The anticipation of leaving home engulfs me. I spend days and weeks in preparation for that moment when I step on to the plane. And as the engines roar and my seat rumbles and I think to myself, this is it, no turning back, let the adventure begin.
All the work I have done to reach this point is gone. The planning it took to get where I am fades away and all I can see is what’s ahead. I can barely sit still with the knowledge of what comes next. In a few short hours, I will be somewhere new.
I have traveled to many countries, each with its own flavor. There is no two that are quite alike. Every place has its own unique existence. The people, the language, food, the landscape, all have their own identity.
Some say that if you have been to one new country then you have been to them all. Instead, I think each should be treated as a singular experience, a new venture for your senses. And as I travel through the air I can feel myself drawing closer to that moment.
Nothing can prepare me for that first taste of the air. I can hardly wait.
When the plane lands I force myself to take my time. I let the masses rush for the door and I wait. Let them go, I want to savor this. When I step off the plane I want to drink it in slowly. I want to be embraced by the new and unexplored environment before me. So let them go, I will wait and take my time.
As I walk toward the exit I begin to feel the changes in the air. This new world is slowly leaking into the plane. I imagine it is seeking me out, trying to lure me out into its presence. And I give in. I plunge toward the door and hold my breath.
I step through the door.
All of a sudden, all that I am is overwhelmed. My senses are alive to all that is new. I feel like I have entered an unknown plain of existence and I must relearn the rules of the land.
I can feel the air slide across my skin. It tingles in response to the new atmosphere. All that makes up this new world is rushing around me. The moisture in the air soaks into my skin and I feel alive.
I breathe in.
I let my lungs fill until I can take no more. And I slowly exhale. The air tastes new. I feel like I have never actually taken a breath before. It feels foreign and strange.
My mind begins to register my surroundings. New sights, new voices, new people, new smells, a new world. My head spins as I am consumed. I’m in love.
At some point, the adventure must end. I adjust to my surroundings. I become comfortable with this new world. I find things that remind me of other places I’ve been, of food I’ve eaten, of other people I’ve met. But it remains special because very adventure is it's own. Embrace it.