I could still feel the exhilaration I felt when my plane took off from the runway of the Cebu Mactan International Airport. I was closing my eyes, almost exhausted both from hospital duties and travel preparations, but breathing loosely at last, when the ascend of the plane pinned me to my cushioned seat. It almost felt like I was flying.
Looking back, I find this vacation to be one of the best. I smile when I remember walking at the Central Park in New York with Jenda and SS. I treasure those moments when we were just looking at the harbor, sipping coffee, while enjoying the view of Jersey City on the other side. I could never forget the breathtaking view of the Empire State Building from where I was standing at the Rockefeller Center. I smile when I remember visiting Rubai in upstate New York and witnessing her evolution into a mother, and Chris into a father, both deeply caring towards the life they brought out into this world, Kharisse.
In the Everglades, I saw a lot of animals which I only saw in books and in Animal Planet, those which I didn't know existed, like the Anhinga bird. I will always remember and treasure those memories of lounging around the Disney Theme Parks and I will never forget the Fast Track at the EPCOT because I lost my Dockers shades somewhere in its test tracks. B gave me those sunglasses and until now, I haven't told her about it yet. Maybe when I come home or maybe she'll know ahead of time when she reads this.
Yes, homeward bound I will be, very soon, and though I cringe at some aspects attached to it, I would like to believe that travel has molded me into someone a bit more learned than when I left it. Traveling exposes us to a lot of different cultures and to worlds which we never know existed. Though only for a short period of time, travel exposes us to the most extreme of conditions and even to the most extreme of emotions and puts everything that defines us an individual to a test. Travel is not always a search for perfection, but about encountering eccentricities we can tolerate and embrace. Or else we wouldn't have left home at all to explore the world outside it.
In a search for variation, we explore, and take that big step to leave our comfort zones, and come back appreciating it and valuing it even more. Travel therefore, is pretty much like life itself. No matter how we orient ourselves with maps and brochures, and even if we seek the help of the GPS, there will always be unexpected detours. Travel, like life, is twisted, you never know what surprises await you in the next stop. All we can do is roll with the punches, and think that tomorrow is another day. All we can do is live this life the way we think we should. It doesn't come with a manual anyway, or a GPS for that matter.