I’m sitting here in the Queen Alia Airport in Jordan, fresh off a 12 hour flight from Chicago, wide-eyed and struggling to fight off jet lag. The airport is still and quiet. A few Muslims are kneeling west saying their daily prayers as the sun sinks behind the endless desert. Sitting around waiting for my last connecting flight, I can’t help but reflect at this brief moment, at the decision that got me here and how I’m balancing the edge of a life of first and last.
Everything I’ve done this past week has been a last. Eating the last of my favorite nachos (yum), teaching my last students, and saying my last goodbyes. Everywhere I went I was finishing up the last parts of that life and peering out into the new life ahead of me; a world of firsts in which every day is filled with something new and exciting to see and experience.
Time for Adventure
For the last six years, my life has been about exploration and the freedom that only travel can give me. Almost two years ago, I traded this freedom in order to obtain a lasting dream that I could extend my freedom. Tackling hard work, stress, loss, and doubt along the way. I had faith I could make my dream my reality and, travel the world and cross of my bucket list. I’m now eagerly grasping the freedom that I’ve missed so dearly, a privilege that I have promised not to take for granted.
The dream was worth chasing; the risks were worth taking. I am ready to explore the world. Once again I can choose where I go, when I go, and how to get there. This randomness is the breeding ground for adventures, and I’m ready to have them.
Travel is Art
I believe, deep within my core, that travel is an art form. The musician strikes his chords and notes, fitting each little note together to form a song. In the same way, the traveler visits and explores each country; each a piece of a greater song that forms the symphony of our lives.
The traveler is also like the painter. He seeks to expand and express his art through his journey of seeing and sharing in traditions of other cultures. A painter will leak their imagination onto their canvas as a way to express how they see the world. For the traveler, our wanderlust is our canvas, our brush is our freedom, and our paint is the experiences we encounter. With these tools, a traveler expresses how he sees the world, slowly filling the canvas of his life. For me, that moment has finally come. The paints are laid out. I’m standing before me canvas, and I can’t wait to see the masterpiece take shape.
How do you guys feel? Is travel an art?