It's go time. 5 hours left until I take off for yet another flight, this time to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Am I excited? Yes.
But everyone keeps sending me messages about being safe and warning me to register with the embassy and take a knife and bring pepper spray. Now I'm getting scared.
Scared is a good thing. Scared will keep me safe, if I am more aware of the risks then I'm more alert and less likely to be taken off guard. I'm not the person to walk with an open knife in my pocket and my passport duct-taped to my waist, but I am the person to be vigilant. You have to be. I'm a single white girl traveling alone, I'm not stupid and I know that I am a target.
Maybe that is part of the fun. It is very possible that the risk of traveling to far flung destinations that no one has heard of (like Djibouti) is part of the motivation to go. I like to think that my motivation to travel is to experience new cultures, view new ways of thinking and seeing incredible parts of the magnificent Earth. But the other part of it is to push my limits - emotional, physical and mental all rolled into a challenge of just surviving my experiences and coming out unscathed.
It's risky. I know it is. And I know my loved ones are just trying to keep me safe. But man, the nightmares I've been having about the horror stories of raping, pillaging and roving bands of marauders hasn't been conducive to resting before travel.
The planet awaits. So seize the day and book your next trip. Go to Gabon or Indonesia or Uruguay...... or Ethiopia.