Wednesday 30 August 2023

Travel Apprehension

    In the winter of 1987 I had a lot of overtime I had earned the previous summer at Forestry that I had to use or loose.  It had to be taken before the end of March, so I decided to travel to Mexico, Guatemala, and Belize and see some of the many Mayan ruins.  My wife, who I heavily depended upon for help with foreign languages and international travel experience, couldn’t go because she was teaching, so I was going to these foreign countries by myself and I was filled with apprehension.   Here is what I wrote in my diary:

As my day of departure grew nearer, so did my panic.  Would I be able to take care of myself for 22 days in a non-English speaking country?   Would I end up spending the three weeks hold up in a hotel room in some obscure Mexican town, with diarrhea?  Would I die?

My apprehension increased with each relatable story I heard on the media.   I turned on the TV in time time to see a movie about the Florida airline flight that crashed into the Potomac River, killing all aboard,  Gulp.

On CBC Radio, I heard about the many workers who had died while working on the Ocean Ranger Drilling Rig, many of whom had a premonition of the disaster before leaving that week, Gulp.

One of those workers had just cleaned his garage, and yard, “like never before”, so that everything would be in order, Gulp, double gulp:  I had just cleaned the barn for the goats, so everything would be in order before I left.

My wife had been extra nice as the day of my leaving crept closer, and we had several get-togethers with friends before my departure.  To me they seemed like the “Last Supper” to me.  Do they know something, I don’t?  Gulp.

But then I remembered, that many of those friends had given me money so I could buy and bring back earrings and pottery for them from Mexico, and that made me realize that they certainly expected me to survive.  Their expectations relieved my apprehensions and gave me optimism about my upcoming trip, Whew.

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