Pre-travelled Sahara was a naïve and skittish girl with a fear of getting lost because she has no sense of direction and no life experience except going to school and going back home. She fears adventures and has always been anxious in going to new places and meeting new people. She’s always been worried about not getting things right and has never tried anything new. She’s boring and has no good story to tell.
It even got to a point where she wasn’t anywhere near excited about her life. It felt like nothing was turning out right and that maybe tomorrow was not really worth waiting for. Everyday she witness people suffering, people losing, people mourning, people trying hard, people getting their hearts broken. Maybe she’s even one of them. She was stuck in a dead end road because she was so distracted by all the undesirable things around her.
But here’s the thing: she’s gone for good. Capones Island
One day, I just woke up and realized that I was starting to lose myself into a person I don’t want to be. I knew I need something to change in my life. I need to feel something different, something exciting. I realized that I can’t stay stuck in a certain place forever. I had to go somewhere. And although it scares the hell out of me, I get going.
What exactly happened for me to change perspective, you ask? My answer is this: I fell in love. I fell in love with adventure. I fell in love with the places I’ve been. I fell in love with stories. I fell in love with the smiles of the people I meet along the way. I fell in love with life.
Maybe it was the sense that when I was out there, I feel like I belong, even for a moment. I feel more alive. I feel free. I feel more confident, like I can conquer everything that life throws at me. And it was somehow fulfilling. I like stepping out of the material world for a while. I’ve slept in tight spaces inside tent beside my friends. I’ve slept in an open cottage in a cold February night without even a blanket. I’ve crawled in very narrow holes inside a cave, my face side by side with the mud. I’ve taken a bath in open showers. I’ve spent a full night sleep in a bus. I’ve eaten biscuits for lunch. I’ve trekked a hill with an open wound on my feet. I’ve gone to the beach without even applying a sunscreen. It may even be an endless list. But it did not end my journey. Because there was something about being away that appealed to me so much.
Honestly, I’m a big sucker for social media. And seeing people posting travel photos on Instagram, I realized I don’t just want to double tap. I want to see it for myself. I want to feel it for myself: the adventure, the thrill, the excitement, the experience. I want to experience what the life has to offer first hand. I want to witness how beautiful the world is no matter how ugly others perceive it to be.
Traveling changed me. I now became this wide-eyed girl who is so hungry for the adventures and knowledge the world has to offer and a lot of stories to tell. I guess the best thing that happened was finding myself in the journey, finding who I am and realizing that who I’ve been is not a limit to who I can be. That the world is too big to make boundaries to what you can achieve. I started trusting the future again and fell in love with each moment. I know now that there is so much more than the four walls of my bedroom, or the small space of my work desk. There is so much more.
They said you had to experience life for you to truly appreciate it. Well, I’m planning of indulging more.
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This post is an entry for Traveloka’s blog writing contest. Look it up here: How Travel Changed My Life Blogger Contest