I Believe in the Journey

Ryan - Kitimat, Canada
Entered on November 16, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
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I Believe in the Journey.

In the last two years, I have treaded approximately 9.4 percent of the world. This excessively precise percentage was brought to you by the fine people at Facebook, who offer endless- at times mostly meaningless- online applications to dabble with on a rainy Sunday afternoon.

To the point, the reason I first started travelling was a decision made from a striving ambition to find my destination in life. It all started on a Saturday in September.

Weather wise, it was just another autumn day in Canada, rainy and overcast. I felt much like the weather that day. I was a sophomore, spending my Saturday morning regretting the night before. But that Saturday was different than all others; I had an epiphany of sorts that day. I spontaneously felt I needed to see the world through more than just a textbook. I needed to find my destination where everything fit into place; where nourishing life, love and happiness existed and was just waiting for me to arrive!

But having the urge to find this destination did not necessarily mean I could just get up and go. My undergraduate wallet was ever so thin and my upper-level social theory text, much too thick.

Then again, if I didn’t immediately ignite this voyage that I had recognized so confidently and entirely as the right step, I would forever fade away into a life of contemplation; lacking any real action, any real happiness- such a life I could not live. Now, after this realization, taking the journey was no longer a decision, but an obligation; a declaration to myself! Following a series of fortunate events and inspiring people, I was off to Europe.

The journey to find my destination had begun!

I must say the trip was life changing; the historic Charles River in Prague, the rolling green mountains of Bosnia, the crystal coast of Montenegro, and all the marvellous people I met along the way. When I say life changing though, it is not because I found a destination where everything fit into place. That first trip off home soil, with my 20-something wisdom by my side, was really life changing because it allowed me find out about my emotional- at times dramatic- self, the wide world, and all the remarkable people that fill it. What it really did was instil in me yet another life altering realization:

Life is not about trying to find that perfect place in the sun; the utopia we construct in our minds; life is not about the destination. I believe the true essence of life is found by embracing the journey, by believing that every brilliant life experience along the way can open up infinite pathways of grand opportunity.