My travel journey began 10 years ago. Before then, my journeys were mostly in country. Uganda was probably the farthest I went, to visit my sister who was at the time studying. Other than that, I’d either hop on public service vehicles or personal vehicles heading to visit relatives during holidays and back.
Shortly afterwards, I quit my job as an educationist to pursue music, acting and poetry. That was one huge risk I took, given I did not have any other source of income. I later discovered things were not as smooth sailing as I’d imagined. Qat is a risk taker. I pressed on and participated in artistic ventures, out of love than seeking that extra penny. I eventually got into the human rights movement a year or so later, as an activist and still wrote music, performed with a band at some hotel and attended spoken word sessions on the side. This is where my travel journey started.
My first trip outside my country was an official duty, life-changing trip to Sao Paolo, Brazil, where we stayed for a week. I never looked back. Work was fun, travel was even more exciting. Despite the fact that the flight was 16 hours long and the turbulence got me thoroughly shaken and I cried for the most part, it was well worth it. I had sworn to never get on a plane again after that. Mhhh, I unbelievably did, a short while after that trip.
I loved breathing the air in different places, meeting a diverse people, engaging in discussion with them, experiencing different ways of life other than what I was used to, growing up. That trip opened my mind and shook me out of my comfort zone.
By the time we got back, I craved a new experience in a different place. I learnt so much about myself during that trip than anyone would have sat to tell me. We did not have the luxury of time to sight see as our days were mostly spent in and out of workshops. I loved to absorb every bit of the work experiences my colleagues from the world over had to share and also took sometime to get in touch with myself through spending some time alone, read and stroll down the streets from our hotel to acquaint myself with the environment.
Travel ignited my inspiration to write, about anything. Some of the poems I published were written during this trip.
See, when you are stuck in that one place, it is hard to ever imagine how life is out there. You might lose sight of how much you are blessed and what you have. I built and deepened relationships with people I met and oh! The comfort of knowing that the day to day challenges I encountered, others from a different part of the world did too. It brought an overwhelming sense of relief. I was not alone.
The memories I took out of this trip will last me a lifetime. I gained confidence and acquired a peace of mind. Travel displaces you from your usual life and adjust in a new environment and for the period of time you are there, you begin to appreciate what you have instead of constantly complaining. You realize how privileged you are.
Travel gave me freedom and adventure to be myself and do whatever I pleased, whenever I wanted. It brought me life for the dreamer in me.
I do not remember the type of phone I had back then but I began noticing how beautiful photos looked and the feel they left every time I stared at them. These ones are raw. Unedited.
I had the opportunity to marvel at landscapes. My mind wandered, my soul searched, to find the best words to describe each beauty my eyes caught.
Travel kept me humble. I could write on and on and on. Long story short, I began following my wanderlust, which brought me here.
Take that leap of faith. Experience the mindset travel leaves you with. Thrive. Have fun. Repeat.