because pg 2 5-25-23

As much as I really enjoy planning a trip or an adventure, I fully feel that it is, typically, the Journey, rather than the Destination that makes things more interesting. However, it is usually the Destination that is the reason for the Journey in the first place, and so diminishing the importance of the Destination can also make the Journey feel a bit… pointless.
I mean, it would be hard to travel all the way to Paris for the first time and NOT visit the Eiffel Tower. Likewise, I don’t think that anyone who drives across the country to see the Grand Canyon ever feels that, upon their arrival, they should skip seeing the Grand view simply because they had ‘so much fun already’. But what happens when the Journey IS the Destination?
The simplest example of what I mean by this is climbing Mount Everest. Reaching the top of the mountain is clearly the Destination but the Journey to the top, and then back again, is the entirety of the experience and, typically, the primary thing that the climber remembers. Ask the climber about the view at the top and they will be able to respond with one word (AMAZING!) but ask the climber about getting to the top and 30 minutes later, you may still only be at Camp 1. Of course, most of us do not/will not climb Mount Everest, but even for those of us just taking a leisurely hike to reach a small peak; we wouldn’t keep going if we didn’t want to see the view.
I can remember a trip to Beijing wherein visiting The Forbidden City was the Destination for this day. The Forbidden City is an imperial palace with nearly a thousand buildings. And despite the throngs of people with entry tickets, it didn’t feel crowded… That is until I decided that I simply had to see the ancient (and most popular) throne of the Emperor in the Palace of the Supreme Harmony. Suddenly, I found myself standing amongst a mass of people who were steadfastly moving in a deliberate wave of motion that would, eventually, take me by the open door so that I could peak inside at the throne. I immediately had second thoughts about trying to see the throne, but it was too late to reverse my steps as more people had already filled the empty space behind me. The circle of movement grew tighter and tighter and soon I found that my body was actually lifted off the ground. I was scared and unsure about the whole experience but, I realized, that since I had wanted to see the throne, I was now along for the ride. My memory of the throne is that of a rather unassuming wooden bench. Of course, my memory of SEEING the throne also includes viewing the throne from my back, whilst my head was tilted to the left as I was carried by the door on the shoulders of a sea of people. Still, the view was better than when I went to the Louvre to SEE the Mona Lisa…
Jump! Jump!
Kathy Naumann, possessor of NATURALLY curly hair and the understanding that you can’t control everything!


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