If you still haven’t found that one permanent thing in your life, just keep on searching. Some of the most amazing experiences in life come out of fear, out of trepidation and out of that incessant longing. And then life will throw you things that will remind you of why you do what you do, what you need to let go of and what you need to pursue.
I have been super terrible at writing this, mainly because there will never be the right words to define this experience. For how do you box all this inspiration, when they keep on permeating through your soul? I sit here, fidgeting with my little tea cup, which I have now grown to love. And I look back into the days I spent in Japan thinking of the most amazing people I’ve met and the places I’ve traversed. There are way too many highlights and I could only try to resonate some.
The first rule really is, be respectful. At day 1, I met over 30 people at the forum with a constant bow that echoed a deep rooted custom of respect. There were CEOs and company owners that shook my hand as if I was of importance, when really, I was a mere delegate. We stayed with our host family that uttered the welcoming words “you are not guests, you are family” opening our eyes to the kind of familial relation. Despite our different races we were all united and connected. Realizing too that there was no communication barrier because we all have a universal language, that of affection, of generosity, friendship and familiarity. We visited Sendai and Fukushima, wrought by environmental destruction. But somehow we know that there is a consolation to calamities, that tragedies always bare heroes and hope is eternal. We paid site visits to top companies, providing us with the the opportunity to engage with dignitaries. They inspired us with the the vital thought that we must work for society and not just for personal gain. And even with this packed schedule, we managed to have a grand time. Drinking plum wine and eating edamame, singing our crazy hearts out at every karaoke past midnight, because after all how boring is life if you do not let lose?
But what is all this for anyway, why do we have to explore unfamiliar territory? I firmly believe that everything, every tiny conversation, every sip of sake, every karaoke filled story, every firm handshake, is a preamble to one of the finer lessons in life, pay it forward. Time will only accelerate and it is in these lucky chances that reminds us of to be better versions of ourselves. Seek adventure, embrace as much culture as you can and let go of stereotypes. Push your dreams constantly, because surely there are no limits in life, not even dead ends. Really, we are far more obligated to live those dreams than to pass time in mediocrity.
If I could only catalogue every thought of how the Japanese (now I am humbled to call my friends) are an exemplary indication of how we must act, then I must write more. But I am just a simple delegate, stuck in impermanence, still trying to find my way. And maybe it will lead me back to Japan in the future, and then it will come full circle, I would have finally paid it forward.
It was 90 degrees when we arrived at the desert, towing along our 1979 red combi with a thousand other hipster hopefuls. The welcoming cops retort, ‘y’all don’t got drugs in here right?” while pretending to sift through our bags was the signal, our right of passage to everything hip. I had begun to feel the energy off the 2pm beer drinking crowd traipsing about in their sweat stained shirts eating spicy pie. Flags were flowing endlessly through the sky, and in less than an hour, all our neighbours had popped their tents. There we were, tecate wielding jet lagged travellers, finally settled in our first ever Coachella, the utter celluloid of cool.
The gates opened at 12nn and we immediately sprung to the famous roller coaster seeing the whole festival from the eye, I couldn’t have had a better vantage point that this. We walked through the grounds thereafter and really, I thought my heart came prepared for this. Seeing Haim’s eternal stage fvck face, a thousand other Ellie Goulding fans dancing in unison, squeezing ourselves in on Flumes set, trying to run to get to MSMR stage and just having enough energy to catch Outkast’s Hey Ya! blasting from 10 feet across, I was about to get a heart attack. My excitement officially geared to an all time high.
In the next two days I saw Chvrches, Washed Out, Capital Cities, Poolside, Flight Facilities, Foster the People, The 1975, Muse, Naked and Famous and man does the list go on. My legs were about to give up, and I had just missed Beyonce’s special appearance and Gwen Stefani+Snoop Dog hamming it up at Pharells set. A sandstorm alert also made its rounds but nothing could stop the whole festival grounds from beaming along. The Coachella moonman, (arguably the star of this weekend) also began to move, greeting every little dreamy earthling with “hey this is my show”. The 6 stages continued to draw crowds, and not one rested for the weary. As the flickering show lights began to ease off past midnight, Arcade Fire blew off the stage with its song, “ready to start”. I sat down, feeling every little grass brush through me. I was beat and knew my night was (pun intended) ready to end.
On our last day, I woke up peeking out of my tent, feeling like the dirtiest and most exhausted tiny person in the field. But I was also the happiest. I was told this would be life changing and damn it really was. Its really addictive, this thing called music. We were in an hourly trance and nothing else really mattered. If everyone revolved around the same bit of passion, bobbed their heads to a universal tune, and just learned to dance a little crazy each time, everything will be ok. Thank you and cheers Coachella, you were rad!
The few times in my life that I’ve had moments of absolute clarity, I was either out at sea or sitting in silence thinking how everything is meant to be. I try to make those moments last, like a really good salty wave or a calm, peaceful sunday. I remember every now and then how those kinds of days felt when you were around, we were grateful little kids proud to come from a long line of incredible people whom we took amazing memories from.
Its been 20 years and nobody really gets over that. But theres is no other occurrence in the past that has ever driven me to keep on doing what I love, one that has taught me to be my own pioneer in life. We have a kind of faith that puts our hearts in the right place, that kind of feeling that chases the gems in life called chance and destiny. And we owe it all to you, the one person we always wanted back, a missing piece of home.
Nomatter how many years you have with one person, it will never seem enough. I hope i made it count Pops, thank you for being our angel. You will always be the kindness in every stranger I meet. My anchor drifting out at sea. An avenue of light in the darkest road and the path to my highest summit. If there is one person in this world, who deserves more time here, it would be you. Thank you for keeping all of us deeply inspired. I miss you, every. single. day.
Love, Light and Sea Sprays,
We were sitting by the grass, clinging $5 nuttela crepes off the street watching everyone float by. A few months before, there seemed so many reasons to leave home, the main one a 1000ft steel tower that made the most distant of lovers, curious nomads and drifters become permanent dwellers in this scene. It seemed that, from any angle of Paris, there was “Le Tour Eiffel”, from my bus seat, my cafe window, my moving train. I hung on tight, closing in and revelling on every picture taken and every memory snapped between them.
They said leave your city behind, and so we find ourselves here. The city of Phoenix, Morisson and Hugo with all of their famed stories. Everyone or someone was named Francóis or Marion or Méchelle and they just fall off your tongue like its the high life. We hoisted ourselves through many museums, churches, rivers, finding enchantment in street names and statues as if quietly, we needed to belong. We sat on french steps, watching free music til the sun set and welcomed the night with flashes of Moulin Rouge down the alley way. There were love letters and rolling hills, carousels and rushes of leaves that passed every traveller. Even its dark corners and flares of graffiti held its charm, saying, this is Paris. We knew this was where we wanted to be, and forever seemed not too long to get here.
We know, there are all kinds of love, fleeting and constant. And like all other wanderers, we fell in love with this city, with purely the permanent kind. Encoré Paris. Whereever we go, we take you with us. Heres to everyday, every hour, where we always meant to say, c’est la vie!
I had imagined it the way it would be, breezy views, perpetual seas and dreamy coastlines. If it weren’t for that memorable trip not so long ago, id have forgotten this gem of an island was just waiting for me.
We arrived from a busy plane, 4 hours too long for my weary feet itching to roam again. I dreamt about this moment, being here. And then I find myself walking along Seminyak and remembered why I love this place. I couldn’t echo enough bliss when I saw Uluwatu for the first time. Or when I finally felt my little elephant, Ryan, hugging its long nose and gentle hides. Or when I sensed the rush of cold water at Ayung river. There was no fear, no reservation. Only a realization that fleeting moments come through adventure, lost journeys, and there was no hiding my desire for it.
There is a restless spirit abound in Bali with all its wild motorcycles, mad dogs and crazy nights. But the noble irony is that I would always wake up feeling calmness wash over me. There is nothing else to do but surrender yourself to the island and get lost at the depth of the sea.
Sadly, as in every trip, it isn’t the crazy rides, empty wallets or wrong turns that bring a vacation down, its always leaving. There is plenty of youth but never enough time to drift in this place, this wonderland. There will be a point when every travel becomes a distant memory and you’ll become a dweller of every place and every moment. But Bali will always be my paradise, a little piece of heaven. I have no doubt I belong to this island, I knew I was home.