There is an unusual yet spectacular sight to see when driving west from Calgary on the Trans-Canada Highway. The road scene is flat for a long way, overlooking fields and dairy farms, then it changes rapidly. The mountains seem to rise quickly from the ground like skyscrapers in the middle of the desert. It makes you feel like you are leaving a common world to enter an uncommon one. It makes you feel like you are becoming a part of something bigger…
The bus to the city is about to come. It’s a chilly summer evening in Calgary and I’m sitting in front of the airport’s arrival hall looking at the entry stamp in my passport with a grin on my face. I made it to Canada.
The hostel in Bitola doesn’t look as sketchy as its neighborhood. What is disturbing is the fact that I’m here completely alone after watching the receptionist take off for the day. I’m not scared of being alone, although I shivered a bit last night passing through nearby streets with no lights trying to get here safe. I just stare at the wall thinking about the recent events. I bought a flight to Macedonia only because it was the cheapest of options. But now my traveling without any deeper reasoning is falling into a trap. How the hell do I get out?
I sat in the train defeated. In a way it was the first time during the course of my travels that something didn’t go as planned. I felt miserable. Was it a mistake? I looked out the window up to distanced mountain peaks and remembered the old smartass quote: ‘Dude, there are no mistakes in life, only lessons’.
It’s been a while. I’ve decided to go home. The interesting part was that I kept it for myself. They had no clue, neither my family nor friends. At the same time I had no clue how this homecoming was about to confront with my wandering mindset.
I bought a flight ticket to Bangkok simply because it was the cheapest way how to get out from cold New Zealand to warm Asia. I wasn’t the biggest fan of Thailand and I didn’t become one after hearing all the stories about parties and prostitutes. But, as always, you’ve gotta experience it yourself to make a statement. And I say Thaink you Thailand, I’m your fan now.
That’s it. The New Zealand adventure is over. From initial 365 days I stretched it out up to 512, legally, with no regrets. Now it’s the time to sum up my Working Holiday experience and ask what New Zealand gave me and what took away…