2020 was certainly a trip.
So I decided to make this blog post which also will be a photobook to remind me of how life can be.
It was a year of change, it made me believe that things will happen and we have to accept them no matter how bad or good they are.
It all started with a decision, a move, a hope for a better future.
From Porto, Portugal
To Berlin, Germany
A somewhat spontaneous and wild decision right at the beginning of the year. A decision full of dreams, hopes, stress, anxiety and right on fears.
This city has an attitude of its own and that's what's attractive about it.
Berlin is a combo of a lot of vibrant culture, tangible history, good food, nightlife that never ends, incredible architecture and intense people with a unique lifestyle.
It's a big multicultural metropolis but deep down it maintains the unpretentious charm of an international village. It is a big city but its key areas are wonderfully compact and easily navigated on foot, by bike or with public transport. So you should explore as much as you can and I assure you, you'll get mesmerized by it.
Berlin is like an endlessly fascinating 3D textbook where the past is very much present wherever you go.
And when it comes to creativity and art scene, the sky's the limit in Berlin. If you are an artistic person, this is the city for you.
I now had the opportunity to explore a city I was been in love with for the past several years all alone and this time with no ticking clock, with no return plane ticket booked for the next days in my Ryanair app. This was it. This is what I wanted.
I met new people, I reconnected with some old friends and I created a bigger bond with a special person.
A few quick stops at Munich also helped.
Strangely my anxious and stressed mind was at peace even though I had so much bureaucracy stuff to deal with.
I needed a roof, I needed a job, I needed a life.
But I was at the right place. Even though a few weeks later I found out I was at the wrong moment.
2020 was hit with Covid-19.
It was the wrong moment. The right place at the wrong moment.
It made all more difficult than it was already and sadly it came to the point that broke me and I felt defeated. I wanted to stay and start anew in Berlin so bad but I wasn't strong enough to make it happen with all the panic happening. I absolutely hate it to use this pandemic as an excuse but it didn't help the move.
I want to believe it was a sign, as stupid as it sounds, and this was a sick way to make me realize it wasn't the right moment.
So at the middle of the year it was time to go back to Porto.
Now I was back to zero again.
Feeling depressed it was difficult to think of positive outcomes from the previous months, but deep down I knew I couldn't just give up.
I will try soon again.
I left the house very few times and almost any work I did was behind closed doors.
I also caught the virus so that was an experience for sure. One to tell another time.
I had some time to spare when it came to celebrate 2 years with this beauty though.
Sometimes I forget to thank her for putting up with me and my senseless and sometimes foolish way of living.
And for being my subject for photos most of the times when she's not feeling it
And I couldn't handle being at home stuck much more time so it was time to pack my backpack.
I spent 5 days around this mountain range called Picos da Europa, from village to village the experience just got better and better and I can tell you that this national park now is my favorite spot in all of Spain.
It's full of picturesque views, mountains that just don't stop appearing in the horizon, lakes, rivers, vibrant nature and of course, trails that make you want to get lost in all of it.
I was dreaming about coming back to nature and mountains for years at this point and finally I made it happen.
Escaping the monotony I was feeling I took the train to Lisbon to meet up with a full group of strangers. All unknown to each other with separate motives for coming together but at the same time all in it together with the same mindset.
Set on the adventure.
And what an adventure it was.
Day by day all these strangers became friends with life stories being told, dumb and fun moments being shared.
It was a perfect combo for road tripping and a very pleasant surprise for me.
Apart of the social expect of this adventure, this was definitely also a personal escape for me.
After the year I had so far my mental health was slowly destroying it self and I needed this break. Something about being thousands of meters up in the air sitting on top of mountains made me realize so much that I needed.
I felt lighter, I felt more free, I felt detached from the world.
It was once more what I needed. A little step forward from the so many accidentally step backs I took at the beginning of the year.
I need to take more steps like this. More steps into connecting with nature and people.
And that's a personal note for me.
Now after an amazing break from society I figured I would go visit one of my best friends living now in my second favorite spot in Spain.
It was my 3rd time now visiting this city and there is something special about it.
My friend is living here and successfully did what I wanted to do at the beginning of the year it also gave me some hope for the future.
And now I could feel more of this city's insides and outs exploring it with someone who appreciates it so much.