My Swedish friend, Sofia has been near and dear to my heart for thirteen years now and our stories of travel and adventure together run deep. There’s nothing quite like a travel companion; exploring certain parts of the world and unknown beautiful places just gets imprinted on parts of your soul and will never be forgotten.
We originally met studying abroad in South Africa in 2005. We studied, explored parts of Africa and discovered that we both had the itch for wandering the world. Curiosity, fun, and a sense of adventure was all we needed to decide that we would plan our next trip together.
A year later, we reconnected in Argentina with just our back-backs, our lonely planet guidebooks, and a tentative itinerary. We mapped out Argentina, Chile, Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Central America, and Southern Mexico. Plans were to work our way north and walk across the border, into San Diego.
We did just that. It was two Swedes and a girl from California; hoping buses, wandering village streets, eating local food, and immersing ourselves into as much culture as we could.
After Ecuador, we parted ways for a month and a half so she and Anna (our other travel companion), could check out Panama while I ventured solo into Nicaragua and Belize to scuba dive and explore the underworld of the sea. We reconnected in Chiapas, and finished our journey up along the western coast of Mexico, finally walking over the boarder into San Diego.
And here we are now, having lunch just days ago in Austin, Texas as if not a day went by. Sofia now has a husband and two beautiful boys (a 7 and 4 year old). They currently live in Austin and she has yet, fulfilled another dream of hers (living abroad in the States). Sofia has always been one to set a goal, choose a dream, and make it happen. This is why she has been such an inspiring friend to me.
And I love how we were just reminiscing (as we were on our way to pick up her boys up from school, trying to navigate the chaos of Austin traffic) and saying, “isn’t it crazy to think that all we had in South America was just our guidebook, our Fuji film camera, and our back pack? We would just find the timetable to the bus, land somewhere, and start wandering. There was no technology, no way to blog and post about our journey. It was just our ear buds, our journals, our deep conversations and our wild hearts.
What a trip life is. My travel memories will always hold such a special place in my heart. And I can’t wait to watch these next chapters of life unfold.
The journey never ends, my friends.