Do you want to go somewhere? Do you have any travelling dreams? Spain, China, Australia, USA? What if I tell you that if you want – just go. It’s very simple. You just need to get out of your house and go.
This is how it started for me. I was a child, that was always interested in discovering new things. I was travelling around Poland, sometimes abroad, not too far – Slovakia, Hungary, my family didn’t have much money for longer trips. But I was going to the mountains. A lot. Smaller hills, where I lived, as well as Tatra mountains (the highest mountains in Poland), because my parents loved them. They were both climbers, and thanks to them I found the passion for travels and love to the mountains in me. But then, I wanted to travel more and more. When I was teenager, still in the secondary school, I started to hitch-hike with my friends to get to the mountains, whenever we just had free time. Hitch-hiking trips to the north of my country, to Warsaw, to the seaside. Discovering many cities, villages and beautiful Polish nature. Over the years, I was traveling more, went to Egypt, Israel (not by hitch-hiking, though;).
After I had moved to Krakow for my studies, I hitch-hiked abroad for the first time. I remember – long weekend in May, a lot of thinking where to go, and final decision – Vienna. Starting from Krakow, 5 hours travel and there we are! All of it by hitch-hiking. Awesome people on our way, awesome people at the arrival, where we stayed and spent the great weekend. We didn’t need any money, expensive hotels or bus tickets. Only small backpack and smile on the face. That was, when I realized, that everything is possible. When you want to do something, go somewhere, you can. Hitch-hiking gave me the feeling, that the dreams are actually supposed to become true. People are good and the world is amazing. Maybe it sounds a little too idealistic and, of course, you always need the common sense and consciousness with you, but I always trusted my intuition and it had never let me down.
I think, that hitch-hiking is the matter of both sides trusting each other. I trust the driver, that he is a good man, that he tries to help me, and he trusts me, that I am not going to rob him, destroy the car etc. So many times I had a situation, that the driver went to the petrol station for something, and he left the car running with the keys (and us!) inside. We’ve been invited to many homes, welcomed and treated as old good friends. Extra keys to the flat, words “make yourself at home” and you are just amazed how great people can be. How experiencing so much care from people can’t make you think, that people, in general, are not that bad. That all those terrible things, that we see in TV – right, they’re true, but not everyone is like this. So you don’t need to have bad attitude to everyone you meet. People are good. Really.
This is what 5 years of my studies looked like. Being a student usually means, that your funds are limited, but you are young, curious, with a heart full of need for travel, joy and discovering new things. I was lucky enough to be able to meet people, who showed me how I can travel in the best possible way. To have great parents, that loved travels and mountains as much as I did, and they understood, that I can’t just stay doing nothing at home – I needed to discover the world.
3 weeks long journey around Europe, with great people that I didn’t know that well before; only with backpack and a tent, to make dreams come true. To sail gondola in Venice, see Paris from the top of the Eiffel Tower, drive in the tunnel under Mont Blanc, almost got killed by unbelievable amount of bicycles in Amsterdam. Crazy New Year’s Eve in Barcelona, more than 2000 km traveled by hitch-hiking in winter, just to be able to drink Spanish Sangria watching colorful La Fuente Mágica, and then coming back longer way to see your crazy friends once again, while having a rest at hospitable monk’s place close to Paris. Hitch-hiking meetings in different parts of Poland, where I met some of my best friends. Holiday trips to Balkan countries, which gave us the opportunity to party with the hippies in Vama Veche by the Black Sea, to sleep on the Montenegro beaches and drink Rakija (home made Balkan vodka) with old friends from Serbia. Always looking for cheap flights in whatever direction, just to go anywhere, to see something. January in Bologne, February on Malta, spring in Brussels.
This is how it all started. And then it was even more, even further, even longer.
Remember, everything is possible. Dreams are there for you to bring them to reality. This is your life, the only one that you’ll ever have, so take the most of it. Explore, taste, travel and live the fullest of it!