An Open Letter To Backpacker Love

Dear Backpacker,

I may have met you on the couch at that one hostel down the street from the most perfect all-night pizzeria in Budapest. Or it may have been at that all-night boat party in Nice. Honestly, it could have been either.

Or both.

But that’s the beauty of meeting you. It was chance. It was luck. It was kismet. Even if it was just a few hours.

I will never write you letters. I will never give you a “label.” I will never wonder if you like your coffee black or iced or in a strangely complicated confection that shows how much you park it at Starbucks to use the free WI-FI to update your travel blog. I will probably not even add you on Facebook (unless I’m planning on stalking you later. Actually scratch that, I’m definitely adding you on Facebook).

But I may send you a postcard from the next city I go and it might have that nickname I gave you for the night because you couldn’t pronounce “squirrel.” And I’ll remember the night we got the Tiramisu Magnum bar on our way back from dancing in Rome to share and your lips tasted like coffee. And I’ll love reading your blog post about the time you and your friends took a road trip from Canada to Mexico and got lost 13 times because it will remind me of when you said you knew how to get to Shakespeare and Company but you didn’t. And we got really lost too.

Maybe we only had a few hours here, or a few hours there. It’s not much, I know. But you’re ingrained on the memories I have of Sevilla. And Venice. And Stockholm and London and Glasgow and Corinth. In the most innocent ways possible, because we shared an adventure.

Backpacker, don’t worry. Not all loves are the kind that last forever. Sometimes you fall in love with the feeling of a city, and want to share that with someone else. Sometimes you just fall in love with a smile,  or the way someone’s eyes light up when they laugh. Sometimes you fall for the way their hand feels in yours as you drag them to a different stage at the free music festival you both stumbled on by following the river and the sound of techno. It’s just another kind of adventure, isn’t it?

It’s cool, we’re cool. This is the way these things are supposed to be.

And hey, thanks for the memories.

Claire

4 Comments on “An Open Letter To Backpacker Love

  1. Wow. This is so beautiful. Wow. I love the way you write.

    If you’re ever in Bucharest, reach out. I’d love to share stories.

  2. I love that I can’t quite figure out if this is to a certain someone or to all backpackers, and I love that! There’s a lovely flow to your writing. I love your blog.

    • Thank you so much for your kind words Jessica! I loved your post about if it was legal to go to Cuba—telling me no has the very same effect! As to whether my backpacker post is about one person or everyone…it’s my little secret 😉

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