Watch out traveler: it’s time to GO!

Aarhus.-2013.-Daniel-van-der-Noon-website2
Aarhus, by Daniel van der Noon

It seems that I arrived in Aarhus last Friday! I had a class in the morning and suddenly was introduced to the Danish tradition of “Friday’s bar”. After some beers I decided to go downtown with my new friends to have more fun. In the way to Skolegade I found many Danes completely wasted in the streets, something ordinary – under the Danish alcoholic standards. Then, I went to dance and woke up a year later with a terrible hangover and a voice saying: man, it’s time to go!

It would be the best description for the time I spent in Central Jutland. Honestly, I came here without any kind of ‘elaborate thought’ about the people and culture – but I was positively surprised by everything I saw, from the awkward to the politeness.

The worst moment for a traveler is the goodbye: you don’t know exactly how to react, even though you’ve been in the same place before. You must have learned how to deal with the fact of leaving, saying ‘see you’ to people and focusing in the next adventure. You must… but it isn’t so easy in the real life.

In the next months I’ll be engaged in something big that I’ve been chasing my whole life. I’ll be for the first time in Asia and I don’t have a clue of what comes next. I only know that late September I’ll be back to the old Europe for the second year of my masters in the UK.

Summer preparation - internship in Cambodia
Summer preparation – internship in Cambodia

I’m preparing different posts to discuss my overall impressions about Denmark, and in the next days this space will be a ‘crying memorial’ about everything I’ve done here – including what I’ve learned in classes and also the whole new world I discovered out of the text books.

I’m also planning some major changes in the blog in order to share about my traveling experiences, feelings and journalism.

As the time to say goodbye to my lovely Aarhus come, I keep reading one of my favorite books “The Art of Travel” – I believe that traveling is more than airports and virtual check-in, it has something to do with transformation and self-knowledge. There’s something beautiful about being a lost twenty-something, moving around the world wondering where’s going to be the final stop. If there is one.

“Journeys are the midwives of thought. Few places are more conducive to internal conversations than a moving plane, ship or train. There is an almost quaint correlation between what is in front of our eyes and the thoughts we are able to have in our heads: large thoughts at times requiring large views, new thoughts new places. Introspective reflections which are liable to stall are helped along by the flow of the landscape. The mind may be reluctant to think properly when thinking is all it is supposed to do.

At the end of hours of train-dreaming, we may feel we have been returned to ourselves – that is, brought back into contact with emotions and ideas of importance to us. It is not necessarily at home that we best encounter our true selves. The furniture insists that we cannot change because it does not; the domestic setting keeps us tethered to the person we are in ordinary life, but who may not be who we essentially are.

If we find poetry in the service station and motel, if we are drawn to the airport or train carriage, it is perhaps because, in spite of their architectural compromises and discomforts, in spite of their garish colours and harsh lighting, we implicitly feel that these isolated places offer us a material setting for an alternative to the selfish ease, the habits and confinement of the ordinary, rooted world.”  – Alain de Botton, The Art of Travel

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