Why Plan and Go on the Sailing Trip Now?
The most frequent questions asked of my bipeds these days – at least the questions I hear lately – are:
Why plan for this trip while you are in the prime of your careers?
Why not wait until you have retired?
The bipeds have been searching for a way to answer those questions, and found it when re-reading The Magicians Nephew by C.S. Lewis. Granted, the words are taken out of context, but the quote on its own resonates:
Make your choice, adventurous stranger. Strike the bell and bide the danger. Or wonder ’til it drives you mad, What would have followed, if you had.
I often find myself wanting to resp0nd to those who ask “Why now?” with my own question: “What are you waiting for?”
Are humans ever ready for anything they undertake, be it falling in love, having children, backpacking across Europe, becoming a painter or photographer, publishing a book or creating a start-up company? As a dog, I have no such hang ups; I just go with the flow, day by day, doing what my heart tells me to do.
But humans … I watch humans and their habit of “waiting for the right time” and I want to bark at them! Hear me when I say, if you wait for that “perfect” moment, for all the stars to be aligned, I fear, dear friend, that your dreams will remain something in the future and never in your present.
At what point in life do you take the leap of faith and jump? When do humans decide to finally follow their dreams, whatever those dreams may be?
For us, the dream is to live a “part-time” nomadic life, to travel the world as an unconventional family, documenting it in photos and writing about it in a blog. We share our experiences and adventures with anyone interested, hoping to inspire those who might want to undertake a similar adventure … or any adventure! We want to prove that our part-time nomadic life can be done with a small dog family member.
Are my bipeds a little bolder? Perhaps. Some hard life lessons may have had a hand in this. There have been a few tragic losses in their lives. I will not, out of respect for them, go into details, but suffice it to say that some people, whom they loved dearly, were gone too soon. Gone when they should have had years left to live, grow old and explore.
These losses taught them a valuable lesson. There may be no tomorrow, or tomorrow may not be the way you envisioned. You may lose your health or your strength, or your financial situation could change dramatically. There is no crystal ball. What a shame to delay your dreams only to have them dashed by circumstances beyond your ability to control.
You can save and plan for the “golden years” but should it be at the expense of today? There comes a time when you have to take a few steps back, take a deep breath, calm your erratically beating-out-of-control heart, hear the imaginary pistol shot, take off on your strong running start and … jump!
We keep hearing variations of, “Oh you guys are so lucky! I wish we could do something like that.” I listen to humans say this to the bipeds and I can’t help but wonder what they mean. It isn’t as if the bipeds suddenly came into a lot of money. Trust me, this is not the case. No fairy godmother waved a wand, nor was there an inheritance from some unknown; loaded relative. There was no winning lottery ticket or any other sudden fortune that would allow the bipeds to shout “Yeah! We can quit our jobs and travel the world!”
Luck, in fact, has little to do with our adventure; rather, it’s been planning, saving, researching, and focusing. It has already taken years – with two more years to go – to prepare for our Big Trip. We have a plan, we are sticking to it, and sacrifices are being made to make this happen. It started with downsizing our home a few years back. There will be no new car even though ours now has loads of rust and other issues. There are no new suits for dad, no new winter coat for mom, no cable TV, no voicemail on the cellphones and no fancy restaurants – in fact, no eating out, not even to go to the pub. The list is long my friends. The trip is a priority in our lives.
So now when people say, “I wish I could do that!” I enjoy listening to my bipeds reply:
You can! You just have to really want to. You have to plan it, feel it, eat it, sleep it. Surround yourself with support. If you do not already have people that will support you in your pursuit of living your dream, then we suggest you seek them out and allow yourself to be found by them. Interact with people who do what you dream of doing; follow their blogs and comment on posts that moved you; send them emails and ask them questions. Meet up with them if they are willing.
For, Dear Reader, at some point you have to stop talking about your dreams and begin doing! As a well-known traveler once said:
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.
– Marc Twain
The answer to those questions asked repeatedly of my bipeds is simple: Why not?!
What is your dream? What are you waiting for? Share in the comments below.