimes you see little kids swinging hammers or diggin ditches alongside their parents, its crazy. I am gong to bring my kids to the third world when they are young and show them how other people in the world live. Hopefully they will see how incredibly lucky they are to live in the States.

However, despite the poverty, Nicaragua is still, along with Costa Rica, the safest place in Central America. The people are really nice so long as they aren´t sitting behind the wheel of a cab and I still love this place, despite some of the downsides.

So that is all for now, all my love to everyone back home and I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!


Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

I'm really surprised at 27 you've only lived with GUYS. I mean I don't know you are anything, but live a little man, get a chic as a roommate! Actually I've lived with both guys and girls and to be honest I favor living with guys way better so I can see your point. A couple of years ago I actually banned myself from having female roommates, there's just way more benefits living with the opposite sex.

Courtney (cast from cheeers) said...

u are writing a novel of pure inspiration! u have grown in evry thing you see and do... keep it up your a rockstar!

Reecius said...

Yeah, I have never lived with a girl! I have only ever had guy room mates and those guys were always close friends too, so I have always been a little worried about what living with a girl would be like, it just seemed like it woul dbe so much different! But i have hope fot he future now =)

And thanks Courtney, i appreciate that.

Donnie (Jadeius) said...

See there, Tamarah proved you totally wrong didn't she? Girls really are an amazing thing, very versatile by nature. They can usually handle left, right, upward, and downward extremes that most guys can't. You know what I'm talking about-- that old thing from movies where girls prove that they can do "guy" things just as well, if not better, than guys. It's cool that she was up for anything. Besides, she probably wanted your hot bod something fierce!! haha, who wouldn't though ;-P (no, I'm not a whore, I swear it! LOL)

Nahhh, in all seriousness, I'm glad you had yourself some companionship there, even if only for a short time. You needed that after feeling so crappy and isolated for that amount of time that you did in the hospital. I hope you will be blessed with many more adventure-mates as you continue your journey. Of all the beauty in the world, of all the wonderful things this world has to offer, of all the blessings that God has bestowed upon us, none is greater, more fulfilling, or more satisfying than love or companionship. REAL, caring, warm, loving companionship. Comradeship. Love is the only thing that lasts forever and cannot expire. Think of Genesis, the Bible's story of Creation; what's the first thing God did after He created Adam? He realized Adam needed a COMPANION, somebody to keep him company, so He made Eve, crafted her just to Adam's liking, so that he may never feel lonely or abandoned in that vast Garden!

Dear sweet Reece, you started this journey with the fear that committing and settling down would rip that wild, spontaneous, adventurous little boy right out of your spine. And now look at you! When it's all over and you go home, you will most likely assume a totally different perception of marriage and commitment; I think that you will find a whole new adventure, if not MANY brand-new adventures, once you truly fall in love and settle down with that one special someone whom you just cannot resist. That special someone for YOU will be someone who has just as much energy, vivacity, drive, and universal curiosity as you do. Somebody who will push YOU into new journeys, not just somebody willing to let you drag them along. I know that somebody is out there somewhere, and I know you will find that somebody, lest they find you first! And they will make you the happiest man to ever walk this earth, this entire earth at that! ;)

Thanks once again for sharing all your adventures, thoughts, insight, information, and even the hurdles you have encountered with all of us, your loyal readers. I cannot speak for all of us when I say this, but I can personally say that I love you and admire all the more for documenting your wild, extreme journey with such tenacity. You have the energy and drive of a thousand acres of hard-working mules, and you have the compassion for what you do of all the gods upon the mountain Olympus. This whole thing has been VERY enlightening and inspiring for me, and I'm sure it has been just the same for many others. You should be on CNN or something, man!

Remember what I told you when you weren't feeling well; no affliction is too small or trivial if it ails you at that moment, and now I will add that every blessing, no matter how big or small, is worth sharing and rejoicing in with others, as long as you feel blessed. That said, you ALWAYS feel free to write to me if you are distressed, suffering or bothered, no matter how much or how little. I will do everything within my abilities to boost your morale and help you feel better, no matter what, and I will ALWAYS rejoice with you when you share your experiences of all those little good things and all those huge blessings with me. Nothing is too trivial OR too complicated to discuss with me; I will always offer all that I can to help you along.

Stay safe dear friend, have lots of fun, don't get into TOO MUCH trouble ;) and always remember that you are verily loved and have people who care enough to listen to you any time! God bless!

Your friend always,


Reece, it's funny bro -- I always thought the SAME thing. For years I had refused to bring any girls with me on my travels, and I refused to ever live with a girl and/or get into serious relationships with girls. I just didn't think it would work. I definitely never thought I could travel with one.

Then I met Jasmine. She completely flipped all of that on its head. I've taken her with me overseas twice so far, and both times she's completely surprised me. She thrives on getting down and dirty, she loves to rough it, loves camping in the mountains for weeks eating nothing but the scraps of food we'd managed to collect and drinking out of rivers. She loved spending time in the deserts, in the forests. She could rough it with the best of the guys that I've ever traveled with, and even better than many, actually.

It's all about finding the right kind of girls. Once you do, everything changes.

Good luck on the rest of the adventures, can't wait to read more.

Reecius said...

Hey thanks for the kind words Jadieus, i appreciate that man.

Josh, you hit the nail on the head, its all about the person. I think now that it is actually better to travel with a girl so long as she is easy going and up for anything. It makes the experience a lot better. Traveling with a friend is like that too, as I am sure you know the feeling of finding something amazing and just wishing you had someone to share the experience with.

Also, I am 99% sure I will be in Northern Africa when you will be there, so i would love to team up.