As 2009 began, I experienced walking in the clouds. It happened as midnight striked (on Chinese New Year, in Shanghai) and some kids flew some firecrackers into a neighbour’s apartment and fire broke out on the 8th floor apartment. I was then on the 11th floor and smoke just rampaged and as I tried to make sense of what was happening, I literally had the experience of swirling black clouds up to my knee. Then and there, I thought that I must be walking in clouds (not in heaven but on earth; while it was white up there, it certainly was black down here on the ground!).Yes, on the very same night, the CCTV newly built headquarter had one of its building burnt too, for the same reason, firecrackers.
I had flown in clouds but had certainly not walked on one before. To survive to tell about it is quite something :-) I figure not many have had this experience either. It is part of a life in transition. Just like when one flew through the clouds. One has to rise above it or below it to see clearly. It is part of traveling. For those who opted for traveling as a lifestyle, one continuously found enjoyment but not necessary meaning. In the last decade, traveling has been a prominent activity for me. I found myself across the entire world, covering 7 continents, hundreds of cities . It was pure leisure and none of the trips are work related. How did I do it? I have no clear idea. With a bit of money and luck, I suppose. The where, what, who & how of it all are not that difficult to answer. But the why, that’s another story. Oh, I enjoyed them all, but why is a bit more complicated.
Since the millenium began, life has been a series of travels for me. I blogged about them in the early part of this decade. And then after 2005, I stopped writing about my trips. As some of you might have read before, I don’t enjoy writing that much. I wrote simply because I had something to share or say. Not because I enjoyed the process of writing. After almost 4 years of writing travelogs, I ran into writer's block. I simply stopped writing altogether. I was in transition. What? I don’t know. I did however continue writing emails to some people whom I care about. On a daily basis. And I did that well. It was during this time that they brought out in me what I had within and what was completely mine alone. I traveled within for the last 4 years. I discovered how I feel about myself; my life - my insecurities, my happiness, my distress, my hopes, me. I was in reality waiting to awaken. It’s as if I’ve been sleeping throughout within while I was out and about traveling in the world. As a baby, I learned motor and cognitive skills. Then I graduated from university and I worked to pay the bills. As I did that, I learned to survive in society. I then traveled the world to see thousands of people doing the same. I thought, hey, I’m pretty normal. Luckier than most, but still normal. Everyone has dreams and they live their dreams to the best of their capabilities. My dreams? Well, most didn’t realised. But I was blessed with opportunities others will never dream of in their lives. So, am I lucky or what?
My life is basically a series of travels. From where I was borned to where I was educated, I lived in different continents and woke up in places where 99.99% of the world population can only dream of. Am I satisfied with that? Contented? At times. Still, I’ve no idea why I was brought there. To what do I deserved this luck I’m having. What’s the so called God’s will? Why? I’ve questions I’ve yet found answers to. But I traveled regardless. And I tried writing about them. Clearly, I have yet make sense of them all. Or it, my life, that is. Do I need to make sense of it? No. Not where I’m in life right now. Although I do get the feeling I’m beginning to make sense of it, albeit slowly, bit by bit. I may have been an early adopter where technology is concerned, but I’m a late bloomer when it comes to life!
When I first graduated, I was looking forward to a normal life. You know, get married, have a family and that’s it! It didn’t begin or end up that way though, at least not yet, not now. So, I had my journeys across the world, seeing that most people have had a pretty routine and normal life. Ok, perhaps I’m not that normal, but hardly abnormal. Not ordinary but pretty extraordinary. So, I tried to appreciate that fact. Considering the dreams I’ve had, the calling I was entrusted with, I am highly unusual. So, perhaps I’ve had it the way it is, to tell a story. I hope I inspire with some of the stories I’ve told and journeys I’ve made. I hope while traveling and having my life in transition, I’ve fulfiled God’s assignement for me. I hope while life is in motion, while traveling in miles, it’s the journey that will define & make the end worthy.
P.S. For a different perspective of traveling itself, please fell free to check out my travelogs at Virtual Tourist and my personal site at SharrieShaw.com.
I love to travel when I can, but I spent the last five years in complete poverty so I didn't get the chance. Staying positive though, I'm a bit better off now and am planning a trip to someplace I haven't been. The problem is that travel can be so expensive, and that cheap ways of doing it are only known to insiders. But I love going to new places and being overwhelmed by something I had, until then, only read about.
Travel is the change in location of people on a trip through the means of transport from one location to another. Travel is most commonly for recreation (as part of tourism or to visit friends and family), for business or for commuting; but may be for numerous other reasons, such as migration, fleeing war, etc.
Travel may occur by walking or human-powered mode, or through mechanical vehicles, either as private or public transport. Travel may be local, regional, national or international. In some countries, non-local internal travel may require an internal passport, while international travel typically requires a passport and visa. The word originates from the Middle English word travailen ("to toil"), which comes from the Old French word travailler ("travail"). A person who travels is called a traveler (U.S.) or traveller (UK)..