02 October 2019
In 2017 my girlfriend of 10 years left me with an SMS. Many reasons brought her to this decision but they included money, where we each lived and worked and more. After she left me I had a tough time accepting it, so I planned to travel the St. Jacobs Way in Spain, but a few months before the trip I broke my foot. Worse still, my injury continued to give me problem just before the trip resulting in intensive therapy for weeks and ongoing medication when I started the trip.
My journey was so hard, I started alone and I didn’t feel like talking with anyone and my foot continued to be painful. Little by little however, I started to get to know many other amazing travellers from all over the world. Each one starting alone for one reason or another and all of whom were looking to find more about life and themselves through their journey. I carried on my pilgrimage despite 3 hospital trips and successfully finished all 980 km in 35 days. The journey taught me the importance of life. That it’s not made up of just money and work and business, but of happiness, liberty and stories from around the world.
When I returned to Italy I struggled to settle as my mind was full of my time travelling and the people that I met.
I decided to travel again, but I didn’t have the money. So I started to sell everything I had - my car, clothes, everything that could raise funds to help me get to my net adventure – a volunteering project in Nepal. After 2 weeks I collected enough money to start the journey to Nepal, promising to come back and see my family again in 2 months. But after 2 months, instead of coming back, I stayed another 3 months in Nepal. I built a house of bamboo for a family in a village and arranged a fundraiser in Italy for local orphanages. Finally it as time to leave and I headed for a new volunteering project in Thailand working in a Gibbon Rehabilitation Centre. After 3 months in Thailand I had completely fallen in love with travelling and went on to visit China, Macao and Hong Kong. My fantastic mum even came out to visit me after a year! Since then, I’ve visited Malaysia, Cambodia, Indonesia, Japan, Singapore so my travel adventure continues..
- Melchiorre Mirko Bennardo