Long time no writing, we know. But the first three weeks back in Europe were a kind of friendly limbo for us: time spent in Faenza and in Bologna, families, friends, dinners and drinking, lots of train rides, washing and unpacking, just a bike ride (but hey, the Apennines are beautiful mountains, we almost forgot that!).
That was not “normal” life, of course: no work, not in our flat, much needed time to catch up with what happened while we were away: at some point, during the trip, it was hard to be far away and we still feel we struggled to be as present as we could when we were back, simply because it’s never enough.
Then there was this great parenthesis of a weekend in Tuscany for a wedding with other friends: beauty and happiness together, in a dream scenario.
Then: “normal life” kicked in. Well, two different “normal” lives kicked in. Mery went straight back to Avignon, she managed to bring all our stuff back to the flat we used to live in and got back to work. I flew to Lisbon and started a bike tour around Northern Portugal and the Portuguese Camino de Santiago. In other words: Mery got back to our “normal” life and I am still traveling, even if this time is for work. I’ll be back home in a little bit less than two months.
So… how is it to get back to “normal” life? Well, not easy. Especially if you add up some problems with the flat, with a building that’s not being taken care of anymore and an unexpected bad gift from the last tenants: bed bugs. But the rent has increased, of course. Then: everything now in Europe seems so expensive to us; plus, we are asking ourselves even more questions about what to do in the short and mid term; we find even harder – if possible – to be far from our friends and families (no matter where we go: more than one will be far from us, we kinda got used to that, but).
And a weird feeling in the first days: it seemed like we never went away! Likewise, during the trip, when we were so immersed in that life, I often asked ourselves: “have we ever lived in a different way than being nomad on a bike?”
Time will help us to find room for the memories of our adventure but there are a few things that will be even more part of our life: generosity and hospitality, for sure; the new friends we now have in may countries; the consciousness of the many ways and shapes life can take. And that’s how we look at the future.