18.10

It is not random that I copy my texts on my blog. I didn’t want to do something too ordinary, where I only expose what I do every day in a superficial way. I wanted to show that travelling happens also inside and that my thoughts and emotions are as important as my actions. I also wanted to speak about those things, those joys and sorrows that we all experience but of which no one ever speaks openly, because it would be showing your vulnerability, because it would be weak. Because those topics are better kept to yourself. We keep everything inside and wear our prettiest smile every day. Even more on social media, on the internet. But I didn’t want that, I wanted to show that even if yes, my life is special and I am incredibly lucky to be able to live these adventures, it doesn’t come without its share of solitude, of questionings, of emotional ups and downs. Just like in ‘real’ life. That’s it, I wanted to show something real. I receive a lot of interesting reactions in private, I am sometimes told that I am crazy, often that I am brave, sometimes I make people laugh, others I touch you, I think. I simply try to be myself, to be real. There, I simply wanted to explain why I spill my insides so much sometimes, because I know I regularly surprise more than one.
And behind a screen, it’s easier…

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We thus arrive in this very special place, the temple of Hwaeomsa, that guards the secrets of a long history. We are immerged in a completely different world, ideal for introspection and inner peace.qui garde les secrets d’une longue histoire. Nous voilà immergés dans un monde complètement différent, propice à l’introspection et au calme intérieur.

We share our daily life with the monks. Our timetables are unusual (we wake up and have breakfast before the sun rises), we go to several ceremonies, meditate. There is a whole lot of details that make this experience something very special; the way we have to greet the monks everytime we cross their paths, to move around with our hands joined together, calmly, the fact that we don’t speak, while eating, to honour the food that is offered to us, and many more. Time seems to stop, the calm is setting in. In a few days, I turn inwards, contemplate my life, where it brought me, where I am. I write a lot.

20.10

To travel with someone else, in a way, confronts me more to myself. Maybe it’s because of our conversations, maybe it’s because we are day and night together. It’s not that easy in any case, that’s for sure. But it’s enriching; I believe it makes you a bit more patient, more tolerant, when it doesn’t have the contrary effect; you can’t do it with anybody, obviously. It’s a bit complicated too, because with the lives we chose, us ‘backpackers’, we know that nothing is meant to last. That at the end of the day, of the week, the month, we will be alone once more. We therefore want to enjoy each moment with the other person but at the same time, we fear getting attached because we know that it won’t last and that it can hurt. I don’t really know where to fix my marks; I would want them all inside of me so that it could be the only place where I could rest, but it would be the choice of a very, very lonely life. So, you have to take risks, dare to open up, even for just an instant, to this stranger that offers a temporary shoulder.
Before being travellers, we are simply human beings.

 

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This insect oddly resembles a Buddha head, or is it me who spent too much time in a temple?!

We have a lot of free time, and I enjoy it to explore the surroundings, also.

And slackline!! I have one with me now 🙂

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Okay, it’s been a long time, I need to refresh my skills !

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We have the incredible chance to share a cup of tea with the monk who’s in charge of the place, she gives us precious advice to meditate and apprehen life with serenity. She explains to us that the life she used to lead never fulfilled her the way this one does, that neither men nor material things, her had ever made her happy the way she is now.
We spend five more days in their company, and this allows us to get to know the monks in their free time too; we see them play football with the kids, chatting, laughing. They all exude so much energy.

24.10

Smiles. Everywhere, all around me. Smiles from the monks, from the people working here, from the other residents of the temple or the visitors of one day. It is already my fourth day here, in Hwaeomsa, Budhhist Korean temple that is 1500 years old. There is a quiet, serene and intimate atmosphere here, as if the moment you enter this place, you’re transported to another world. I savour these moments filled with calm and spirituality, surrounded by this magnificent setting. Meals are taken in silence, having in mind the gratitude of being able to eat healthy, vegetarian meals. At night, we assist to a beautiful ceremony, the one of several monks who rotate the banging of a huge drum with some sticks, as well as three other traditional percussion instruments, with an impressive rythm and dexterity. Right after, we go to the temple in order to meditate while listening to the chants of monks. The same ritual starts again, early in the morning, around 3.30. Sometimes, I enter some kind of transe, it’s impressive. Days are calm and ideal for reflexion. Many burried things are coming out, but I am in a good environment to face my demons. Meditation is a saving power. In the temples, I feel connected to something bigger, and closer to myself at the same time. I remember my promise, the one I did to myself a few months earlier, to always choose the good, whatever happens. My ego is fighting but I will always hang in there. And then, I must neve forget the incredible luck that brought me here. In the present moment, the only one that truly exists, the only one that counts. I still have many things to learn from the teachings of life.
Fortunately, because mine is just starting.

 

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