Early 20’s is the time for me decided to open the window to new experience, immerse myself with everything possible. It’s the time where you’d be overwhelmed by freedom and insecurities. I couldn’t change the way I was. Besides I couldn’t stop asking question about my future. It’s like everybody I met on the road seemed to concerned about it when they know that I almost graduate within the year.
Some says it’s avoiding reality –travels- but in the meantime this is also the journey to find new definition of ‘reality’. I don’t think everybody should have a negative feeling once they’re hearing the word. Reality can mean happiness, and passionate. Depend on how you define it.
I’m writing this to you in the common room of the busy hostel in Hanoi, Vietnam. I want to explore my own region first before I go somewhere else like Europe or the States. For now I’ve got Burma and Laos –and now Vietnam and the next is Cambodia and Indonesia. (I’ll keep writing about it.) I’ve come to found that my broken English wasn’t get fix right away. Hostel’s where you started your trip alone in the new country and everyone doesn’t speak in your own language. Find time to sit still and listen to others and observing the city. I’m telling you, this city is basically a very big market. The entire city! If you ever been to Bombay and witnessed its craziness then I’d heard that this city is more dangerous. I almost killed by a motorbike that coming from every direction. You can’t walk more than 5 seconds without hearing the cars horn. Even when you sit at the street restaurant where you have to sit on stools to have a drink and you’d be curious why you didn’t get hit by a motorbike. The traffic system here wasn’t improved a bit since Hanoi’s citizen used to ride their bike, now they’d changed into motor-bike. And there’s not much of the traffic light in town. Which allow drivers to drive their car or their bike in any possibly directions. They’re not gonna stop or slow their vehicle and If you can survive after crossing the street in Hanoi. Then you’ll be a street crossing expert.
I give myself an A on street crossing. And a C+ on making friends. I know that when you decided to spend the night in the dorm room at the hostel. You have to talk to other travelers. Which I did, but not much.
I’m kind of kept to myself, more like, because of all the travel itineraries I’ve vaguely planned in mind based of the Lonely Planet, I’m here to write. I’ve met a Balinese who traveled by herself and have a talk one night. She climbed up in my bulk bed (she’s sleep on the lower) and tell me stories. Mostly about travel in Bali and Lombok and how her friend doesn’t want to go with her. And she’s the one who told me to write story about ’20 days drunk’ as the continuation from my previous entry ’20 days sober’. She looks very young. I’d thought she’s the same age, but she’s actually 33! This is the first time she decided to go and do this for her own good.
‘It’s now or never!’ she said.
After she went off to meet her friend who she met during the trip from Saigon to Hanoi (her trip was from south to north, but mine is the opposite) there was this Canadian guy who came to talk with me. He’s made this very impressive observation about Asian people, especially those who live in SE Asia. He said, ‘It’s good to know that now you guy have enough money to travels.’
Then I was like, FUCK YOUUUUUUUU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Maybe he’s telling the truth, but it’s the kind of truth that only okay if we’re the one who speak of. More importantly, it’s kind of ironic because this guy travelling around selling stooooooves. I mean, you can’t say this certain thing to others if you’re still looking for some cheap travels. Now I’m good to see you have enough money for a plane ticket to seek for some cheap lives here.
I’m sorry if I’d pissed you off by telling you this. But this is pisses me off and I still mad at this guy. And I think that’s why I gave myself a C+ on making friend.
If I say I didn’t like it here I’d be lying. It’s the time for using all money you have and taking any chance possible and buy that ticket that will takes you to the new level of understanding the world and the people. It’s my youth and I didn’t earn that much money for luxurious hotels or the first class seat on the plane. That’s a different kind of travels I wish I could come across later in life, when I’m have enough money but less time to spend. And if you chose to stay in hostel when you’re old (and even with plenty of money), people will judge you (because no one knows you’re rich), they’ll think you’re weird. I haven’t see old dude stay in any hostel from my witnessed. That I should take the advantage of my youth and spend it right with all the times and money I have. Maybe it’s not grand experience or anything. It’s just me trying to learn from what college didn’t teach me.
Now I’m so sentiment about living while I’m young. Then I figured out why I was so sentiment about it. It was because I only living my life day by day. Not purposeless, but full of procrastination. Even when I’m on the trip, I’m still postponing things away. Like I needed more time to adjust with the new city. This bed is so warm I want to sleep and then I would wake up and write later. It’s easy to think like this and then get depressed cause I’m realized at the end that I’m going nowhere, despite I was in Hanoi. I used to get this feeling back home in Chiang Mai. When I rode a bike and started to have new ideas. My eyes fixed to the street but my mind went somewhere else. From now on I have to remind myself that the road is no place for thinking. But ideas keep coming anyway. All I have to do is to try my best to remember it and not lose my head in it because I don’t want to risk my life with some stupid ideas, which seemed great to me at the moment and then it get staled. Writing all this makes me think I have to go out and find a night train ticket to Sapa: the town in the highland, northern Vietnam. I’d enough of this craziness on the street and the engine whine that never stops. I didn’t know anyone I can trust or travel with just yet. Part of it was my false because I was more or less kept to myself as well as the other tourists around me. All I can say right now is I’m not doing bad and this is fine.
And, above all, I’m really happy now that I finally get the perfect afternoon nap!