Travelling and listening

by Evans Yonson

Cagayan de Oro – On my 44th birthday, I was again travelling. I went to Helsinki to meet up with my former teacher, one of the many women that I admire most. It was the first time that I was travelling with her and certainly not the last one.

We had so much catching up to do. Helsinki, an Olympic city, offered a lot of things for us. With the cool winds and autumn colors amidst, the Finnish capital afforded me any my teacher the chance to really talk about our lives in the not-so distant past. Our long walks in the old city made us realize that people and friends form part of our own personal histories.

It was wonderful sharing my future plans with someone who has the same enthusiasm that I have about life and travels. As we walked the cobbled-stone streets of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, we laughed as hard as the rain pouring on our small umbrellas. We never stopped talking even in between our coffee breaks and pasta/pizza lunch. As our cameras endlessly clicked, and so did our conversation about almost anything and even our common friends. We savored our time even up to the last minute as we parted ways at the Helsinki International Airport. I was flying back to Barcelona via Stockholm and she to Istanbul.

In Stockholm, I realized I did most of the talking between Finland and mainland Europe and back. Blame it on the fact that we have not seen each other for the longest time. We have not really sat down and talk. But then again, I should have listened more.

I am just beginning to travel and listen to myself again. Travel and listen to what others have to say. Travel and listen to what nature and culture have to tell me. After all, life is all about travelling and listening.