I met #Mogli in Sri Lanka, after I had left the comfortable and familiar environment of a surfcamp. He left footmarks of love through his courteous and generous nature and had a huge impact on me feeling secure in this foreign country
Sri Lanka welcomed me with amazing stimuli for all my senses. Colorful tuk-tuks, the smell of roasted chickpeas, beautiful palm trees, chlorophyll bombs as far as I could see – and with a tensed feeling in my gut. For the first time after traveling through Southern Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore, it felt strange to me to travel by myself. I felt observed. Not as free as before. I felt safe in the environment of my surf camp and enjoyed the comfort of spending more than one or two nights at the same place. It was not the cheapest option. I thought about staying longer, spending more money than necessary in order to enjoy the routine of the camp.
In retrospective, I’ve noticed, despite the incredibly people I met, one stood out. I made friends with someone really special, her name is Fear. She only wants my best, comes to protect me but also tries to convince me. Here is the good thing about true friendship. Friends don’t get mad when you follow your own mind. Like an unwritten law, you listen and decide, what part of the message you’re going to mix with your saliva, grind and digest and what part you just spit out. Sometimes you choose the polite way and use a napkin. Sometimes, the taste is so bitter, you have to spit it out. I respected Fear’s opinion, appreciated it. Fortunately, I decided against her warm comfort, packed my backpack and moved to a hostel. How should I know what’s best for me if you don’t widen my horizon? I knew I could only stay at the hostel for 2 nights. That’s why Fear suggested to check out some other options already. I overheard a girl talking about a hostel nearby and ungainly joined her conversation. That’s another part I discovered while traveling. This just do it mentality works for everything. You have a question? Just ask! We ended up talking for a while and she painted her directions on a napkin, since the hostel she referred to was still in the process of opening. I was ready for my next adventure. Just me and my napkin, ready to explore. I found the backyard and walked beneath the stone gate overgrown with inviting flower tendrils towards something that looked like an entrance to me. That’s when someone cleared his throat. »Well if you wanna go in, you have to walk the slack line first« said the guy with a flirty smile. He had dark brown eyes, bright white teeth and a Mogli like, curly head. He was wearing slim fitted board shorts and I could see the muscles working, while he elegantly danced on the slack line. I guess I was always a challenge accepted kind of girl, the competitive type. Not even a minute later, I was balancing on the shaky slackline. My golden-black elephant wrapped skirt dancing with me. Or falling. Since I wasn’t a pro – yet.
A few days later, I moved into Mogli’s room. He was one of the most courteous man I’ve ever met. I remember asking him «Are you always like this? So generous and gentle?« He explained to me, that this is part of his culture and, after staying quiet for a few seconds added, that he is not a good man. I guess Fear overheard that part or she knew, that I already decided that he has a good heart. I remember his joyful face, when he announced that he wants to take me for a road trip with some friends. He also wanted to feel safe driving the scooter with another passenger before he allowed me to join him for the adventure. So he drove around to practice. Fear liked that, and I liked it too. He cared.
The four of us cruised through the beautiful landscape. We explored quiet beaches, idyllic villages where children stood on the pathways as we slowly scootered through the tiny curvy paths.
I remember how free I felt. Sitting on the back of the scooter, feeling his warmth on my body and the wind in my hair. When I close my eyes, I still see alleés of palmtrees, and hear the sea breathing.
I see Mogli, and how we smiled at each other through the toney mirror at the steering wheel, singing Boa Sorte – Good Luck. It’s true there are so many special people in the world. And Mogli is one.