Every few days, I think of a new possible combination of places to go in my first year abroad. Overnight, I had a nine-hour sleep but awoke with a headache as the forces of weather good and evil battle it out and days of sun establish themselves off the coast here.
This headache and the dread with which I approach work also makes it possible for me to daydream about the life I might be leading one year from now.
I’m pretty firm on where I’ll be in my first three months. It’s Croatia. After that, that’s when matters change. Will I do Northern Spain and Portugal, then France, then Prague, as I first thought? I don’t know.
This week I’m imagining a different route. Pack up around now in January, 2016, spend a couple days in Venice, then make my way down through Spain, staying here and there, exploring Andalusia a bit before spending a bit in Tarifa, especially with a car rental. (If you’ve ever read the wonderful tale about following your dreams, The Alchemist, it largely takes place around there.)
I found a 330-year-old building I want to stay in for a bit in Tarifa. Amazing architecture, and to live inside a building that predates the first German settlers arriving in North America, where someone might have sat reading the first edition of the just-published in 1684 Principia by Sir Isaac Newton… I mean, this is mind-boggling stuff to someone still impressed her apartment is from 1931.
Then a ferry to Morocco, specifically Tangier, where I’ve found a B&B decorated to 1800s Moroccan glory. It’s jaw-droppingly beautiful and would be a real splurge, but Morocco is my dream trip. Like, dream trip.
I have a little town on the coast of Morocco I’d like to stay in, possibly for up to a month, just writing, relaxing, photographing the water, eating Berber food, and planning my future.
This would take me to about April or May, avoiding the hottest part of North Africa’s year. Then, off to who knows where? Perhaps Prague, Georgia, and other less-scorchy places for the summer months.
The best part of not committing to a plan is being able to dream of the endless opportunities I might have to explore and wander. All of them are good. All of them are enticing.
Dreaming is a lovely thing.
For now, time to work.