"I now know, by an almost fatalistic conformity with the facts,
that my destiny is to travel...."
~ Ernesto Che Guevara, The Motorcycle Diaries
More than 10 years ago, back in middle school, I chose Spanish as my foreign language elective, but never did I imagine I'd actually be putting it to use. Even when I started my travels five years ago, Spanish speaking countries weren't really on my horizon. I'd somehow glossed over everything in the Western Hemisphere and instead set my sights further afield, to Asia.
When I first left home for that "year" of teaching abroad, I did think about world travel, how cool it would be to visit each continent, but that seemed only like a distant dream. Two years later and a handful of countries under my belt I began to realize that dream wasn't so crazy after all.
Eventually I got out of Asia and saw bits of Europe, but that was cut short for another year in Korea, during which I began speaking of the South America trip I'd be taking once done teaching. I even bought a travel guide for Colombia, convincing myself that this trip was going to happen. Once home it only took me 6 days to buy a ticket out of the US, and it just so happened to be a one way to Costa Rica.
I didn't really have a plan after that, I thought about continuing south, through Panama and onwards to Colombia, but then there was a small nagging voice in the back of my head, calling me back to Asia. That, along with the loud nagging voice of my mother (and a few other family members) urging me away from South America - at least not solo.
So for now it's only a sample, one quick month in Costa Rica - probably the most touristy of the region, but still a nice preview. I've learned that my brain has retained some of that old Spanish knowledge, I love rice and beans, and I will be coming back for more.