Here I am sitting in a complete foreign city, crunched in a ball because of "traveler's stomach", feeling lost in culture I don't know and stifled by a language I can't speak. Yet if you asked me how I feel I would answer without hesitation "happier than ever!!"
You see adventure isn't comfortable, it isn't glorious like the movies make it out to be. It's the heartbreak of having to leave loved ones, it's the fear of being lost in city that doesn't know your name, it's the nights spent on the toilet wishing you hadn't eaten that street food.
So why do we adventure?
Maybe we adventure to escape, escape civilization, escape a life that doesn't fit us. We adventure to lose ourselves and simultaneously discover what is inside. We do it to push our boundaries, because only when we are driven to our limits can we find our true potential.
Some of us do it to feel sane, to disconnect from a virtual reality and reconnect to a larger would. We do it to remind ourselves how small and insignificant we and our problems are. We adventure to feel more and feel less, to live on the edge and let curiosity guide our footsteps. We do it because somehow a little travel is always the perfect antidote to a lingering sadness.
Above all, we do it because something in us tells us there is more out there and that we too can be a part of it.
As I sit here writing this I am less than 12 hours away from embarking on my next adventure where I will be challenged to create my new home ( for the next 7 months) in the outskirts of a small Northern Indigenous village called Cotacachi. The adventures of turning complete strangers into family, of turning a foreign language into familiar, of learning the dying art of traditional sustainable agriculture are all tasks that both excited and intimidate me.
In these next few weeks I will have to look deep inside for the courage that moves me against the current, down the path less travelled. I will have to embrace feeling scared, uncomfortable, naive and lost because it is only when we embrace these vulnerable feelings do we discover that the world is much bigger, much more beautiful, much more filled with love than we could have ever imagined.