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  • "Spend some time alone every day."- His Holiness the Dalai Lama

Sunday, 23 August 2009

What would life be like with no downs?

Have you ever noticed that it's the bad things that happen on a holiday that really stick in your mind, and in a way, create the memories of that holiday? And yet if you have a holiday where nothing goes wrong, and everything works out smoothly, you remember it as being a great time, but the details aren't as sharp as they would be had anything bad happened?

Our honeymoon is a classic example of this. It began with me picking up the wrong bag at the airport in Maui. This was bad, because I'd taken the wrong bag to Maui from Honolulu, which meant that my actual bag could have been anywhere in the US, or even the world by now. Fortunately, the guy whose bag I'd taken realised that my bag wasn't his, despite their ridiculously similar appearances, and reported his missing. So when I rang Honolulu airport my bag was sitting all alone at the baggage claims department. They flew it over on the very next flight, and I was to meet someone there with the bag I'd taken. Problem solved. Thank God.

Then it was the weather. Who knew we had gone there in their wet season? For 8 out of the 10 days it poured with rain. As we flew from island to island we were literally being followed by a storm that would then wreak havoc a day or so after we'd left. It was a shame, therefore, that I never got to swim in the ocean. But not so bad to find out that two days after we left the first hotel, the grounds got flooded from high sea level and destructive waves.

Then there was the hire car incident. When we hired it I nudged Shane at the question of "Do you want insurance?"
"Get it," I hissed. I sure didn't want to be stuck paying for anything more than necessary, so insurance seemed like a good idea.
And lucky we did, because on our way up the driveway of our first hotel there was a roundabout made of large rocks. In a brief moment of confusion and disorientation, Shane went the wrong way around the roundabout, misjudged the distance, and drove over a rock with the front right wheel of the car. Which promptly  slashed the tyre and hub cap. Wonderful. Fortunately, the insurance covered it, and we wound up with the only hire car they had left: a very sexy mustang convertible. Gee, what a shame.

The last straw was that flight home was delayed indefinitely because of the bad weather. Like I needed another reason to be scared of flying. So we were stuck at some airport, I can't even remember which one now, that wasn't even really enclosed because it gets so hot there. So, of course, everyone was getting wet, and grumpy, and with no end in sight it was really quite...uncomfortable, to say the least.

Looking back, except for the weather, every other crappy incident was immediately preceded by another incident that made up for it. It was a roller coaster of highs and lows, that honeymoon. One I'm not likely to forget any time soon.

But, you see, it's the scary, exciting stories that I enjoy hearing about when people tell me of their travels. And they tell those stories with pride, like those bad things that happen are the whole reason they stepped out of their comfort zone in the first place. To experience the scary stuff that you can tell stories about later. I mean, let's face it. That's what makes for an interesting story.

And this theory- that it's the bad stuff that happens during travel that makes the trip-that led me to realise that it's actually the bad things that happen in life that makes us who we are as well. We are the product of all our negative experiences. It is because of the negative parts of my life that I am so determined to prove myself to everyone who loves me. It is because of these experiences that I am stubborn and refuse to give up on my dreams. It's because of these character-building moments that I am who I am.

Imagine how boring life would be with no downs. Nothing to compare the good times to. The good times would seem boring and lifeless. I don't want a perfect life. I just want a life full of experiences.


Brenda said...

Boring with a capital B. Life's supposed to be messy anyway. I just wish I can clean it up with some Gumption. lol

Bells said...

and partly that's just because everyone loves a good story, don't they? It's a way of making sense out of the not so great things that can happen.

Mel said...

That's so true! What's the point of traveling if you don't have any good stories to tell about it afterwards!!

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