I’m in my tent. Camping at a wonderful place next to a church in the middle of a forest. There are picnic tables, there’s water and a lot of grass. In two months there will be a guesthouse as well, but for now that building is an unfinished building. They’re working on it though. I met the guys in charge earlier, they gave me permission to put up my tent here.

Continue Reading "Worst night ever"

Dobro jutro! While kneeled down in front of my guest bed rummaging through my bag I suddenly feel two small arms around my shoulders and a small body pressed against my back. The eight-year-old girl whose room I’m sharing this week, has come to hug me good morning and disappears as suddenly as she came in.

When I’m left alone in the room after the hug, I feel my heart pounding, my stomach fluttering and my eyes water. Soon tears stream down my cheeks. A liquid smile through every fibre of my body. And at the same time pain, a subdued haze that I could call sadness. It is something that is hard to explain, but for me maybe the most valuable feeling there is. Experiencing extremes, let it wash over you, influence each other and reinforce. Connecting.

I’m staying at a young couple’s house in Sarajevo. For a few of days I am a part of their lives and they are a part of mine. At first their daughter looked at me with suspicion when she saw my bags next to her bed. A stranger speaking a different language and sleeping in her bed, she didn’t seem to know what to make of that.

Continue Reading "Princess of the Mountains"

After a night on an airplane, a transfer and another flight I arrived at Sarajevo airport mid morning. As forecasted it was a rainy day with low clouds so I did not see any mountains. Somewhat disappointed and tired from travelling I tried to figure out my next move, but before I could worry about where to go next I saw a girl with a sign reading: “ Eva Smeele Via Dinarica.” Smiling I went over and introduced myself.

Continue Reading "Between Two Worlds"

Good morning!

I just received an email from Alastair Humphreys, currently one of my great heroes. He is an extraordinary adventurer, author of nine books and motivational speaker, but besides that, I see him as a passionate man who is sending a message straight from and to the heart. That’s why he is a huge inspiration for me.

A few weeks ago, I signed up for his newsletter and today he finally wrote one.

Continue Reading "Thoughts on Adventures"
Trainen op de dijk | Van marathon naar burn-out

After having fiddled around on bare feet and borrowed FiveFingers, I thought it was time to participate in a ‘small run’. With the 100 days programme of Sportrusten, Ruth Langemeijer has helped me to arrange a training schedule for the half marathon. I have learned not only to run in a new way, but also to breathe in a new way. An ideal combination, as it turned out, to train and monitor my body. I was making progress, I was doing great! Former running injuries kept quiet, and I finished easily. Finally I understood what runners meant when they say ‘I can still run for hours‘.

Continue Reading "From marathon to burn-out"
What_do_you_believe_in?

A couple of years ago, a nice guy asked me at our date what I dream of. Whether I had dreams and what those were. I took it too literally, so I told him that I had a lot of dreams. “I dream pretty much always,” I said. He asked me to give an example, so I did. “One of the dreams I am having since I was a little girl, is that I am being followed by a dinosaur. By now, I can run a lot faster, but even more importantly, I can call myself to order. I can remind myself that dinosaurs have been extinct for a while already, and the chance is very low that I will find such a hungry, prehistorical creature chasing me to eat me. In my sleep I realize that it’s just a dream. But the annoying thing is, that my dream doesn’t bother. On the moment that I decide to stand still, the dinosaur keeps running and bites me in my arm. And then I wake up.”

Continue Reading "What do you believe in?"