Over the past six weeks I have decided to take another adventure. Unlike the adventures of my post military days where some friends and I load into a car and see how far we can get in a day or two before returning, I decided on setting my sights higher.
The military gave me a gift greater then the time and service I gave them, the gift of travel. In the true nomadic nature of my Comanche ancestors and Saggitarius celestral sign I have made a grad step into a new set of adventures. As a child I have always dreamed of seeing far off lands, lands of ancient lore and history. Being a poor farmboy from Alabama I knew this was out of react, until the day I enlisted into the Navy. Now I can say I have been to more countries then my some of my class mates have been to states, some even counties. I am not boasting, bur rather amazed at how much I have done with so little. Well, now it is time to open another chapter. One area of the planet has fasinated me since I was young, the Orient. China and Japan are two places I always wanted to go if a time machine were ever invented. Now I have the oppertunity to begin an series of odysees to fulfill that vision, minus the time machine of course.
I have been awe struck at all of my friends reactions to my wanting to and now going to go to such places. They all gasp and act as if it is another planet I am going to. Granted, the travel is expensive and the time off is a hassel to my profession… but as the events of the past 10 years have tought me, waste not… want not. I do not want to walk accross the street and get struck by a car and realize I did actually have the oppertunity to see another place I always wanted to and now know it will never happen. I am fortunate enough to have a life that allows me the freedom to do this, and I am not going to let it go to waste.
The first part of any journey requires 3 things, a starting point, an end point, and the tools to get there. Sound familiar? It should as it is in the opening lesson of this blog. Now each change in ones life requires a catalyst, for we are truely lazy creatures at the core. Mine was meeting a wonderful women in China who has offered to show me the country she calls home. I could not pass up an oppertunity such as this. A new found friendship, a trip to an exotic and far off land, and the mystery of the unknown… too tempting!
First thing I did after deciding to take such a journey was to get a passport. In our post 9/11 days it was a little of a pain, but all in all, not a big hassel. Next came the visa (which I still do not have but am hoping to have by Friday!). For those who think American red tape is bad, deal with a foreign countries red tape! Now the tickets, luggage, gift lists (for the woman I am meeting along for friends here) have to be made up and filled, and a plan of things to see and places to go needs to be finalized. The trip begins soon, in exactly one week, Nov 4th. I will be in China only a short time, but I feel it will be better to go in smaller ‘mini-vacations’ then one large, long one. This way I can see regions and areas outside of the normal tourists traps. Now I do still want to go to Bejing, the Great Wall, and Shanghai, but that can wait. I will make posts when ever I can, which is not known if I will have the oppertunity to. I will only be in China for a week, leaving the following Thursday for a day of work and then a weekend to distribute all my gifts for friends and family I picked up on the way. I can promise all of you this; there will be many pictures, and some interesting posts from places I have gone and sights I have seen, as they will be outside the normal day to day activities we always do. This will be a vacation, which I sorely need after being placed in the regional support team, but between relaxing and taking it easy I am going to be a typical tourists. I could post my itenary, but planes made seldom happen the way you want them to, so I have places I would like to see in mind, and if I get there I get there, if not then not. The military taught me it is always better to be fluid in your execution of plans, as a wrench will always get thrown in to shut everything down. So with any luck I will have the final piece of the puzzel in place tomorrow evening, and then can get everything ready to go by the end of next week. Specifics to follow…. I promise!