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“If you’re twenty-two, physically fit, hungry to learn and be better, I urge you to travel – as far and as widely as possible. Sleep on floors if you have to. Find out how other people live and eat and cook. Learn from them – wherever you go.” – Anthony Bourdain
My name is Anna Coffer and recently I’ve experienced too many memorable things to not write them down. I am a strong believer that when a memory, a moment, is put onto paper, it is solidified and immortalized. What follows is an often convoluted and confusing account of my travels as I get lost countless times on a continent far from home.
My mentality surrounding getting to know a new place is simple. Get as lost as you possibly can and attempt to find your way home. This is how I have accumulated such a knowledge of my neighborhood in Pangrati and how I know how to get back to Syntagma Square from miles away. Simply, I have accepted that there is no possible way that I will know where I am innately, so I am forced to invest time in getting lost.
Everywhere I travel, whether it be Jerusalem or Amsterdam, I must walk. When walking, it is so much easier to notices the small nuances of everyday life that make a city so beautiful and multifaceted. These nuances, a broken down building left to rot in 1930s splendor, or a rare book market tucked away in an alley, serve as clearer lenses for seeing the city for what it is.
Often times, walking does not take you on the fastest route, but it usually takes you on the most interesting route. So enjoy what is to come in my chaotic walking, sometimes running, adventures as I get lost and attempt to find my way home. What follows is a storied tale of sleeping on floors and trains, taking wrong busses and frantic climbing. But, in addition, be prepared for my awestruck ramblings as I continuously wander and wonder.