“Difficult times have helped me to understand better than before how infinitely rich and beautiful life is in every way, and that so many things that one goes worrying about are of no importance whatsoever.” ~Karen Blixen
It’s hard to believe that it was a year ago that I set foot on Argentina soil for the first time. Little did I know the spiritual journey that was ahead of me.
For those unfamiliar, my motivation for moving to Argentina was complex. Like many people I was living my life based on other people’s expectations and their definitions of normal, and I was unhappy. I was not depressed, but I had that sense deep inside my soul that life was stagnant, and it didn’t feel good. I knew next to nothing about Argentina, so with an adventurous spirit I gathered all my courage, abandoned material possessions, and hopped on a plane headed to Buenos Aires.
I have had a lot of highs, and many lows. Perhaps more lows. Expectedly, I learned a lot about myself. For starters, learning a new language was not as easy as I initially believed. But I had a passion to see and to do as much as I could, and eventually return home.
In the end, Toronto is my home. That is the ultimate lesson that I have learned. I didn’t know how much I was going to miss it until I was gone. I’ve lived overseas before, and I’ve travelled extensively. Attachments can be dangerous obstacles to overcome, but the one connection that I was not willing to break, was my bond with Maude, my English Bulldog. There you have it. The truth. I am, and always have been, an animal lover.
Today is my last day in Buenos Aires, Argentina. I will miss it, and though I will no longer be living here, I will most definitely come back. There’s too much to see and do in this diverse, lush country, that to not return would be criminal.
Of all the things that I will miss the most, none is more painful than saying goodbye to Ramiro.
The generous and hospitable Argentine spirit is not an exaggeration. Ramiro has opened up his home to me, and has been the most thoughtful and considerate person. What I have observed in Ramiro is resolve. He has a deep-rooted passion housed in a solid foundation of calm and serenity. I have learned from him that no matter how sullied the road ahead may be, to remain positive, because tomorrow may never come. I am a more grounded person for having known him. I knew that he was special the moment we met. It’s not goodbye. It’s “see you later.”
So as insanely sentimental and absurd as this post is, I would like to say farewell to Argentina with a quote from my favourite book, Out of Africa, written by Karen Blixen:
“It’s an odd feeling, farewell. There is such envy in it. Men go off to be tested, for courage. And if we’re tested at all, it’s for patience, for doing without, for how well we can endure loneliness.”