People ~ The Greatest Gift Of My Journey

by Lena


This was going to be another last post on Marrakech, before my departure to Fes…

But since I hate goodbyes, decided to make this post about the true reason many of us pack our life in a backpack and leave behind our loved ones, security and comforts of home…

It’s the People.

Yes, all those faces and many, many others, have danced their way into my heart.

Let’s be honest here,

I’m not an easy person to deal with, period.

I have faults and demons. I’m human.

Do recognize that I may have hurt some people at one point or another in my life.

Some left… don’t blame them. Some stayed and I’m forever thankful.

But all of them have taught me priceless lessons.

A lot of people ask me why I have the need to pick up and go.

After traveling for years, can say that the main reason would be – to learn how to;

LOVE  more

FORGIVE  always

ACCEPT everyone 

LET GO  when it’s time


* Yes, going for a gorilla trek in Uganda is awe-inspiring, but having child of a total stranger fall asleep in your arms, is so much more!

* Agree, spending a night or more in Sahara is breathtaking and is a priority of many bucket list enthusiasts. However sharing food & laughter with a local nomad woman is even more unforgettable!

* Visiting Marrakech – the best destination of Africa in 2012 was great! But it wouldn’t be the same if I haven’t met Mouna, who invited me to her home to share food with her family and more than once. Her family became my Moroccan family, who’s hearts and door of their home remain open for me.

* Seeing The Big 5 at the Masai Mara National Park ( UNESCO World Heritage site ) was extraordinary! But having a Masai Warrior save me from almost being Lion’s dinner… was, well, honestly, it was an experience I will never forget!

* Yes, jumping out of a perfectly good airplane, in the middle of one the most coldest Russian winters in 50 years, is somewhat insane, but it’s even more crazier to be jumping with a true Legend of the sky and then dancing with him while flying through the clouds.

* Reconnecting with your inner-self in Bali is like being born again, but having local children draw you beautiful drawings for you to take home, is not something you can get at an all-inclusive package deal from a travel agent.

* To walk with lions in the wild, bungee jump into a river full of alligators, get in a fight with a female baboon and hang on the edge of the most dangerous pool in the world, would be adrenaline junkie’s dream come true! But a true highlight for me, was seeing the faces of kids from Lubasi Home and having an intimate moment with a mute woman by the road who sold me bananas.


* To try the Best Tapas at ” TAPEO”  is truly one of the things that one should do when in Barcelona! But becoming friends with the owner and with the whole staff of this amazing place is a totally different story. Because when you have your last dinner there, your eyes fill up with tears.

* To connect with a fellow traveler is great and many people experience this everyday on the road. But to have her leave you a heart, made of your own scarf, that she left as a surprise for you, after you let her use your shower, is not something you can forget.

* To visit The Great Pyramid was my dream, but the Pyramid became even Greater, because I was able to share it with an incredible woman. That day was so much more than just being at one of the 7th wonders of the world.

* To be able to walk in the footprints of the great Paul Bowles and other famous artists in Tangier is inspiring. But to be following those footprints with a famous French writer, whom I met in Marrakech, was a totally different experience. She unveiled a very different side of Tangier to me, the hidden side, the one, not every traveler gets to see. She even introduced me to a Russian lady, Elena, who happens to be a relative of one the Russian Empire Noble Families.

* To see The Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco is truly an incredible sight. But to dance in the local musicians drum circle, in the middle of the street and having homeless people laugh with you, is one of those moments that come to my mind when I remember
that great city.

* Zanzibar has to be my favorite Island in the whole world. It’s rich with history, beautiful architecture, has the most wild, unspoiled beaches and heart-stopping sunsets. But the story of me trying to persuade a bank manager on a Sunday morning, to get my “eaten” card back, is classic!  Or showing my guide something even he has never seen in Stone Town, in all the years he worked as a guide… the look on his face was priceless.

* Being in one of the most bizarre and truly mesmerizing restaurants in Chefchaouen, Morocco, that has artworks everywhere, which are not for sale, is a one-of-a-kind experience. But to have the owner who spend 9 years in India, get so inspired by you, that he draws several drawings and gives them to you as a gift, is truly humbling. His drawings I will treasure for as long as I live.


I could go on and on about all those people and all those moments.
Journey is about the People you meet and the moments you get to share with them.

If you have the courage to open your heart to this world and run towards life with your soul wide open, there’s a chance that you will get wounded. But if you don’t give life that chance, you will never truly fly.


Yes, I have had bad things happen to me because of people, we all have those stories.
But the reality is, that the number of people who want to lift you up, is much greater than the ones who want to watch you fall.


I want to thank each and one of you who come to my “online home”. You have lifted me up in more ways than one.

I feel stronger, because I have such an amazing team, who always have my back!
Some of your comments made me cry, others made me laugh to the point of tears.

But all of your comments and wishes made me feel loved.


And isn’t that what we all truly want?

Is this not the reason we strap on a backpack and dive into the unknown?


I want to thank every single person who has entered my life, good or bad.

Thank you for teaching me how to dance & never touch the ground.




If you want to hear the truth ~ Listen to your heart.

If you want to fly ~ Don’t be afraid to break your wings.

If you want to forgive ~ Ask for forgiveness.

If you want to be a good dancer ~ Dance with your soul, not your feet.

If you want to get to the top ~ You have to touch the bottom.

If you want to be free ~ Don’t lie to yourself.

If you want to heal ~ Cry, Laugh, Breath & Let go.

If you want to be rich ~ Help someone.

If you want to find You ~ Get lost.

If you want to learn ~ Change.

If you want to feel loved ~ Love.

If you want to be happy ~ Be.

02/07/2013 © Elena Levon


Marrakech Sunset

Marrakech Sunset


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