A year ago from next week I was heading to Peru for my maiden voyage to South America. Little did I know it would be the catalyst for a connection that was so much larger than just another adventure to a faraway place.
While visiting the Amaru village in the Pisac District, I met and created an instant connection with this little gal. And, proving that connections really are what make this world - my world - so insanely beautiful and special to me, I’ve come to a wondrous conclusion since I’ve returned home that despite the fact that my eyes were able to bear witness to so many magical, spiritual, indescribable, even…sites - when I think back to Peru I see her face…the villagers’ faces - and recall tickling her and giggling with them while dancing, weaving and praying to pachamama in the open potato field after Gregorio shared with us age-old knowledge about a natural plant that was used as a fertility drug and we picked violet flowers used for dyes in the Quechua weaving process while snacking on fresh passion fruit (aka ‘monkey brains’), jokes and laughs shared on the Inca Trail with our porters and guide, Juancarlos (all individuals I’m proud to call friends now) and beyond. Because THAT is what travel is about for me. About the people you meet, the laughs you share regardless of language barriers or cultural barriers or political beliefs or skin color or nationality, or…whatever.
So many people in this world believe that travel isn’t reality. I disagree. The times when I’ve been sitting around a table with different people from different backgrounds in a foreign culture have been the times I’ve realized what is most real in this world. And I feel blessed my heart has felt this reality. And I feel blessed my mind is open because of it. The fact that people come from around the world to share a love for travel and can relate to each other and show compassion for each other despite where they’ve come from and find common ground? Well that’s quite a reality if you ask me. That’s the kind of reality I am glad to have encountered and will strive to continue to know and experience. Because after all, who says my reality has to look like yours? The end.
✈Adventure is a path. Real adventure – self-determined, self-motivated, often risky – forces you to have firsthand encounters with the world. The world the way it is, not the way you imagine it. Your body will collide with the earth and you will bear witness. In this way you will be compelled to grapple with the limitless kindness and bottomless cruelty of humankind – and perhaps realize that you yourself are capable of both. This will change you. Nothing will ever again be black-and-white.
Live your life from your heart. Share from your heart. And your story will touch and heal people’s souls.
Traveling is like flirting with life. It’s like saying, ‘I would stay and love you, but I have to go; this is my station.’
Today you were defeated, discouraged, dejected, burned again.
Someone brought it up, dressed you down, told you off, staged a coup.
Any other day you could’ve shrugged it off: but not today.
A tone, a word, a face dragged you into a pit, a chokehold, a fog.
It stings. But hey: you are not what has happened to you.
You’re not someone else’s fake idea of who they think you should be.
You’re more than a backroom whisper where rumors lose reality
— you are more than seedy surface opinions born in a broth of fantasy.
You are beloved by a cosmic king of constancy
who has narrated a different history over today, and everyday, and for eternity.
He underlines, highlights, italicizes you apart from who you think you are: and He is writing you with a furious final love.
Don’t let a bad mood steal you; don’t let a bad day say more about you than today.
Because it’s just today.
Let love say good morning.