“You are the most adventurous person I know!”
I stared at the chat window for a minute, wondering if the new year meant old age and poor eyesight. But as I laughed away the comment, and chatted with my colleague, I couldn’t help feel a totally gratifying, but a totally unfamiliar sense of pride. If you are one of my close friends, or even somebody who has known me for a fair amount of time, you would totally know why.
It’s not that I have never had compliments come my way – but it’s usually adjectives like – sensible, calm, sweet, deserving, nice etc? Nice? Of course, “nice” is nice, but I had always secretly wanted something like a “wild” or a “crazy”, or something as glamorous as that. So when “adventurous” came my way, I grabbed on to it tight, and held on to it with glee, so that it didn’t disappear when “nice” appeared!
But if I have to admit the truth (or rather because my friends and hubby would read this post), I have to say that it’s never been this way. As fun as this blog sounds, or as glamorous as my Facebook pictures are, it does’t always convey the right picture. While trying not to sound like martyr, I have to say that I am the most fearful person I have ever met. Not negative, mind you – just fearful. Don’t believe me? Let me list the things I have been scared of – of flying, of getting late to a meeting, swimming, driving, of the boss, of luggage getting delayed on a flight, of spilling coffee on a friend’s new sofa, of R and L not approving, of confronting the cheating auto guy, of the cop who could screw up my passport application, of telling the parents about all my solo travel, of trying out that new vending machine in that lonely train station, of immigration, of that new dress not fitting well…of ..well, so many things. I have always been scared. And if, not scared, worried.
And for those of you worry, you would know that it’s not a great feeling at all.
But it’s been a good year. Not because I have changed a lot, but because it’s been just a good year. 🙂 and because of the travel. And of course, all the adventures that go along with it. So the fears have receded – not faded, receded. And joys have just…expanded. It’s tough to explain, but they have. Not doubled, or tripled – expanded. The joy of just being…away from all the self-inflicted expectations..the joy of knowledge…accepting what comes with the world…the joy of kindness…when generosity heals the soul…the joy of love…when it’s unconditional…the joy of freedom…when it gets unfettered by fear. Joys, happiness, contentment – when you travel..and travel more.
There have been so many adventures. Some small, some funny, some embarrassing, and some long-winded ones which I am sure I can exaggerate and tell my grand children as stories of their “oh so cool grandma” 🙂 And while this is the season of year ending or new year posts, I can’t make myself come up with a long-winded “year that was” post. You will have to just believe me when I tell you that travelling has been fun. And of course read about all those places; and get jealous; and send flattering comments about my pictures; and plan vacations using my travel tips; and tell me about them and make me jealous; and most importantly…travel..just travel..and have beautiful, breathtaking adventures of your own. And give up on those fears and those worries..and be the person you want to be!
Happy New Year people! May the adventures begin! And may you discover the adventurous spirit in you!
(This is one of my favorite images of 2014 – one of a quirky mad hotel in Vienna and another of my bike journey across the Croatian coast)