Maybe Slowly isn't only about how slow the letters are to arrive from one point to another, but more, how slow it takes to create a friendship through letters, slowly but strongly.
« Hello, I’m Paulo »
That’s how I started my letter for a while, that’s also how starts my description on Slowly. I am a French guy trying to reach Mongolia with my yellow van. I have been traveling since November 2018, an incredible journey. I started to be on Slowly cause I was missing contact with people and in winter there is not a lot of people outside. Because I was not having an internet connection all the time, Slowly was the best way to meet and speak with strangers from all over the world. I discovered a lot of great people from Philippines, Indonesia, Germany, Spain and so many more.
Traveling is making me have a lot of different travel stories to talk about, to share, make people travel with me with when I can. Having a lot of time in my van also allows me to be able to answer a lot too, I used to have a lot of different pen-pal, and it was great.
When I was exploring Slovenia, I received a letter from a new pen-pal from Brazil who was also traveling. Actually in Italy and hitting to Zagreb the next days, she was asking me if I have already been in Croatia, and what kind of stuffs were to be seen in the capital. We shared traveling experience and started to know each other through our letters.
I was always in movement, it was difficult for me to predict where I would be for the next days, the next month, but the travel made me come back in Zagreb, where my pen-pal was also was. After few letters to talk about it, we decided to meet and it went super great. A new friendship was born. We stayed few days together in Zagreb, discovering the city, sharing experiences and adventures, about Slowly too, we were both really into the stamp collection so we were sending letters just to share our new stamps sometimes. I was helping her to improve her English, even if I was French, I was able to help her a bit.
I continued my road trip across Europe, but we were still sending letters and keeping in touch.
Because life is sometimes complicated, we have been able to help each other and I invited her to join me in the van the time she will have a better situation to continue her own trip. We shared the road for one month, and even here, it was funny to be able to continue to send letters through Slowly, even if we were next to each other.
It was a great adventure and in our trips through Europe, we were able to meet several other times in different countries. I think we met and crossed together in Croatia, Montenegro, Bosnia, Albany, Greece, Italy, Germany, France, Switzerland and even Monaco in different periods of our respective travels. It was great, from two people who started to discuss by virtual letters only few months ago.
The type of trip we are doing are always changing, and even if it get more difficult to be on Slowly by now, we are still in contact. And I am putting my van-trip on the side, and will take a plane and have another trip in Brazil to start another trip there and discover the amazing country she talked to me about, before going back in France and continuing my road trip in Europe and Mongolia. She is now one of the greatest friends I have and Slowly showed us how amazing it could be to connect with people the «good old way».
We are also now sending real letters, it takes way longer than the virtual one.
We also had this reflection « Maybe Slowly isn’t only about how slow the letters are to arrive from one point to another, but more, how slow it takes to create a friendship through letters, slowly but strongly ».