I think there is a tarantula in the shower I told R as I tracked water across the concrete floor. Good, he replied, bring it here and let it bite me, then take me to the hospital. R was suffering from an acute sunburn brought on by our early-romance stupidity. Two months after we first met we flew to central America, rented a canoe and stayed out too long on a very beautiful high-altitude lake. Our skin was burnt, dry and quickly abandoning us in sheets. I ignored the tarantula and R’s sunburn and went to sleep. I wasn’t much worried.
A few years before that trip, before meeting R, I sold my Datsun B210 for $500 and bought a one-way ticket to Europe. With my remaining $250 I intended to realize my dream of spending 2 years in Italy. True, my flight landed 750 miles from my destination, I had no place to live and no job. I wasn’t much worried.
This morning I seriously looked at the Viking Riverboat Cruise brochure, every page, every trip.
Last year I led us through a mountain range in truly horrible conditions. I posted a light-hearted message to Instagram with a photo that clearly showed our location. I had thought, if we don’t make it, this will be a clue when someone comes to find us. When we emerged from temporarily resting behind a rock-tower we couldn’t see a path, could barely move forward against the wind. Four hours later my water-logged phone died, along with its camera and lifesaving map. R thought we might not make it, I thought we probably would. I suppressed my worry and kept moving.
With a Viking River Cruise You’ll travel with ease, unpacking just once and enjoying the ever-changing scenery along the banks as you are gently carried aboard an elegant, intimate ship to your next destination.
Where is the adventurer who lived in this body; what is she thinking about this woman looking at a cruise brochure?
I found my younger self and we had a talk. She wasn’t judgmental at all, not about the cruise, not about any aspect of my life. The self of my 20s simply wants me to go, to pick a place and go. She wonders if I need all the plans. True, a cruise ship takes care of all the logistics, she tells me, but another solution is not to prepare so much. She floats the option of the “just get there” plan. Find a good vacation spot, where people hang out as well as go on adventures. Get there, then figure it out. Don’t worry so much. The Viking boats will wait.
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