TRAVEL MEMORIES - A Priceless Collection
Life is a funny thing. We all have our silly little quirks, things that keep us ticking and we’re all hoarders in our own ways. One way or another we manage to collect, be it expensive possessions in hopes of standing out, a traditional collection like stamps or coins or for some it’s literally clutter and trash. We surround ourselves with physical items that ultimately weigh us down rather than fill a hole we’re hoping to fill.
The one thing I collect, that I’m absolutely addicted to and simply can not get enough of is memories. Travel memories to be specific.
No matter what happens in my life, if I get kicked onto the street, get sick, or lose everything I have under the stars, no one can take the memories I’ve collected and shared in my life. Yes, just like physical possessions our memories can become old, worn and faded but the lessons I learned in acquiring them and the feeling of joy when I think of them, will always stay with me. Not only are they mine and mine alone, they are trophies and diplomas representing the life lessons and personal transformations I’ve endured.
The memories of the struggles I faced remind me of what I am capable of overcoming and the immense strength that I have deep down but don’t always get the opportunity to use. Trekking in the Himalayan mountain range in Nepal is filled with memories of pain, aches and perseverance but also the incredible reward I received at the end as I watched the sun rise over Mt Everest. They remind me to keep pushing forward.
Whenever I’m scared of a new adventure or task, I think of being in the back of a truck, armed guard at the ready as we travelled on the Khyber Pass from Pakistan into Afghanistan. The feeling of my feet leaving the platform as I leapt from a bridge in South Africa, taking a bungee plunge 216 metres (708 feet) above the Bloukrans River changes my perspective of fear. Managing in dozens of countries where they don’t speak my language and resorting to secondary measures showed me that with the right attitude and perseverance there is always a way.
Vivid fish swimming around me in the shallow, warm reef waters surrounding our tiny Maldives island and the endless mountains of sugary sand dunes across the Sahara desert in Mauritania remind me of how beautiful this world is and what we have to live for. The historical genius of pyramids in not only Egypt but Sudan and the beautiful centuries old architecture throughout Europe leave me inspired and wanting to achieve more in my own life.
And above all else, the lives I touch in the process of accumulating my collection is irreplaceable. I’ll never forget the beaming faces of smiling children as we travelled across 38 African countries. Their little hands waving as they ran along side our truck or buses waving with giant, glowing smiles.
These are just a mere taste of the travel memories that have shaped me into the person I am today and that continue to walk with me wherever I go. The one thing I hoard that can not be taken away and that I cherish the most.
What do you collect? What is your most valued or vivid travel memory that will always stay with you?
I’d love to hear your memories, either in the comments below or on our weekly Twitter chat #TRLT where we’ll be discussing TRAVEL MEMORIES this week!
Search the hashtag #TRLT on Twitter to find us and don’t forget to include the hashtag #TRLT in your tweets to participate with fellow travellers. I am there each and every week hosting with fellow founder and friend Shane Dallas (public speaker, visited 100+ countries, currently living in Kenya) and amazing travel host, and good friend, Jessica Lipowski (accomplished author and “foodie” in USA) and host Anton Magnin (specialist in family travel in South Africa).
Cheers to your travel memories