The Road Home

Trip Start May 22, 2009
1
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Trip End Feb 16, 2010


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Flag of Canada  , Ontario,
Tuesday, February 16, 2010

I feel as if things are in a fast rewind, as if everything we’ve done on this trip is coming unraveled. 

A mere 2 hour plane hop has taken us back to Turkey.  When we first arrived in Turkey, it was a month before Christmas, and has taken us 3 months to get to Cairo.  How is it that the same distance can be covered in hours?  On the next flight, another mere 4 hours and we were flying right back over Manchester - our starting point 8 months ago. 

All gone in a few hours. 

So much time has past.  We’ve seen so much and changed so much.  I can’t believe that such a journey can be made in such a short amount of time without seeing or doing anything.  It’s as if everything is being erased and left in the exhaust wake of the airplane.  Half a continent in a single in-flight movie. 

Only another few hours and the Atlantic will be behind, and we’ll be back in Canada. 

In less than a day we’ve gone from Middle East to West, 36 degrees to minus 6 degrees, 3rd world to 1st world, Muslim to Christian, Arabic to English, falafel to Subway…

You can’t appreciate such distances until you’ve traveled them by land.  Throughout our entire trip, we covered 32 878.02 km.  Land travel alone took 22 924.39 km of bus, train, boat, car, and of course bicycle (6506.6 km pedal-power).

I hope beyond anything else, that every one of those kilometers will remain burned on my heart.  That I will be forever changed by what I’ve seen and experienced.  If not, why bother?  And as romantic as such a trip sounds, there was a LOT of bother.  But it was worth it.  It’s what I wanted, what I planned for, what pushed me through the bother and on with everyday. 

So, now what?

I’m really struggling to find the next journey worthy.  Why does returning home take the sweet taste of travel out of my mouth?  Why do I feel that there is nothing to look forward to?  That everything is over?  Will I ever have the need or desire to get out my camera again?  What could be photo-worthy at home?

Even as I think these words, I know their not right.  This is not the person I want to be.  This is not the rightful attitude of someone who’s traveled such distances, is it?  I need to look forward and not live in the past.  I can always plan another trip, but more importantly, I need to be content wherever I am.  To look for the adventure in everyday. 

As each part of this 8 month journey begins to come full-circle in my mind, I’m reminded of some inspiration I found in the before ever leaving home.  Perhaps it will help me now as well.  A certain song by Nickleback.

My best friend gave me the best advice
He said each day's a gift and not a given right
Leave no stone unturned, leave your fears behind
And try to take the path less traveled by
That first step you take is the longest stride

If today were your last day
And tomorrow was too late
Could you say goodbye to yesterday?
Would you live each moment like your last?
Leave old pictures in the past?
Donate every dime you have?
If today was your last day

Against the grain should be a way of life
What's worth the prize is always worth the fight
Every second counts 'cause there's no second try
So live like you're never living twice
Don't take the free ride in your own life

If today were your last day
And tomorrow was too late
Could you say goodbye to yesterday?
Would you live each moment like your last?
Leave old pictures in the past?
Donate every dime you have?
If today was your last day

Would you call old friends you never see?
Reminisce old memories?
Would you forgive your enemies?
Would you find that one you're dreamin' of?
Swear up and down to God above
That you'd finally fall in love?
If today was your last day

If today was your last day
Would you make your mark b mending a broken heart?
You know it's never too last to shoot for the stars
Regardless of who you are
So do whatever it takes
'Cause you can't rewind a moment in this life
Let nothin' stand in your way
Cause the hands of time are never on your side

If today were your last day
And tomorrow was too late
Could you say goodbye to yesterday?
Would you live each moment like your last?
Leave old pictures in the past?
Donate every dime you have?
Would you call old friends you never see?
Reminisce old memories?
Would you forgive your enemies?
Would you find that one you're dreamin' of?
Swear up and down to God above
That you'd finally fall in love?
If today was your last day


I don’t want to go out on my last day thinking like this.  Every second counts, no matter where I am.  I need to look for the good in everything because there is no second chance - no way to rewind and try again.  The hands of time will keep on ticking wherever I happen to be.  It’s up to me to live each moment like my last.  To forget the fear of returning home.  Strange, I never thought that this would be a first step I had to force myself to take. 

Onto the next journey.  Of life.  Wherever it may lead. 


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Comments

Sarah Chidley on

Sharilyn, my word. I know I don't have facebook anymore, so haven't had the chance to send you messages but I have been following this blog and your journey was just incredible. As you said, you are on to the next journey - perhaps it may not be as exhilarating as the previous, but you'll find ways that make it special and important.
Thank you so so much for sharing with me such an amazing 8 months, and I wish you the best. I've always looked up to your open-mindedness, your creativity, and innovativeness. I know whatever you decide to do with your next chapter will be marvelous!

Thanks Sharilyn.


Sarah

kittnrob
kittnrob on

Hullo Sharilyn
It's been a long time since i have been browsing around on travel pod but today someone commented on a pic that i also commented on and there you were in my thoughts. I loved reading all of your travels on this fantastic adventure you were on so when i took a peek in on your account I was secretly hoping to see you on a new jaunt with a fresh read for me!!
What are your next travel plans??
I am in school this year taking a six month course for esthetics (planning to open my own spa around this time next year...so excited about it) so we don't have anything really exotic on the travel agenda but we are sneaking off to Mexico for April once I am out of school. Looking forward to the trip!
Hope you and Brian are both doing well, that 2010 was good to you and wishing you both a happy new year and a 2011 that is filled with new adventures for you both!
Katherine :o)

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