Gibraltar, here i am


When a window closes another
one opens

T A R I F A, Spain

About the Gibraltar experience...
10 things I've learned so far:

1. It's a solitary experience of self-knowledge. My limits are being tested everyday. Turns out that the cons I so wanted to ignore before coming here (leaving my house, my friends, my family, my job, my country, my life) are harder to deal with than I was expecting. But I don't regret anything. After all getting out of the comfort zone is only for the bravest.

2. You can only rely on yourself and, if you're very lucky, in your mom and some very close friends who'll be there for you no matter where country you go to and for how long.

3. I have to get my shit together by myself and toughen up, sometimes more than once a day. I feel lonely, I cry, I wash my face and then I put my best face and go out there again.

4. I shouldn't get too attached or close to people I know might be leaving before I do, or at all. This is not really a destination, but a stop along the way so people come and go all the time. It's harder on the ones who stay and it can compromise the experience.

5. I shouldn't be counting the days to go back to Portugal but I should make the most of it while i'm here! Time flies when you're having fun but when you check your phone every 10mins no good can come from that, only alienation. I learned that it's more important living it rather than sharing it, so I took measures to control my FOMO (fear of missing out). After all I'm only going to be here for 3 months and I know that somehow I'm going to miss it.

6. Gibraltar is not the best place in the world but it has its attractions. It's strategically placed for you to travel to Spain and Morocco. I've only been here for a month and I already went to Tarifa (several times) and Estepona and I have a trip scheduled to Morocco.

7. People here are very friendly and easygoing. They try to integrate you as much as they can because they know this place is tough and they really want you to enjoy it and stay as much time as possible.

8. When I first came here I thought going back to Portugal was the best for me and being here made me see I might not have enough reasons to come back. The most difficult thing was to leave but after a while I started gaining some perspective. When the worst is gone, you start seeing clearly. Once you start pushing yourself you can only go further and further... and it does get easier with time.

9. It's possible to live for 3 months dressing with only 20kg of clothes for all seasons. It's impressive how I got detached from fashion, personal belongings and material stuff in general. A wise nomad friend I met here told me "when I buy a new piece of clothing, I throw away an old one".

10. Things don't always turn out the way you wanted to but you have to accept it and carry on with your life. I now live one day at a time.

Pini FernandesComment