Sunday, August 12, 6:18am air time, somewhere over northern Brazil
I land in an hour. The sun is coming in through the window, and my mind is on someone who used to call me pathetic.
I could only assume it started out as a joke, but as time went on it stopped being funny. It was never funny, if I’m being honest.
He was the first person I told I wanted to be a serious writer, and with that came a pressure that I’m sure was one-sided. Every time I saw him, I felt like I was in the same place, whereas he was always on to the next job, next adventure, next accomplishment.
If I wanted to be a real writer, I needed to leave home for a while. I need experience. I can’t just keep waiting.
Those are the things he’d tell me. Then I’d make an excuse and he’d roll his eyes and call me pathetic. .
Why Brazil? Because he found himself there when he was younger, so maybe I could do the same.
But now I’m on a plane feeling slightly pathetic and more than slightly terrified. There’s people everywhere speaking a language I don’t know. My friends and family are an 18 hour flight away. There is a girl waiting for me who I doubt can understand me, a huge city I’ve only heard of filled with 19 million people, a whole different world.