I hope you’re having a fantastic start to your week.
As I’m writing this post, I have been traveling and living out of my (oversized) suitcase for the past 52 days, a little over 7 weeks.
I’m in my 5th country in that time span (Guatemala, US, Canada, Portugal, and now Cape Verde) and it seems I’ve had more travel accommodation mishaps this go ‘round than on any other trip I’ve taken.
When I got to Algarve in the southern part of Portugal, it was a quente 35 degrees Celsius/95 degrees Fahrenheit. It was hot AF!
The first place I stayed in had air conditioning, but the poor little machine couldn’t work hard enough to cool the place down. I had many hot sleepless nights, unable to rest and relax until 5 or 5:30 in the morning. Oh and this place had no WIFI.
I was surprised, but embraced it since I needed (and still need) the rest and relaxation.
I chalked it up as a “cute” beginning of my European adventure.
The next place I moved to in Portimão was gorgeous and had WIFI…but no air conditioning! I had no idea a lot of places in Europe weren’t equipped with a/c and I wasn’t ready for this kind of plot twist! Not with the sun still sunning at 35 degrees!
But I pulled it together (complaining the entire time to anybody who would listen, I hear complaining is therapeutic) and opened all the windows once the sun went down to create a cross breeze. Once the air started moving, it was actually really pleasant.
Crisis averted, mostly. It was still one of the hottest weeks with no a/c I’ve experienced in my life, but hey, I’m here writing to you about it, so I’m a survivor!
There were a few other situations in between like an elevator stopping between floors and being required to drag my suitcase up a flight of stairs to get to my room. Why have an elevator if you still have to use stairs after the elevator???
Lifts, as they’re called in Europe, are not par for the course like they are in the US and I also had to drag my bag up 4 flights of stairs in my next place, but at least I was rewarded with entering my flat (my penthouse flat) to find that both the air conditioning and the WIFI were in supreme working order. Hallelujah!
Now I’m in Sal, Cape Verde. It’s also hot here and the humidity makes saunas absolutely unnecessary. I just look outside and start sweating. Goodbye toxins, hello SPF 5000 sunscreen.
I moved into a really cute place that has an upstairs and a downstairs and after I got settled in and turned on the a/c, I started hearing this rhythmic sound in the background, a soft drip, drip, drip. Turns out it was water cascading off the cooling machine and landing on the wooden stairs below. Oh no! I don’t think dripping means good things are about to happen.
Eventually I turned around and realized that the temperature was stuck at 28 degrees, which is about 82 degrees Fahrenheit. I could only get it to drop down to 26 and then 2 minutes later it’d be back up to 28. Needless to say, I was hot and unimpressed.
Ok, ok, fine. It’s almost time to go to bed, the sun is going down, this place should cool off. Plus, I found a fan, so if I point it directly at me while I’m sleeping, I should be ok, right? Sure.
But before I got in bed, I decided to get on my computer. I was typing away, looking up plane tickets and planning out my next few months when suddenly I lost connection. The internet decided to retire and hasn’t been back to work consistently since last night!
Ok universe, I see you. I’m just going to go ahead and humble myself and get some warm sleep.
Let me go lay down and think back over all the energy and vibes I’ve put into the universe to see if I can pinpoint what I did or didn’t do to have no a/c and no internet.
I actually slept pretty well considering the lack of cool air. I woke up ready to eat, ready to start writing, and ready to plan my excursions for the week I’m here.
And guess what…no water! Apparently there’s water in the tank for the building, but it’s not moving up to the rooms. No water to flush the toilet, wash my hands, brush my teeth, or wash any dishes. No water!
At this point, I just had to laugh. It’s like a comedy of errors. I don’t want to ask “what else could go wrong,” because something else definitely can, but I figured if I can survive no air, no internet, and (hopefully just) a morning with no water, I can get through a lot of things in life.
Even as I’m recounting the story to you now, I feel like all of this is trivial. Like I shouldn’t be complaining (and I’m not really complaining, just telling you an entertaining story) because there are so many more important things to worry about.
I’m feeling inconvenienced, but not too uncomfortable.
I know you’re thinking, Asha, cute story, what’s your point?
Things happen! Life happens and not always according to plan.
We can’t control the things that happen, but we can control our response to life happening.
I could be totally upset, fussing and fighting, getting worked up and raising my blood pressure. But why? What’s the point?
Instead I decided to leave the house a little earlier and found a fantastic spot to have breakfast and relax with a fantastic soundtrack playing in the background. If you ever find yourself in Sal, Cape Verde, check out Ocean Cabo Verde. It’s a vibe.
I read somewhere last week that we often let one bad moment in our day determine whether we consider the entire day to be good or bad.
With all the things that go right everyday, how dare we give the things that don’t go according to plan that much power over us.
We have so much control, but if we focus it on the wrong things we’ll always feel totally out of control.
So focus on you, how you respond, on creating the mood and vibe that you want for your life.
You really can just go with the flow.