The Pilgrimage


Every month I come back to Austria for two days to visit my daughter.

It is a tiring journey as I leave Lagos at 8 am and arrive at my home in Vienna usually after seven hours or more when I don’t find a direct flight or if there is a two hour delay like the last time.

The next day I take the 10 am train and travel for about 4 1/2 to five hours (door-to-door) to get to Corinthia.

Usually, I spend three to five hours on that afternoon with my daughter, then go to rest (or have a sauna).

The day after I see my daughter again at 9 am for two to three hours before I take the train back to Vienna, usually arriving some time between 4 pm and 8 pm at my Vienna home, depending on the timing.

The next morning I usually take the 7 am flight back to Faro (which means I leave my home about 5:15 am) and arrive back to my home in Lagos around seven hours later.

This time I didn’t find an affordable flight back to Faro, so I’m not flying direct and not to Faro but Malaga, which eventually makes my trip back about 22 hours long.

It’s tiring and stressful. Last time my immune system got so weak in the process, that I was ill for more than a week.

And it’s expensive. Including flights, trains, hotel, food and presents each of these journies makes up about a quarter of my monthly living expenses.

So it’s at least a 75 hour journey with two flights and two train rides of at least 4 1/2 hours, about 6.000 km and takes more than 10% of a months time out of my life to see my daughter for five to eight hours in neither a private nor intimate setting.

Is it worth it?

Of course! She is my daughter! And by that, I don’t only mean my blood… all my aunts as well as my parents say, she has the same look in her eyes and the same charisma like me – when I was a child… dominat, charismatic, intense.

Apart from that, I’ve seen so many women (and in the Algarve even more) that have many issues and struggle after many years and even decades because their fathers were physically or emotionally absent. And I want to make sure that my daughter knows I really love her more than anything.

Recently, she started to express her wishes that I bring her to bed, that I come to her place to play with her in her space – her world – as we usually only meet in public without any privacy or intimacy, and she also stated multiple times that she wants to come to Portugal.

For her mother, it is not yet possible. I’m not sure why but have some wild bets 😉

I am certain, even if her mother is too caught up in her mental models to ever acknowledge, our daughter will one day see the effort daddy made to be part of her life and make her own conclusions about if mummy’s restrictions were justified.

But maybe I am just delusional. Maybe my daughter doesn’t deserve to be with her dad in a private and intimate setting ✌🏽