31st: On travels and birthdays

I was a little scared of what my safari trip has done to me. I was afraid of going back home, going back  to work, scared shit that I won’t like it anymore, terrified with the thought that I would be making abrupt decisions of running away again like I did many times in the past when I was dissatisfied with my life. I was searching for beauty and happiness. And I found both in Tanzania.

I recently finished reading Milan Kundera’s The Unbearable Lightness of Being where he said that when man was kicked out of paradise, he was doomed to live his life in a straight line. The only way to go back to paradise is to walk around in circles and leave everything behind. I am toeing the straight line now and I have seen paradise in my last travel. So I asked myself, should I quit my job, sell everything I have, leave everything behind and join a volunteer group in Tanzania and then travel the world?

The answer is – No, I won’t. This time, I would not be running away.

I like my life now. It is beautiful and it is a consequence of the decisions and experiences I’ve made and had in 31 years. I am satisfied with it.

As for travelling, what  truly makes me happy when I travel is not ticking things off a list no matter how authentic or shallow it might be BUT recognizing that all of us, no matter where we live or what we do, are the same people who share the most basic human need – the need to be loved. When you realize that, you’d understand the world a little better and you can make meaningful connections. I think that is what travel and pretty much everything in life, is all about.


When I turned 30 last year, I wanted to write a blog about birthday thoughts and self reflections but I was overwhelmed (as usual). Yesterday I turned 31 and I decided that I won’t be overwhelmed anymore so that the next 31 years would include many blissful memories if not entirely problem-free (because that’s impossible!).

So starting on my 31st birthday I will:

  • Spend more time with myself and the things that makes me happy: travel, writing and dining
  • Keep my circle even smaller because I do not like engaging in shallow conversations
  • Work just enough to fulfill my responsibilities and not more that it’ll interfere with my private time
  • Weed out people I don’t really like and spend my money, time and energy on meaningful relationships
  • Forgive my love ones easily
  • Say what I think
  • Spend even less time on Facebook
  • Read more books
  • Do more safaris
  • Cycle more
  • Drink only good alcohol
  • Save up and eventually invest
  • Cry if necessary and not hold it
  • Try not to flare up easily
  • Say NO

So cheers to me and cheers to life. To end, I am sharing a quote from Anton Chekhov’s The Lady with a Dog:

“In reality everything is beautiful in this world when one reflects: everything except what we think or do ourselves when we forget our human dignity and the higher aims of our existence.”