Laura Fortune

International Travel

Feeling Better in Banff

National Park, Roadtrip, International TravelLaura FortuneComment

 

Well, I did it!  I recovered and watched enough “Say Yes To The Dress” to make me want to run to the hills and I did!  The sun sets here around 10pm, so when I felt comfortable enough to leave, I hopped in the van and drove over to Banff National Park with many hours of daylight still left.  I’m so glad I did.  It felt good to see such beauty, go on a hike, and to feel refreshed again.

 

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Lake Louise is the most picturesque place I have ever been.  It’s the type of place that looks like you are taking a picture in front of a screen at Sears.

It’s not selfie worthy, you need the whole shot, so I was asked by three different couples to take their pictures and in return, I say, yes, will you do the same for me?  And then I add, but I’m going to get silly with it…   

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No Sugar Coating

Life Learning, Roadtrip, International TravelLaura Fortune1 Comment

Let’s be honest, this is hard. 

Anyone who thinks this trip is all gorgeous views and sunsets and that I just magically float in a self-driving car from place to place is just wrong. I think about all that goes into each stop I make, each mile and route I chose to take, when to get gas, how to stay hydrated, eating healthfully and driving hours and hours at a time.  I have to listen to my body and decide where and when to stop when I get drowsy and need a nap.  I have to consider where to sleep for the night, how to feel safe and good in my surroundings.  Also, I am not totally free with time, I have places I need to land at a certain times.  I mean, I have a dentist appointment in Mexico and I am currently in Canada. 

All that was difficult, but manageable for me. I enjoy the challenge and adventure and I like these problem solving moments, I was getting by. 

Until I got sick. 

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There has been no scarier situation than waking up in the middle of the night in a parking lot in a small Canadian town and needing to find a restroom fast, but not being able to sit-up, much less climb into the front seat to drive to who-knows-where.  I made it to the one open gas station, and I used the bathroom, bought some medicine and made friends with the attendant, Tamara, as I thought I might be seeing her again that night.  As I returned and re-parked in the parking lot I was staying at, I climbed into the back of my van and thought to myself, “I deserve a freaking scout badge for the past 30 minutes.”

Another relief to see the sunrise as the morning came.

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I have been sick for the past two days, and with all the strain I have put my body and mind through for the past month, it’s not a surprise that my body has said, “stop, I need a real rest.”  I also needed proximity to a real toilet.  So I drove until I needed to make the next decision.

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I am currently at a hotel room smack in-between two gorgeous and famous Canadian National Parks.  Glacier and Banff.  It’s heartbreaking, but I have to accept that I still have a long way to go and a lot more to see, and I need to be healthy for the journey ahead of me.  So drinking water, Gatorade, sleeping and watching trashy TV is how I’m rolling for these 36 hours. 

 

 

Hey Canada

Roadtrip, U.S. Travel, International TravelLaura Fortune1 Comment

I took care of some business in the morning, making two post office runs and a trip to Whidbey Pies to have a piece of Strawberry Rhubard a la mode. 

Then I headed north to the top of the island and onto to the Canadian boarder.

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I realized as I waited my turn, how unprepared I was for what I might need to get through the boarder passing.  I had my passport and drivers license and nothing illegal, so I figured to try it out and if I don’t get in, I’ll just take a sharp turn east.

I handed the man my documents and we began our dance:

“Where do you live?”

“Florida”

“You drove here from Florida?”

“Yes”

“By yourself?”

“Yes”

“How long will you be staying”

“Four days”

“Where are your reservations for tonight?”

“…the Wal-Mart parking lot?”

Well, I was honest.

And I got in.

As I began driving in Canada, it finally hit me just how far away I am from everything.  Farther from friends and family, and none to see in the near future.  I've been far away and alone many times, but for some reason it felt more heavy.  Knowing how I've driven all this way.  And I have so much more to go.  I felt like a cat who climbed up a tree and has to figure a way down. Maybe firemen will come save me, or even better, a Candian lumberjack.  Making it to Vancouver felt like a celebration to me.  'Started from the bottom now we here!'

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I headed to Stanley Park, it's a 1000 acre park in Vancouver and I think I only saw a couple acres.  Geez.  The most beautiful city park I have ever seen.  Hands.  Down.

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After dinner, I headed to the nearest Wal-Mart.  Tonight would be my first night van-camping in a parking lot.  The sun was setting, so I went inside to buy a few things and use the restroom.  

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That Wal-Mart doesn't allow overnight parking, but the RVs began pulling in around the perimeter of the parking lot on the street, so I found a spot and began using my homemade window covers that I made back in Sacramento. Foam and duct tape.  Just like home.

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Mexican Dentist

Family, International Travel, Life Learning, Roadtrip, U.S. TravelLaura FortuneComment

July 6

My uncle and aunt moved from Breckenridge to Tucson and I was one of the first visitors to their new home.  Since the move they had began traveling to see a dentist in Mexico, a place highly recommended and much cheaper than American dental costs.  I have never had dental insurance and have always paid out-of-pocket for my extensive dental needs, so this appointment to see a dentist in Mexico was really exciting to me. 

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I had never been to Mexico and it just seemed to be a funny reason to go. 

I had a loose crown and it needed to be re-cemented, a simple procedure, from my understanding.

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After the dentist looked over my x-rays, it was brought to my attention that the loose crown was actually a loose tooth implant, and it was infected and needed to be extracted.  I was handed the tooth implant in a plastic bag, a prescription for antibiotics, a list of the costs that I will pay for a new implant and a follow-up appointment card to see the specialist in one month, after the bone in my mouth heals. 

I didn’t expect any of this.  I didn’t expect to have one less tooth for the month, to need to pay the cost for a new implant (it’s less than in the US, but still a pretty big expense), or to need to extend my roadtrip so that I land back in Arizona the first week of August. 

A few days earlier I was hit with the unexpected car loss and readjustment to the change of automobile, and now I was readjusting my trip again. 

It was overwhelming and shocking.  But the tooth problem needed to be taken care of and infection is nothing to ignore.  So I leaned into the change again and carried on.

In five days, I lost my car and a tooth.  Rolling with it.

Alright Tucson, see you in one month. 

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Two Weeks, Wut?

Moving, Life Learning, International Travel, PortugalLaura FortuneComment

At this exact time in two weeks, I will be sitting in the Lisbon airport, waiting to board a plane and fly back to the US.   

My plan is vague at this moment, and I have a few options for what I'll be doing while back in the States for three months.  The options so far are, a west coast road-trip at craft shows, an artist residency in Southern Georgia, a summer in Brooklyn working at a Summer Concert Series and other odd jobs, even an offer to live in Seattle.  In the next two weeks this plan will take a shape.  But also in these two weeks, I will feel a sadness and uncertainty about how I am spending my last days in Lisbon, until I return in September.

I have settled into a life of spending time with my friends, eating at local places, working at the studio, or being home.  It isn’t so different from my previous life in NYC.  I stopped exploring as much as I did when I first arrived, and a guilty feeling has hit that I just didn’t do enough and my time is running out. 

“It will all be here when you return,” is what I am told.  But the next three months hold so much mystery, and I wonder what I will have experienced and who I will be when I return.

I ran into a guy I met here in Lisbon, and he was telling me about his plans to move.  Even though I could see the trepidation of getting everything in order, I congratulated him.  I know from my experience you have to keep putting one foot forward and plans evolve, the fear is a waste of time, although difficult to avoid.  He agreed and told me of an old Portuguese saying that goes something like, 'If all you have is cold water for your shower and you don’t want to take a cold shower, then lather your body with soap and using cold water to rinse is the only choice.'  I still kind of laugh at this story, and ummmm, okay, I guess it makes sense.  Lather up, the rest is inevitable. 

I will miss it here, and I will try not to dwell on every passing day…the 14 days and one hour.  These are some of my daily sights I don’t want to forget. 

Saturday and Sunday Morning cartoons in Portuguese

Saturday and Sunday Morning cartoons in Portuguese

The view as I sit in the window of my apartment on a rainy evening.

The view as I sit in the window of my apartment on a rainy evening.

My next door neighbor, the Panteão Nacional.

My next door neighbor, the Panteão Nacional.

Sights I see walking to and from the atelier to my home.

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When I leave the studio, this yellow building always pops up in my view and I love that.

When I leave the studio, this yellow building always pops up in my view and I love that.

The Old Story

International Travel, Life LearningLaura FortuneComment
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My time in Romania was spent in one region, Transylvania, and one small village, Apos.  I like to say I was on Farm Island.  It was difficult for me to find time away, an ability to get off the island, and I didn’t try very hard as I found everything I needed on the island, good food, good people, a place to sleep and sweet animals all over.

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As island life and small towns go, there is so much to learn from personal and work dynamics, right there.  An event at Villa Abbatis was to happen three days after my arrival, so there was a lot of work to be done in preparation.  The people I worked with spoke Romanian, and my only language is English (a little Portuguese, yayyyy!) and a good work ethic.  The last one came in handy as I eventually made my way in with the workers, a group of people I came to really love.

The event came and went it was a “brunch”.  I’m not going to spend any time describing the celebration, besides to say, the food and music were wonderful and a great Romanian experience.  I knew so little of what was expected of me, so I ended up just busing tables all day.  Any server and busboy knows that term.  It was never ending and I became one with the dishwashing staff.  It’s a bonding that happens with no language needed, within a kitchen crew.  We all bond with laughter and eye-rolls.

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The brunch scene is not my thing in NYC, and it happens to be the same case in Romania.  It was interesting to see this age-old dynamic (upper class comes to experience authentic food in a poorer village), and I questioned my ability to stick around after the event was finished because I could see my presence was not necessary after the work for the event was done.  But there were a couple of days “off” and I ended up spending it with the people who live in Apos. 

For the next three days, I was invited to their homes and sometimes just showed up for coffee.  One day in particular I finished a task at the stables and went to one of their homes to see the pig butchering.  I arrived a little before noon, just as the burning was happening.  The use of hay and fire to burn the hair and char the skin of the pig.  After the pig was scrubbed clean and shaved, we peeled the skin off and ate it with a bit of salt.  The ear was cut for me to try, then the snout.  I have no resistance to trying anything new, and when standing there with the kindest people in their backyard, with a lamb and chickens plucking about and beer cooling in a bucket of well water, I trust their way of life.  It’s poor, but rich with so much knowledge and a way to move forward in life.  For the next 9 hours I stuck around and helped with every aspect of what is a normal day for two families every 2 months.  Utilizing every part of a pig that was raised in their backyards. 

For those 8 days on the farm, I experienced two worlds.  People that pulled up in their cars and paid for a brunch and horse rides, and people that’s only mode of transportation is a horse and wagon and the food they raised and prepared themselves.

 

I felt lucky to again be placed in an environment that was a new experience I could never have imagined.

Taking Chances, Romanian Style

International Travel, Life LearningLaura FortuneComment

I didn’t have the balls to answer Romanian people honestly when I was asked, what made you travel to Romania?  My answer, still honest, “I’ve heard it is a beautiful country!” but it wasn’t the whole story.

Traveling to Morocco and Romania came out of a necessity to leave the Schengen EU region to extend my time on this side of the Atlantic Ocean.  I was able to pause my tourist visa that allows me 90 days to be in the EU.  My deadline was to be back in the US for a friend’s wedding at the end of May, so essentially I am over here for 4 months rather than only 3 months in Portugal.

I found cheap, direct flights from Lisbon to Marrakesh and Bucharest, and so, Morocco and Romania were the spots.

I don’t have a bucket list of travel spots, there are too many and I am the type of person that is open to travel anywhere.  In someway, it felt like these places chose me, each so special for me to further learn about traveling and myself.

Romania is an outdoor enthusiasts dream.  There is the Black Sea, bird watching in the Danube Delta, the snow capped Carpathian Mountains, and the rolling green hills of Transylvania.  Upon researching where I would travel in Romania, there was a clear line of small mountain towns that led me to the Transylvania region.  But traveling solo, I found it a little unrealistic to be able to get further out of the little train stop towns to see the areas I really wanted to experience.

So I joined the website, workaway.info, and I sent an email to a man and his wife offering a place to live and work in the region I was most interested in experiencing, near Sibiu, Romania.  He responded that he didn’t have room for me, but his friend was having an event the week I needed accommodations and he may need extra help.

Two quick emails later, I had agreed to spend 8 days working at Villa Abbatis Equestrian Center in Apos, Romania.

Two weeks later, I arrived in Bucharest, and with no follow-up contact with my Romanian contact, I sent him an email confirming my arrival the next day to the Sibiu Train Station at 4pm.  I hadn’t heard back from him, and boarded the train.

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On a six-hour train ride, one of two options would happen at the end of the ride.  One, I would be picked up by my contact, or two, I would be in a region I wanted to explore anyways and would just carry on with a new plan.

I arrived to Sibiu, and there, at the bottom of the train station steps was a man I saw with a similar look of recognition I had seen on blind dates in NYC bars and coffee shops, “Laura?”

Gabriel stood there with two Romanian pastries and a bottle of water.

We hopped in his truck and he drove me to a farm. 

Essaouira (April 6)

International Travel, Life LearningLaura FortuneComment

After almost 24 hours of travel, bus, overnight train, and a long taxi ride, I reached Essaouira.

As my trip barrels on, more local people become entwined in my adventures, as I continue to open up to the undeniable warmth of the Moroccan people I encounter.  There is an evident sweet spot I experience in the last days of travel, where I am so comfortable in the movement and daily activities that I naturally begin meeting people on a deeper level and having really meaningful conversations.

In Essaouira it was the lawyer turned watercolorist, the two Arabic surf guides from Agadir, the fisherman gearing up for his day on the boat, the gentleman who saved a turtle from a chlorinated pool, a young man riding a horse at sunset, and Mourad the friend I needed to find on a recommendation from Marina in Marrakesh.  Each of these conversations were about life choices and expectations, and how any experience can be affected by the energy a person walks with.  The confidence and value we all can have in other people.      

A lot happened in Essaouira.  I embraced an authentic hammam experience all wrong but with compassionate and patient women around me.  I met a friend who I will always be in touch with, and a possible plan to go back and visit very soon.  I decided that the energy and desire to live in Morocco at some point in my life still felt very alive at the end of my trip, as it did at the beginning. 

One thousand chokram, Morocco.

Chefchaouene (April 4)

International Travel, Life Learning, National ParkLaura FortuneComment

I was anticipating a 2.5 hours bus ride, but it was 5 hours.  We had a pit stop and another lady asked if I was traveling alone.  We chatted candidly about female solo travel and it was easy to find common ground immediately.

Once the bus arrived in Chefchaouene, we shared a taxi to the medina and exchanged information, later having dinner together. 

After dinner we wondered around the square and in every direction, the streets were completely flooded with young Moroccan men.  I mean, shoulder to shoulder--this is a small mountain town--where are all the boys and young men coming from--what the hell is going on?  My friend thought maybe it was some dating ritual, but I didn’t see any girls around.  I bailed, preferring a quiet rooftop.

I grabbed a bottle of tonic water and a snack to sit on the rooftop of the hostel I was staying in.  I popped the metal top off of the tonic water and it rang like a champagne bottle.  I was in the dark, and the cap smacked me in the face and bounced around the floor.  I touched my face, glad it didn’t hit my eye, and after a few sips saw the blood on my fingers.

Bottle cap face wound.  Got 'em.

The next morning I woke before sunrise so that I could watch it.  I stepped out for a walk to take some pictures of the Blue City, only feeling like a d-bag for creeping around in the early morning with a camera while the kids are headed to school or people to their work.  Chefchaouene is the most photogenic city I have ever seen. It’s small and compact and the colors are out of control, so it didn’t take long to feel satisfied with photographs, and I bailed quickly.

I spent the day hiking to the Ackours Waterfalls in the Riff Mountains with some other people I met.  Green mountains and farmland that appear untouched was a welcome scenery change from busy medinas.

On my last morning in Chefchaouene with my sketchbook and watercolors with me, I found a quiet corner to sit and look at some blue doors.  I feel sensitive about invading the privacy of home fronts, so I sat off to the side and it seemed a very quiet spot.  After a little bit a man came to sit with me.  He is an artist too, and later I was able to admire the drawings he did of his small town.  He wore a NY Yankees cap like so many men I saw throughout Morocco.  I’m still wondering if 'Jay-Z made the Yankee hat more famous than a Yankee can', but I digress, it is a popular hat though. 

The young guy left me to tend to his shop and then another young boy came by and hung over my shoulder watching me and gesturing so happily, pointing to himself, the house and my drawing.  Two girls came to the do same, and it turned out it was their home.  They were so sweet about my place sitting in front of their home.  We went over the colors of my watercolor set in English and in French and later another young girl came out from one of the homes and sat so close, almost on my lap to watch me.  She said, “beauty” and she pulled out a phone to show me pictures she had taken of her little city at various times.  I’m sure the tourist invasion gets old, but it was sweet to find a way to capture a place rather than taking a photograph, and to share it with a young group that is well aware and enamored with the beauty of their own front steps and in their backyard.

Fez (April 1)

International Travel, Life LearningLaura FortuneComment

I found my compartment for the train ride to Fez and another young lady was there eating breakfast, no chitchat, I got that.  I opened my backpack to get my book and a moth flew out of my bag.  We both laughed at the sight and I bashfully apologized she said it was okay.

Everyone I spoke to in Marrakesh confirmed that Fez is much different.  I always asked how they are different,  “Marrakesh is for tourism, Fez is for culture,” always the response.

I felt it immediately.  Fez seems more relaxed and getting lost in the medina feels more manageable.  I sat at an outdoor café filled with men for a coffee, to do a drawing and for some Wi-Fi connection.  When I went to pay, the man asked if I would like to see a lookout of the tannery.  Another man led me through a series of dark tunnels and eventually to another man who took me to the top. 

I didn’t buy anything but that smell stayed locked in my nostrils as a souvenir.  After another few stops at workshops I was thoroughly lost and very hungry.  I bought a sandwich from a street vendor and with my first bite I could taste the smell that was rolling in my head.  Camel meat.  I’m not a picky eater and I was so hungry, I made my way through that snack.

I found my way to the Prospect Park of Fez, Jardin Jhan Sbil.  It’s a beautiful park with floral gardens and a lake with all Moroccan families enjoying the landscape and young people on dates and boys.  My affirmation was confirmed that my best life is achieved when avoiding boys the age 14-24.  They are the ones with no filter and nothing to lose. 

I walked up to watch the sunset at the tombs of Mérinides.  I watched more little boys torment pigeons and throw rocks at things, and saw the sky light up and the wind pick up and I had a sinking feeling of anxiety.  How can I live this life on the regular?  I want to experience all of these places again and there are so many more to see.

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Marrakesh (March 29)

International Travel, Life LearningLaura FortuneComment

Today I flew to Africa. I imagined something more wild than NYC with pushy people offering rides.  There were only a couple of men outside with signs at one of the most beautiful airports I have ever seen. 

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The ride to the Medina was quiet.  I asked my driver if helmets were mandatory for the motorcyclist, the query stemming from the sight of disheveled hat positions—almost like they were mocking the law.  As if the driver spun a helmet in the air and let it lay were it might. 

We sat in the van waiting for my assist to come take me to the riad.  I felt very Foxtrot Tango—but I was embarrassed.  Tourists stick out like neon signs.  I sat in the van watching a group of kids picking up a dead rat with a piece of paper and move it around from place to place like a garden gnome, and stepping back examining the best spot.  I mentioned they placed it outside the drivers door, thinking he might step on it if he left the car, but unphased, he explained what came to my understanding is that it’s spring break for the kids.  Gone wild—the little boy handling the burrito rat cleaned his hands by spitting in them and rubbing them together.

Marina showed up and rode her bicycle next to me as I walked to her riad.  She speaks no English and me, no French.

I forget the need to be direct.  Being indecisive and polite makes no sense anywhere but in the southern part of the United States.

“Would you like me to walk you to some shops and restaurants in the Medina?”

“Sure, if it isn’t too much trouble”

“Sure if you have the time and nothing else to do.”

“Yes.”

Thank god she did.  She stopped and made me look around at turns.  Directed me in a way I remembered.  She dropped me off at a lunch spot where I sat with half of my body out of the shade and burning in the Moroccan sun.  Halfway through my lunch a large butch Arabic lady sat across from me, cargo shorts, backwards baseball cap, a friend of the worker at the restaurant.  She told me how to eat with bread and use only my right hand.  Told me about her hammam and offered me a cigarette.  She seemed disappointed when I asked to pay for my meal, so I could relieve the left side of my body from the sun.  Heartbreak in the Medina.

I weaved my way back to the riad insecurely remembering Marina’s instructions and advice.  I was getting close and one advice was to avoid talking to a group of kids if they ask if I need help.  I passed them playing soccer, “ma’am, ma’am, where are you going?” I answer, “no merci” and keep going towards the direction I think is correct.  Two of them run up to me and say I am going in the wrong direction, and that gives me pause to stop and think.  Just as I remember I am correct these two boys have taken my lead as if they are now guiding me.  These two little dudes stand in front of my door blocking it so that I cannot use my key or enter at all.  They are asking me for a present for showing me the way.  I tell them to move, that they did not show me the way.  It goes back and forth for a bit and I get weirded-out for this possible future tax to enter my home so I give a stern, “Get. Out. Of. My. Way.”  Their eyes widen, they step aside, but they are no older than 10.  It was the first and last time I was bullied on the trip, but I continued to notice the fearlessness of the young boy that inhabits all young boys universally.  Note to self.

This trip is going to be an experience like non-other.  

Visually it’s one of the most stimulating places with oddities and all types of strange happenings, scenarios, people, and circumstances.  It’s stimulating from the mix of old world and time travel, and for it’s textures, layers, colors and monotones.  I am uncomfortable with picture taking – people aren’t tourist attractions – but I wish I could capture some of these weirdo moments and layers of life that are all around.

Two days later, I got up very early before daylight to catch the first train to Fez.  As I was leaving the riad, I heard what sounded like a fat old man snoring outside our front door.  I opened it slowly as not to startle the sleeper, but no one was there.   Only a very small cat, which from the sound of it has been on a two-pack a day regiment for 52 years.  Damn dude.

I walked in the street lights to catch a taxi and somewhere between last night and this morning I decided I could live in Morocco for a time or make regular trips here.  It's intriguing, the handcraft is spectacular, the colors, the food, yet all the gross parts feel familiar and comfortable, I've lived in filthy neighborhoods of Brooklyn.  But this place is infinitely more peaceful and rich with beauty.  

Let's Rewind (to October 2016)

Moving, Art, International Travel, Life Learning, Portugal, StudioLaura FortuneComment

I had always wanted to travel more.  I think at some points of my life I thought I would have someone to travel with, so I waited.  And waited.

One weekend in June 2016, two of my best friends became engaged, and I saw wedding RSVPs on the horizon.  I had waited long enough and it was time for me to book the ticket.

I was to spend 18 days traveling around Spain by myself.  My first true vacation that was over two weeks long, and my first time truly traveling alone internationally.

I began spreading the news, “I am going to Spain in October!” and soon I recognized a pattern.  The response I received over and over, “oh cool, you should also go to Portugal.”  I was all, No, I said I am going to Spain.

Eventually I planned a trip where I would split my time between Spain and Portugal. That trip for me felt like a rebirth.  I had found a pleasure that I have never known and it was solo travel.  Lisbon was my final destination, and the feeling was immediate for me upon arrival.  The tiled and painted buildings, the parks, the stone sidewalks, the lookouts, the river, the light, and I had a sinking feeling.  Like a love feeling.  I haven’t been in love in a long time, and the feeling in the pit of my stomach was finding something I wanted to be a part of….and then I met a group of Portuguese women in a light-filled beautiful cooperative art studio in a little alcove on a dead-end street, and I knew I wanted to be a part of their world, too.  I teared up on my walk home from those initial sweet conversations of how they felt about making artwork and traveling and encouragement of living in other countries for a time.  I had never wanted to be somewhere more.

 

On October 21, four days after returning from this trip, I bought a one-way ticket from NYC to Lisbon.

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On October 27, I told my employer of over a decade that I wouldn’t be returning in 2017.

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In December I sold or donated everything I had collected in NYC for the past 13 years.

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On January 1, 2017 I drove out of NY, with everything I owned in the back of my Jeep.

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I took a little trip.

Illustration, International Travel, Life Learning, Moving, PortugalLaura FortuneComment

I have spent the last two weeks traveling through Spain and Portugal.  It was my first time traveling solo internationally for that length of time, and I have to say, I don't know how I will ever want to experience travel any differently.  There was so much quiet time for me to just look and listen and observe people and to think and write.  It was the most special time I've ever had and it has opened my mind to making travel as much a priority as making artwork.  There are pleasures we all find in life, and these two are topping my charts.  

I've considered that prior to social media and online photosharing, we used to have friends and family over to our homes and pull out a dusty slide projector to show our boring vacation pictures to our loved ones.  I'm going to spare you the endless line of colorful architecture and beautiful farmlands and ocean views, and I will just post a few of the watercolors I painted while on this little trip.  

 

 

Sitting in a Gaudi creation.

Sitting in a Gaudi creation.

Sitting on a wall next to a river.

Sitting on a wall next to a river.

Sitting on a beach chair and people watching.

Sitting on a beach chair and people watching.

Sitting alone for dinner.

Sitting alone for dinner.

Sitting for lunch at a sweet cafe.

Sitting for lunch at a sweet cafe.

Sitting at the airport waiting for a connecting flight.

Sitting at the airport waiting for a connecting flight.