jeudi 28 février 2008

Rite of passage...

Après avoir terminé "Les Fourmis", j'avais plus de livre en stock pour le reste du voyage. J'étais donc allé faire un tour dans une librairie à Sydney à la recherche de nouvelles lectures. Les deux livres que je cherchais n'étant plus en stock, j'allais faire un tour dans la section "Voyages" et je tombais sur ce livre, édité par Lonely Planet : "Rite of Passage. Tales of Backpacking 'Round Europe" qui est un recueil de courtes histoires écrites par des backpackers ayant voyagé en Europe. J'ai pris goût assez vite à ce livre dans lequel on retrouve souvent des moments de vie caractéristiques de la vie du backpacker et qui pourra aussi vous permettre un peu de comprendre ce que l'on ressent. C'était également par la même occasion le premier livre que je lisais en Anglais.

J'ai choisi quelques passages d'une histoire écrite par John Morgan pour vous montrer à quoi ca ressemble. Ca fera du bien à ce qui ne parlent pas bien Anglais, un bon exercice pour ceux qui révisent le BAC (hein Cyrill !) et une formalité pour les autres.

"I'm breathing with a light and free feeling as I disembark my plane. It's a feeling of release and independence as I begin my European journey. Backpacking somehow sets me apart from everyone. Even in this airport. True, people here are traveling, but they each have things to do, deadlines to meet, particular people to visit, itinaries to follow, specific things to see. Not me, I'm different. I have everywhere to go and anything to see. My destination is culture and knowledge and experience. Although I'm traveling amongst scores of others, I am different."

"It's a fun feeling, knowing I'm carrying everything I need to survive in one small bag."

"I think about how truly immense our world is. It boggles my mind that so many millions of people in so many millions of places all over the world have their own lives, their own circle of friends, their own homes. This place, so foreign to me, is home to so many people. I begin to think about how everything that makes one place or people foreign to another, is the result of our own creations: language, culture, government, religion. At the very heart, we are all humans and we all basically live life the same way. We always have and we always will. The only force that separates us and, ironically, brings us together, is our minds.
As I walk the streets of Rome this evening, I feel like I'm fighting a battle against human separation. By trying to see and learn I am making one more place in this world less foreign to me, and myself less foreign to the world.
At this thought, a sudden rush of excitement about the weeks to come sends chills down my spine."

"Back at the hostel, I prepare for my first hang-out-and-meet-people-in-the-common-area session of this trip. I've got my guidebook handy, so I can look occupied as I scope out the situation."

"2:12 a.m. I'm woken up by the loud Dutch guy storming back into the hostel after hitting the pubs. "WHO VANTS TO PAHTEEEEEE?" I put my headphones back on and start the CD over.
3:40 a.m. I'm woken by snoring. At first I'm amused by the differing frequencies of the two snorers, causing the snores to go in and out in time with each other, but I quickly become annoyed. I jam the headphones deeper into my ears and replay the CD.
5:20 a.m. Awoken by a fellow traveler who has decided to wait until the morning to pack. Why is it that people who pack in the morning always seem to have noisy paper or plastic bags to mess around with? Every zipper zipped and every clip clipped is loud and painful. His meek attempt to dull the pain by moving ever so slowly does nothing but prolong the torture. I chuckle to myself while driving my headphones deeper into my cranium. I know I'm guilty of making the same early morning racket from time to time.
6:36 a.m. The sun blasts through the shutters on the hostel window. It becomes obvious that my bunk was the last choice for a reason. Even with my eyes closed, the early morning sun blinds me. It's not worth fighting it anymore. I'll catch up on sleep tomorrow. I hop down with surprising energy, my bare feet slapping the cold hostel floor. I slide on sandals and grab my toiletries and travel towel.

The one bonus of rising early is clean showers. It takes me a few minutes to work the strange lock on the shower door and to balance my clothes, towel and gear on the seat-level shelf in the shower. I wonder if anyone ever actually sits on this thing. Who sits down in the shower? One I completed the balancing act, I turn to my next assignment. I'm facing three knobs with no labels. I figure I have a one-third chance of getting scalded with hot water, a one-third chance of getting blasted with ice-cold water and one-third chance of getting it right. I stand close to the wall, attempting to miss spray. COLD COLD! I frantically turn the other knob... HOT HOT DAMN HOT! Turning the cold knob all the way does nothing; it can't overpower the practically boiling water. I'm quickly surrounded by a warm fog and nearly become disoriented, but I finally find that turning the hot knob nearly all the way off solves my problem.
I make my way through cleaning quickly, unsure of how long a hot shower will last here. I'm not surprised that my towel and clothes are wet: it's near impossible to find a dry spot in hostel showers. I dry myself with my damp towel and put on my wet clothes. I imagine that as I travel from town to town and stay in new places every couple of nights, small things like this will affect the smoothness of normal activities. As soon as I get handle on the shower here, I'll move on and face the same challenge at another hostel. I don't think I could ever measure the number of factors that make a constant environment comfortable."

Ma lecture du moment est maintenant "The Beach" de Alex Garland qui a été porté à l'écran sous le même nom pour un film culte. C'est l'histoire d'un backpacker en Thailande...

2 commentaires:

Cyrill a dit…

Eh ben, j'espère que ça ne va pas etre ce texte au BAC... C'est un peu dur pour mon niveau d'anglais.

Vince a dit…

Au moins ca t'aura fait un exercice ! J'espere que tu as compris l'essentiel !
Maintenant que je comprends bien l'Anglais, j'ai oublié que j'étais aussi comme toi au meme age et avait du mal a comprendre un texte qui est en fait pas bien si compliqué... ;)