Posted by The SoleSisters on -
A blog is a great way to share travel stories, tips and advice. But where does a traveler store her most intimate thoughts and musings? A place where she can be herself with no pretense or judgment? I'm sure most of us still like to keep a travel diary or journal to write down observations, reminders or seemingly incoherent ideas.
When I started traveling, my journals became my most prized possessions. I enjoyed going through the pages, reading my former self's thoughts, and wondering about the places I've been and where I'm headed next. One of my favorite entries was written on my birthday last year.
I was asked to join GMA 7's Poptalk as a guest on their Batanes episode. I had a wonderful time with the crew, exploring what I would remember as the most beautiful place I've visited in the Philippines. But I didn't expect that the trip would last longer than just the 1 week I initially planned.
My backpack, which contained almost all my clothes, laptop and essentials ended up "stranded" in Itbayat, one of the lesser visited islands in the region. And to make it worse, trips going to and from the island were cancelled for more than a week because of bad weather. I ended up spending my birthday in Batanes, which a friend's family. All in all, it wasn't such a bad place to get "stuck" in. I wrote my thoughts down on my journal:
"On Turning 31
I discover that I'm not out to accomplish anything or prove anything to anyone. Not even to collect experiences or souvenirs.
I know everything is fleeting, transitory. My life is constantly shifting, moving and I dance along with these changes.
I stare at the waves and know that I am drawn to their energy, power and grace. Because I am simply a wave in a big ocean. Coasting along, transitioning, moving forward- always. From shore to shore. I have no home but I belong to the vast sea.
I move forward to lose everything- things, sanity, myself even. I lose everything to find myself. Because self is often hidden in the clutter and the noise. You never really see yourself for who you are until you have lost everything.
Valugan, Batanes March 2013
Sole Sister Lois
I asked my Sole Sisters to share a page from their travel diaries. Here's a peek:
Sole Sister Rica
For over two weeks I traveled with photographer Ben McRae into the heart of Kaokoland, Namibia in search of the nomadic Himba tribe. We awoke each morning, chasing the light as the sun rose over the giant desert dunes. This journal entry was written in Deadvlei, a valley where skeleton trees have been standing for over 1200 years. My time spent in the desert and with the tribe is an experience that I will hold dear for the rest of my life.
"Rule Number One when traveling in Africa - Drink lots of water. Rule Number Two - Bring a hat! Say goodbye to the dead trees of Deadvlei, whispering history over 1200 years in these desert dunes. We spent three days exploring the red sand peaks of Sossussvlei, camping just outside the National Park. Waking up at 3:30AM to be the first ones in for photographs. Chasing sunsets and the perfect light glowing across the face of the dunes. The first day we walked into Deadvlei I nearly passed out from the heat! Now we drive North, past lichen fields and meerkat homes, old shipwrecks beaten by the harsh waves of the Skeleton Coast."
Saturday, 24th of May 2014, Namibia
Sole Sister Lauren
Sole Sister Lauren
I practice yoga in the morning and I’m free to chill, surf, explore, hangout with some locals and take travelers around the whole day. The panoramic views around the island never fail to take my breath away. If you drive around, you’ll see travelers standing on top of the hills or on the side of the road, just frozen in awe of the beauty all around us. It’s pretty amazing.
The colors change depending on the season. During the wet season from November to February, the sky is overcast but the landscape is lush in a million shades of green. The buffalos, goats and chickens turn obese. As the dry season enters on March and stays all throughout October, the ocean sparkles in magnificent shades of blue and there’s not a cloud in the vast, open sky.
It has taken me a year to know the south coast of the island by heart. I have stared into these oceans and mountains long enough to know them like the back of my hand. Now everywhere I look, I see familiar roads and paths where I have happy memories on every single one.
I know I have the world to explore, but this island will always be home.
Sole Sister Adi
Would you like to share a page from your travel diary with us? Please send a photo and a paragraph to solesisters.weare @gmail.com. We will pick the top 5 entries and publish it on the next Travel Diaries blog.
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