A World of Adventure

Sometimes I contemplate whether or not after high school I should take a gap year. There’s so many things to learn by simply traveling and exploring, and I wonder if there’s too many possible adventures to simply get done in a life time. I can’t imagine them all as I’m stuck in school doing essays, endless math problems, and projects, but I hope.

As much as I picture myself being an ambitious law student in the heart of New York City, I begin to stalk the traveler pages of Instagram who share their passions to the world, and wonder how life like that would be. To take life one step at a time without a care in the world about the future. To travel freely, explore different cultures, or learn for mere enjoyment rather than cramming in information for a final exam.

I’ve had the privilege to travel before. From galloping horses through Ireland’s terrain to swimming with stingrays in the Cayman Islands, highlights of my life have always included traveling. But if I’m honest with myself, I probably won’t become one of those people who are in a new country every week, and that’s okay, but there are two things I know I want to do before I die.

  1. Backpacking through Europe. This has always been on the top of my bucket list. I just want to go with a group of friends traveling city to city via train, bike ride through Amsterdam, go to the art museums in France, or swim in the oceans of Greece. There’s so many opportunities in Europe that there wouldn’t need to be a full agenda to make the trip enjoyable.
Photo Credit: weheartit.com

2. A horseback riding safari through Africa. I didn’t even know this was a thing until a couple months ago, but it’s been on my mind ever since. I’ve always wanted to go on an African safari, but being able to do it on horseback would make it ten times better. Just picturing galloping through the Savannas near the zebras and the antelope under the bright sun, it seems to surreal to be true, but it is.

These are just two things out of a dozen. The world is so big that exploring every inch of it in such a short time seems impossible. But I want to make sure that I discover as much of it as I can.

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Discoloration

Visions of gray filled up my wondering eyes.

The somber haze lingered in the moist air.

The drab flowers filled up my already melancholy mind.

The first day we met the visions of gray disappeared,

Faded away.

The opal skies meet my eyes.

The green burst from the sidewalk cracks,

Fuchsia flowers graced the abundance of colors appearing around them.

White antique pearls hung from the wealthy’s necks,

As the hazelnut colored shoes wrapped the feet of the poor.

My eyes wandered and landed on you,

The one who brought color,

Who filled my life with wonder.

My feelings reached deeper than the dark blue lingering in the depth of the ocean,

And higher than the crystal mountain tops towering over the towns and people within them.

The sapphire dreams of you filled my mind.

The day you left the color disappeared;

The gray swept into my mind like a mother sweeping away her family’s mess,

And the gray returned as if you were never here.

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Spare Change

I collect memories in my head like a child picks up change off the pavement.

A visual: Boy walks home on the sidewalk, making sure to hop over every crack in the pavement. He spots a penny, examines it between two pinched fingers and deems the coin a lucky charm, then stuffs it into a pocket for safekeeping.

Photo Credit: FiveCentNickel.com

Change, what a funny thing it is.

I often find myself reminiscing on the past. In some ways I guess that could be a good thing, looking back on old memories. Mostly though it just makes me sad.

Photos, journals, memories, they all hit you with this bittersweet nostalgia. Sometimes I wish I could go back in time, just to relive a particular day.

Over the past few years I’ve made connections with different people, some of whom I’ve come to genuinely care about and love. Sometimes I look at some of them and wonder if in ten years I’ll still remember their face, name, or the reason why I was friends with them. It sucks, but the fact is that for a lot of them I probably won’t.

Maybe I’m afraid of change. The more I think about the past the more it makes me dread the future. I wish it wouldn’t go by so fast. I don’t want more of my friends to graduate. I don’t want to get older. But they will; I will.

I can’t control time, no one can. So I guess all I can do is take it in while I can. The good, the bad, and everything in between.

A memory: Last night I was eating dinner with four friends. I hold an imaginary camera out in front of my face and pose, making fun of the boy sitting at the end of the table. “Hey,” he says, “you have to squint your eyes more if you want it to be accurate.” A hand smacks down on top of the table, legs kick out in front of chairs, a forefinger pushed against pursed lips reprimands us for the eruption of shrieks and giggles. We laugh so hard that our stomachs ache and tears spill out of our eyes.

I hope that I’ll remember that moment, even though it’s sort of insignificant in the grand scheme of things. But, hey, it’s the little things that count, right?

In that moment I realized that I have some wonderful, genuine people in my life, and I’m so lucky to be able to call them my best friends.

A piece of advice (for myself and whoever might be reading this): Keep picking up all the pennies you find, even if they don’t seem lucky. Everyone can use a little spare change.