_ As I was looking for a tempting winter vacation destination, in the midst of a New England summer, I had a bunch of names in mind, Budapest, Peru, Chile, Kathmandu, New Zealand …

Very hard to choose, indeed, I had to ask myself, where did I want the most?

I looked up, there they are, a series of Africa travel books sitting on top of the shelf, almost buried in dust. The idea suddenly flashed through me, how come have I forgotten? That is where I had been dreaming to go for years, 9 years to be exact, what’s wrong with me? What’s stopping me? What am I waiting for?

Ever since college, I have wondered and wondered about THE AFRICA, sounds so cliché, I know. I am curious about pygmies in Congo forests, I want to see the wildlife, the migration, the Serengeti, and I want to be at the land that bears all those female authors’ non-fictional biographies and all those male authors’ fiction stories.

When you have an awesome but bold idea, it’s always easy to make excuses from doing it. It’s easy to find all those reasons that can stop yourself from what you like. As if you are constantly looking for any signs or signals along the way to relieve yourself from the strenuous journey. ‘I’m not ready’ ‘Maybe next year’, sometimes, is just such a lame way of saying ‘I can’t do this’.

I’m not gonna die if I fail. But I’d be regretting and keep pondering my head ‘what if’-s if I don’t even try. Isn’t it easier to clear up the myth than sit behind and build excuses, one after another?

I am well aware that it won’t be an easy trip, but I’m not worried. Or to be more accurate, I was too busy preparing for the trip to be anywhere close to worry.

Setting expectation low proves helpful to get myself ready to embrace the obstacles along the way. All along, I did not ‘mandate’ myself to reach the summit, as I wouldn’t want to put myself in the situation of risking the health in exchange for ‘face-saving’. I know well about my body and I know when to push myself and when to stop. I just simply set the goal at --- go challenge yourself and see how far I can reach.

Be strong, not only physically but also mentally. It’s a game versus your own self. And yet it’s not a slogan, work hard to prepare yourself towards the goal so that you are ready to get going and keep going at the point.

One thing I learned from the trip is, as long as I am determined, I can do this. Everyone deserves more faith in oneself.

Leave a Reply.