Today was going to be the last day when all of us would be together in Europe. Although everybody had one or two days more to go before returning to India but after today our paths would sperate. Raj had stayed back one more day with her friends and was expected only by late evening just in time to say goodbyes. Rishu was the first to part around mid day after we had spend a failed hot morning going back to the castle/fort in search of a nice place for breakfast. That left Swati, Sid and me for the rest of the day. The days are terribly hot in Ibiza, even more if you have come from northern Europe, so we decided to spend them indoors, resting.
For the evening we had decided we would carry dinner to the fort and enjoy the sunset. Subway had been our (vegetarians) savior in the entire trip and as an ode to it we parceled a veg steak sub, picked beer enroute from grocers and made the final climb to the fort which has been our backdrop during the entire stay in Ibiza. It was around 2100 hours when we settled down on a rampart of the fort overlooking the Mediterranean sea. As we drank beer and enjoyed the sub, the sun set, revealing scores of ships, boats, yachts flaunting their illuminated decorations.
In that magical moment of peace the realization dawned upon us that our trip was almost ending. Nobody would deny that there was a sense of nostalgia, but everyone wanted to get back to their home now. I believe that proved how perfectly timed and fulfilling the trip was. We played a game where each one shared the best and worst moments of the trips and any inhibitions that we had harbored before.
We stayed on that fort till late, much after we had gulped all the beer and eaten every morsel of food we carried. Finally we came back to the lane which housed our apartment to witness the metamorphosis as described previously. But the effect wasn't the same.
As Sid and Raj had an very early morning flight we decided to go to bed early. 1-2 hrs later in came Raj after two days and as usual brought a huge influx of energy along with. Sid and Raj had just enough time to pack their bags and bid me goodbye, as Swati was fast asleep with her medication still on, as they left the apartment around 0100 hrs for their respective flights which were just an hour apart. As I lay besides Swati my mind went into a rewind of the last 20 days and filled me up with nostalgia, to shake off the feeling I did what I do every time on such occasions and that is to think of what's next to come.
We woke up next day leisurely without the alarm as our flight was around mid day. We had to vacate the apartment before 1000 hrs and so got busy with packing our stuff. Soon we were off to the airport for our next and final destination of the trip - Rome
We had started our trip 21 days back in Italy itself in Milan and now when we reached Rome we were greeted by familiar sign boards which seemed from a trip long back. We were gonna spend only one night and two days in Rome and so as an experience I had booked ourselves in a camping ground.
The camping ground was on the outskirts of the city but no ways outside it. It seemed so odd that the camping site was right inside a city. As we reached the camping grounds we knew we were in backpacking zone. Everywhere we could see only youngsters with backpacks speaking different tongues. As we were directed to our shelter in the camp, we passed by many 'campers' or 'RV's' or caravans as they are referred in India. They were of all sizes and had different amenities like a conjoint tent, barbeque electric point, bathrooms, showers, TV, etc. As we moved ahead we came across rows of tents with common bathroom and toilet enclosure. Further ahead were our shelters. Goods containers, the like of Maersk, were converted into cute little stand alone homes. There were six such homes in a cluster which had their own open space with benches and tables for having food and wine. As we entered the container converted room there was a bedroom with attached bathroom. It was the cutest thing we had ever stayed in. We loved the whole place and the concept so much that we decided to spend the rest of the evening in the campus itself and see the city tomorrow.
The campus has a small store from where we picked up wine and settled in the barbeque area where somebody's food was roasting spreading awesome aroma. After many days it was just the two of us spending a romantic evening in a far away, fairytale land.