Friday morning I had intended to get my massage. But, as I lugged my bag up the rolling coastal hills in Hvar to the spa, the crystal water called to me. Just one last swim in Hvar. You know you want to.

Instead of just gazing at the sun dancing in the water my last morning on the island, I decided to do a 180, and head back to the pebble beach where Shaun was.

Of course, being the impatient person I am, I ducked into a restroom at a restaurant to do a quick change into my suit, not paying a lick of  attention to the fact there was a door in the room where I changed. So, mid-change, a man walked through the door, looked at me strangely as I stood there, half in a bathing suit, half in a dress, and exited. Classy? You bet.

I did my best not to make eye contact with my bathroom buddy as I clumsily hauled my bag out of the restaurant, dodging chairs and tables and looks.

When I met Shaun down at the beach, she gave me a confused look.

“I just couldn’t do it,” I explained. “I would rather stay here with you and enjoy the last morning on the island then get a massage.”

She and I took in the late morning rays for about an hour. Then, as we were sitting there, laughing and exchanging stories of our last night out in Hvar — the topless woman from Hula Hula had made an appearance  (clothed) much to the boys pleasure, and Chopper had decided he was coming with me to Dubrovnik — when a girl wandering along the path just above us caught my eye.

Her brown hair and sunglasses looked familiar. Could it be …

“Amy??” I called out.

The girl stopped in her tracks and looked down at us.

“D?” She said, jumping off the path and coming to join us.

It was like being reunited with a long-lost friend, seeing Amy days later in Hvar. I couldn’t even convey how much had happened in those five days since we parted. There was nowhere to start to accurately convey the experiences I had, and there was no way I could cram anything into a conversation before I caught the ferry back to Split to take the bus to Dubrovnik in an hour.

Instead, we all went to get lunch.

Only a short time later, Mel, Shaun, Amy and I stood at the dock, people getting on the catamaran to head back to Split. I didn’t want to continue to Dubrovnik. In the short time I had been with these people, they had become like a family. I know I’ve said it before, but you really do make friends fast and furious when you travel, and these girls were no exception to that rule. And, as it goes with traveling, you move on, keep in touch with those that matter, and meet new and wonderful people at your next destination.

Still, it was really hard to say goodbye. Chopper put it best — when you travel, most of the time when you say goodbye, its . The likelihood of ever seeing these people again is slim. And, knowing that made my heart hurt a little bit.

We all hugged, promised to keep in touch, and when my eyes filled up with tears, we all laughed.

Chopper and I boarded to ferry and headed back to Split, catching the bus to Dubrovnik a couple of hours later.

13 comments

  1. Best survival tactic I’ve ever come across while traveling. It’s absolutely necessary to replace goodbye’s with “see you soon”‘s. I’m not sure many of us would make it without at least vaguely believing in the possibility of running into eachother again. So many instafriends while traveling. Such a blessing.

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    1. So true. I am really fortunate — I get to see Shaun and Amy when I go back over next month. Staying with S and meeting up with A somewhere during the journey. 🙂 And, Chopper has relatives a few hours from my parent’s house.

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  2. Love this story! It can be hard saying goodbye. What I’ve learned is that people enter my life for a reason. My experience with them is what I needed at the time. Just cause they’re gone doesn’t meant they didn’t impact me or are forgotten.

    You know the saddest bit? The one person I’m going to miss the most is my cat, Amelie. Haha..

    Crazy cat lady signing off!

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  3. I had a really hard time saying goodbye when I left the small rural island I used to live on in Korea. I had come to know so many of the locals, despite the language barrier, and it was so hard for me to know that I wouldn’t see them again and there wasn’t even a good way for me to explain that to them.

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