The Things We Carry

We carry too many things to travel light.

Our fifty pound pounds bag are full of toothpaste, shampoo, medication, books, binders, paper, pens, moleskines, cameras, photographs, underwear, jackets, spotify playlists, kindles, books, library cards, water bottles, evil eyes, duct tape, art projects, biology notes, and BS. We don’t need half the things that we carry, but we cling to the familiarity of ‘home’ in the hotel rooms, dorm rooms, and halloween costumes as we set up camp for the umpteeth time in the past four years of our lives.

We carry youth, teenage angst, anger and love.

We carry more identities than nationalities. We carry more technology than socks. We carry more hope than Hans Rosling’s statistics do. We carry more hugs than tears. We carry the burdens and blessings of memories, lessons, and too many alfajores.

We carry too many things to travel heavy.

We carry stories. Happy stories like when we ran through the streets of Nacka with spoons as our swords and ‘The System’ as our opponent. We floated through the streets like a Jake jumps over a hopscotch – with a little too much forward momentum and the fearlessness to jump again (and again). Hard stories like when we trudged through the mountains of Monteverde screaming out against the confinement, the lack of control, and the constipation. Hilarious stories like when a Yodsel flew through the air like the bat in our bathroom at Indus, to take out a Fatima on a raft in Costa Rican whitewater.

We carry so much responsibility, our heads and hands are strong from holding ourselves together.

Our endurance to carry all of these things is so tested that our lungs feels as if they are collapsing simply from an email notification about our ToDos on spot; however, we know that our lungs are not collapsing. The only thing collapsing is our bodies as we fall onto cool, foreign, overwashed, almost-white sheets. As we breathe in the cheap detergent, we let our ugly-as hiking bags sink deep into our backs. We carry hiking boots that we never use, a flashlight that looks like a baton, and too many bug bites for the amount of bug sprays we brought.

We carry the ability to handle what is handed to us.

We carry things for the rough roads and smooth sailings. We carry snacks for when our tummies ache for its love (food), advil for (really) all the time, and floss for cleaning our mouth of the crap that comes out and into it. We carry so much love it is unknown just how much we carry – the only answerable question is what form it takes: passion, punches, lunches, laughs, photographs, pancakes, headaches, hugs, pugs, prancing, dancing.

We carry our lives traveling: through people, places, and purposes.

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