This trip is different from the one I started in 2006 for a variety of reasons. First, I am not homeless this time, though I may have to reclaim my territory from the cats when I return. Second, while I will definitely be training jiu-jitsu, the ostensible purpose of the trip is not, strictly, to train. (We will see how long that lasts, and drinking strong coffee and good wine seems like a noble purpose as well.) Third, I will be taking a side trip to Germany, but for the most part I will be stationary—in a place that happens to be thousands of miles from where I am usually stationary. Fourth, I will not be driving much, if at all. It will be planes and trains.
There are some other differences between the trip I am taking starting tomorrow and the one I took 11 years ago. Here are a few of them. I noticed when I was thinking about them that they sound like the ravings of an old coot, which I suppose is somewhat accurate. (Google “Old man yells at cloud” for context.) Back when I did my first walkabout in 2006:
- Starbucks charged for wireless
- My phone and my camera were two different things
- I used paper maps
- There was no such thing as Air B’n’B
I leave for the airport this afternoon. Last night I slept in my own bed for the last time for 5 weeks, and tonight I will be taking a red eye and landing at 4am according to my body clock. This means I am preparing to be very cranky. I should learn the Portuguese translations of “please stop talking” and “the sun is too bright.” See you across the pond.
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