And hes off, a neighbor´s milk duds before falling asleep, Ratatats LP3 to accompany the feeling of marching likes ants through the airport, and four flights later to Bilbao, where his host aita (dad) picks him up and a beautiful lunch of pescado and Rioja wine. Nothing happened my first day in the Basque Country, except finishing Yiddish Policemens Union, allowing me to sleep easily that night, with one mystery solved.
A small town is not very exciting when you depart with the image of an adventure ahead, only to find that your old friends are all at work and a car is hard to secure. My day trip to San Sebastian, or Donostia in Basque, helped me slow down and appreciate travelling a bit more. I walked up and down the beach, fell twice trying to climb the rocks to get this picture and probably got a sunburn. I wound myself up for four weeks at home, waiting to escape into the wild, only to find myself waiting for a car and my friends to arrive before really embarking on anything. While it sounds like a good idea to slowly build up the excitement over our trip, reaching the unknown lands of Kazakhstan a few weeks in, it is anticlimactic for someone used to jumping in to test the water. I am learning a bit about travelling alone, mostly acquiring my optimistic view that it will get easier with practice. A blind man walks into a bar where Im eating tapas. His friend buys him a drink wearing some strange electronic contraption around his neck. I dont talk to either one of them. Maybe next time. I did some reflecting on how people walk and what it says about them. No conclusions except that I may finally have overcome my long-held desire to be bow-legged so I could look tougher.
Not sure that Ill be talking to any non-profits around here as planned, with a local festival on Saturday, a compact, red Renault 21 to look at and papers to fill out for insurance before my friends arrive on Tuesday. We shall see.