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Preparing to Travel: Stress & Goodbyes……

Too Much to Do Too Little Time

So it turns out planning a nine month backpacking trip isn’t as easy as I thought. Or rather, trying to combine preparing to travel with working a 9-6pm job 5 days a week, a part time job 2 nights a week, trying to see all my friends & family before I leave, and putting something up on the blog every now and again! And now, a mere 2 weeks before I start my journey I am lurching between total calm and blind panic. And every feeling in between!

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My sanity will catch up with me eventually, I’m sure. I just need to focus on what is really important. At least now I have most of the practical trip stuff arranged – travel insurance, hiking boots, waterproof coat, and the rest. There are still a few bits and bobs left to get, but nothing that can’t be done quickly and easily. Having said that, I have so many lists dotted around my apartment on various pieces of paper – lists of stuff to finish at work (1 week left to go!), stuff to do at the weekend, stuff to do the last week I’m here (thankfully off work and free to prepare/panic as I see fit).

But my diary is filling up fast with parties, drinks, last suppers, and a massage that I was gifted nearly a year ago and I don’t want to waste! All of these things are important to me, as I feel like I need to squeeze the very last bit of enjoyment out of Barcelona before I leave. However, I know that there will never be a way to do everything I want to, that there will always be something I don’t have time to do, or someone I don’t have time to see – but prioritising all these ‘important’ things can be tough.

So how do I choose between the ‘nice to do’ and ‘must do’ when everyone is giving me different advice? I suppose planning my last 2 weeks here is similar to the first 2 weeks of my trip in Bolivia. There is so much I want to do, but it is physically impossible to do everything in the time I have available. With Bolivia I decided I had to leave some things until I re-visited the country further along in my trip. Luckily Bolivia’s geographical location means visiting the Salar de Uyuni salt flats will be possible later on via Argentina or Chile, so I have made peace with my choice to skip that during the first days there. But Barcelona, will I ever come back to you? To visit of course yes, I have no doubt. But to live? To see the city as my home again? I’m not sure.

There will definitely be a few people I just can’t see before I go. For holidays, logistics, and time will all stack up against us and we’ll have to save our goodbyes for when I come back and visit. For the city itself I am trying to do a few more things I’ve never done here, as well as do my favourite things one last time. The last visits to Montjuic or Tibidabo for THOSE view of Barcelona. The last bottle of cava at Can Paixano…. Although a friend of mine pointed out – don’t worry about re-doing things that you’ve already done; you have a future filled with things you’ve never done, so concentrate on those instead!   Wise words. So I’ve decided to just go with the flow, and what will be will be.

Don’t worry about re-doing things that you’ve already done; you have a future filled with things you’ve never done, so concentrate on those instead!

It’s strange, it feels like the end of a relationship. When you have made your decision to split up, but there is still unfinished business to be dealt with. Moving your belongings out of the apartment, those awkward conversations with the in-laws who you may never see again. One last kiss with the Ex perhaps? I have mixed emotions about leaving Barcelona. I know in my heart that it is the right decision for me, as every time I speak about the trip a smile spreads across my face and my eyes shine. It is the right time for me to leave my beloved Barcelona behind, although part of me is sad for the future we won’t have together. But never say never. If Barcelona and I are meant to be together, then we will reunite one day – perhaps for one last fling, perhaps for more.

I will never forget you, you crazy, fun, hot, sexy city. I’ve had a blast!

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