Next time I am scared, or hesitant; next time I underestimate myself or an experience, next time I judge or class something before experiencing it, next time I try to play it safe, next time I attempt to follow someone else’s formula or rules, I should remember exactly how it is that I feel at this moment.
There isn’t anything in life to stop you from happiness except yourself and the way you look at the world around you. At this moment my heart seems to balloon up out of my chest so that is almost hard to remain on the ground. These travels teach me what a stunningly beautiful and good place the world is, and on a basic level, the people in it as well. Meeting all of these people and hearing them speak their minds, seeing the colours of the world; the golden hue of Central Park, the fading greys and blues of the snow-topped mountains around Seattle, the inexplicable texture of a cloud as it slips past a plane window makes me feel tiny and giant simultaneously. I want to be able to express the goodness that radiates out of great big huggable Gareth, or Olga, proud and defiant, the nuttiness of Zak who is all giggles or Anna whose flair for drama makes me look tame. Amazonian Bree who somehow thinks on the same train tracks as I do, or quiet, self effacing Sa’adia who makes people love him without saying a word.
These people show me that there is no cause to be scared or sad or hesitant in a new endeavour. With so much good around to be discovered, all that I can alter is how good my response to it all is. The most important part of the friends you make overseas is that though you might never see them again they will always be able to colour that part of the world for you. San Francisco is not just the sun on the bay or the pearls of the bridge at night; it is the swirling colours of CZ’s walls and the people within them. It’s the way Alex’s eyebrows make a teepee when he asks if you’re alright, and that feeling when you hit the end of a cracking swingout on the 9.20’s illegally slippery floor. The people whom you treat as special treat you in the same way. And that’s what makes you become a person who is valuable. The world can dwarf you but the people in it make you a giant.