After Mexico, I have no photos of my own. I left my laptop and camera, I decided to travel light. The van met its end down the steep mountains of Orizaba, In Central Mexico. The brakes went out and I had a side collision with a tree and nearly with a bus as well. I decided not to repair it. I sold my potions and herbs, reduced my clothing, and put everything into one backpack.
I started working with jewelry after meeting local Artisans in Mexico. Them called themselves “La banda”. Traveling musicians, artists, and fire spinners free from worldly cares. “Can you sing, can you dace, what can you do?” They teased me. In this crowd educational background and Cvs were irrelvalant. What you can do made who you are. Full of character and an education from the streets they were tough and extremely interesting. I joined them and got a set of fire poi’s.
I hitchhiked to San Cristobal, Chiapas. In the bed of several pickups we climbed the mountains of Southern Mexico. The culture of the local people was authentic, the hand weaved textiles, the local leather craft. The mountain air was crisp. I stayed for a while. Time was obsolete. Days of the week, hours of the day, all insignificant details no one seemed to concern themselves with.
I continued south, to the colonial town of Antiqua, Guatemala. There is a famous store for gemstones that all of the artisans knew about. A crossroads of gems from North and South America. They stocked strings in a rainbow of hues. I loaded my bag with supplies and continued.
In El Salvador I got a ride to the coast. The driver tried to convince me hitching was no a good idea for females alone. “Everyone has guns here, ” he warned me. Several rides were accompanied by a pistol or shotgun in the vehicle. But luckily i had no trouble.
Honduras, Nicaragua, the Island of Roatan, to Costa Rica. In Nicaragua I stayed at a small village on the coast. Ive never seen such beautiful stones, glittering golden, jade, and turquoise all washed up upon the beach. I collected them and polished them by hand with sandpaper for my new jewelry pieces.
In the tropics the season never changes. Only rainy or dry. Otherwise you can forget the month as well. In Costa Rica I traded a bracelet for the first marks on my face, the dots upon my temples. I saw these symbols when I was in Papua. It was common of locals.
My dream to return to China was always lingering in the back of my mind. I didn’t want to take a plane. I had travelled all of this distance by land, from central United States to Costa Rica. I was determined to make the rest of the journey also by foot. The Atlantic was an obstacle. I found a flight to Brussels.
I decided to hitchhike from Belgium to China.