Adventure  /ədˈvɛntʃə/

noun
an unusual and exciting or daring experience.
“her recent adventures in Italy”

verb
engage in daring or risky activity.
“they had adventured into the forest”

I was kind of feeling that I needed more of the above-mentioned “adventure”… and when you want something you somehow send some sort of crazy vibrations into the universe and before you know it, it’s happening…

Breaking a hip was an adventure!
(One that I will never repeat again!)

Getting a job managing hotel boats was an adventure!
Things break, shit happens, customers complain, your crew goes psychotic…
Maybe I’ll do it again.

Unemployment is always an adventure!

And then having casual conversations with friends can sometimes start the craziest adventures of all!!!
Which is why I find myself sitting at Schiphol Amsterdam airport, teddy bear on my side, quite relieved that today there are no fuel problems and my flight may actually take off…

“Can you be in Fiji in two weeks?”
Of course I said “yes!”
Who doesn’t want to go to Fiji? Who doesn’t want to sail?

But there’s always terms and conditions!
And to sail from Fiji to the US, I needed an American visa.
A visa that, despite months of preparation and no real reason, was denied to me last year.

I took a deep breath and started the application process all over again.
And once the first load of paper-work was complete, I discovered that the first visa appointment was only in September!!
The boat should be sailing into Hawaii in September!

I was about to give up when it suddenly occurred to me that European countries are smaller than African families.
So, I started a Belgian application too.
And in Brussels, if you’re lucky, you can get a next day appointment!

I jumped on a bus, booked a hostel, and walked into the appointment with a brave face (that screamed terror and fear of rejection).
But would you believe that this time I had a sailor interrogating me?
And without as much as looking at the forest worth of paper-work I had bought along,
She granted me a ten-year visa!
(That’s right, my gypsy soul no longer has any travel restrictions!)
Twenty minutes later, my flights were booked!

The week continued with more adventure:
Do you know that taking the garbage out of a very secure apartment and accidently locking yourself out can cost you five hours 365 euros?
Do you know how much stuff you can accumulate when you stay in a country for a few months?
Do you know that the visa collection point in Brussels is conveniently located as far away from public transport as one can possibly get?

I hitchhiked back to the Netherlands and despite the Belgians being described as “cold,”
I had the warmest company in less than a minute and a transition similarly awesome!
Back across the border, I was dragged off for dinner on a boat before just making the last train back to where my bicycle was stored.
Cycling home at 1am was an adventure in itself!

 

And then it was off to Germany to collect the “life” I left in Portugal last year!
A day in Amsterdam (And the optometrist for new glasses)
A day in Friesland (And the dentist to fix my broken tooth)
And now the airport…

My flight leaves in twenty minutes.
And after five months in the Netherlands, it’s very sad to be saying goodbye!
(Even if it is raining outside!)
From there it’s Helsinki.
And from there Hong Kong.
(Although with the riots this week and the airport closures this too may be an adventure!)
From Hong Kong I fly to Nadi (Fiji) and from Nadi I fly to Suva…

…And then?
Well this is where the new adventure starts!
Let’s hope I survive the flights, make my connections, and actually get allowed into the country!
Let’s hope the S/V Pacific Pearl arrives safely.
Let’s hope that all the adventures leading up to this adventure have been worthwhile!

Be careful what you wish for!
Life is one crazy adventure!

 


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