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At the End of a Long Drive

Shreesh and Neena Taskar

We didn't make the decision, the decision made us. On October 20th, 2007, we left our comfortable city of San Francisco to follow a simple algorithm - go North till the road ends then turn around and then go as far South. In between those two points was the stage, the timeline, the space, where we made things happen and things happened to us.

The past is fleeting and the stories, the sights and the feelings are perishable. One sees what one wants to see, and perhaps we are not capable of more. We saw that people are kind and helpful even if they were not materially rich. Some we could understand even though we didn't speak the same language, the motivations of others were incomprehensible even though we did. In the end fragments remain - the smell of roasting chocolate, a flock of snow Ptarmigians on snow, the creaking of the rainforest, the rough feathers of penguins, and the intoxication of Curanto.

So these are our stories. Every time you visit the site you will see a random post below. Each starts with Lo que pasa es que...

Happy in Dawson


Seeking a balance between the new and the old, exploring and keeping the comforts of everyday life.

We seek the new and the unfamiliar. A good friend of ours (A certain Mr. Fredrick Gault) once asked us why we wanted to start teleskiing when we were such good downhill skiers. And as we ski precariously balanced in the tele position, trying to stay away from inept skiers careening downhill on intermediate slopes, I ask myself the same thing.

It is the same reason why, with friends and an established, comfortable life in San Francisco, we are considering the move to another city. And why we put ourselves at a disadvantage among serious outdoor enthusiasts in the wilderness EMT class. We crave the excitement of doing something new and different and the satisfaction that results from having achieved it. These enterprises do not always result in success – my unsuccessful attempt at Aconcagua as an example – but when they do, we are enriched with new experiences. And sometimes whole new cultural worlds open up to us; learning Italian showed us entirely new aspects of food, wine, film, music, books. We could better appreciate Traviata and Turandot, Calvino and Buzzati, Fellini and Antonini.

And yet we will always need a multicultural city to live in – I cannot imagine myself living in the country for an extended period of time, beautiful as it is. We have all of our music with us, we see movies on a portable home theater setup, we seek out gourmet food and wine stores, we stay connected to friends and family over the internet. We take a little bit of our life with us.

We like to experience different cultures but enjoy the comfort of familiar activities. It is this balance of the strange and the familiar that ultimately makes us happy.