Day 421: Popayán

Popayán is known as the white town of the southern region of Colombia. It’s beautiful and quiet, even amidst protestors circling around the main square on our way to get some breakfast. Now that we’re officially in our last country of our trip, we’re starting to feel the effects of our trip coming to an end. It’s exciting and scary and nerve wracking and relieving and overwhelming all at the same time. I’m excited to see loved ones again, but I’m terrified at the thought of returning stateside. At the beginning of this trip, we would tell people we were traveling for 15 months but I’m not sure we actually believed it ourselves. Then living out of a backpack became normal. Visiting Angkor Wat or the Taj Mahal or Petra seems like an ordinary Monday. Meeting friends in foreign cities felt special. Jumping on a bus for 12 (or more) hours seemed like the obvious choice to get from A to B. I’m used to not speaking the local language. I can’t help but eves-drop when I hear a conversation in English because it’s that much harder to equate as background noise. I can’t seem to buy anything without first converting the currency. At this point, I think that my (our) “normal” is probably pretty opposite what is considered “normal” in America. And now I’m supposed to go back? It’s strange. It’s weird. It’s not “normal.” At least to us. And today was one of the first days that it was hitting us.

We walked around the city, bought some strawberries off the street, tried to check out some churches (but they were all closed) and then once it started to rain again, we ducked back indoors for the rest of the afternoon.