Traveling has always been something that I turned to in time of need. I always felt a sense of tranquility at the airport watching each person glide past my horizon of sight. Sitting down in that overused airline seat that had the feel of your grandmother’s oldest, stiffest, upholstered chair somehow felt inviting to me. It was a discomfort that became comforting. The only way I can think of to explain it is by relating it to running… Yes, running. When you first begin a regimen of daily running, your body starts to rebel against this new mobile activity. The next day your muscles ache and the farthest thing from your mind is to don your running shoes once again to go for a jog. But, once you have developed your routine, you crave the soreness. Just a little soreness, not the debilitating kind. A little soreness to let you savor the progress you are making. This is the way I felt about an airline seat. It is crazy, I know, but we all have an oddity that comforts our soul.
However, this trip was different. I reclined in seat number 23E and my anxiety was still there. I popped on my earbuds to play a few electronic lounge hits in order to drown out this annoyance. The trick had no success. I was on my way to Sao Paulo, Brasil to meet a girl I had met online almost a year ago. When I bought the ticket I had no worries whatsoever. But, once again, being in the face of fire the anxiety rolled back in. The whole flight was uneventful… Movie, water, soda, food, bathroom, movie, game, book, food,water… Suddenly, I felt the plane make its descent and the intercom chirped on with the pilot requesting for everyone to secure their tray tables, fasten their seat belts, and prepare for landing. The adrenaline started pumping through my body and I began to rehearse a few lines of dialogue in my head to amuse the girl when I was face to face with her for the first time. I started walking towards customs and saw a long line. Relief flowed over me. I had bought myself 30 more minutes. I felt like a kid trying to work up the courage to ask a girl in his class to dance at the first dance of the year. As soon as I emerged from the security gate, I saw one of the most beautiful girls I have ever laid eyes on. She had a green dress, tan skin, long dark hair, and the widest smile. I felt comfortable in a matter of seconds as she grabbed my hand to direct us to a small restaurant in the airport.
I have always been enthralled with exploring different nooks and spots in a variety of cities all over the globe where I feel like I have truly discovered tranquility. International travel has always taken me to places of discovery but, she is the most incredible find of all my discoveries. It took one year for us to meet, but it was worth every month, day, hour, minute, second that I had waited. We traveled together for 10 days through her city of São Paulo and ventured over to Guarujá to swim in the ocean.
I visited her again during Easter. She visited me in the summer and again during Christmas. I recently returned to be with her during Carnaval in São Paulo. Looking back over the past two years it seems as if everything has gone so smoothly. Yes, in the beginning it was very hard to pursue a long distance relationship such as this one. But when you find love, everything seems possible. We are now engaged and looking forward to being together forever. Travel helped me find the love of my life.