Virtues of Travel: Part 8
So what is Preparation’s greatest complement and necessary ally in travel? Yes indeed, Letting Go. It might seem a defeatist’s mentality at first, that after all that preparation at whatever level you chose, you must be prepared for all of it not to matter.
Despite a willingness or intention to just “go with the flow,” we tend to be creatures of comfort, planning, and structure. When things don’t go our way, emotions of frustration, anger, even a bit of sadness and depression easily takeover our outlook.
Preparation, as in training for an athletic event, gives us the skill set, know-how, energy, and strength to experience. Letting Go, allows us to experience whatever ends up coming our way. Preparation helps us build the ability to walk the path. Letting Go allows us to enjoy whatever journey that path brings.
Letting Go is thus a practice. Letting Go is something we learn how to do over time … how to have expectations, but to be willing for time to transform those expectations into the experiences that we need, and the life we are meant to live.
And while this might come off as a series of live-in-the-moment platitudes, I firmly believe in this practice, and I’m fully aware of how difficult it is to in-act. I know what frustration it can bring when time gets spent taking care of the unexpected or experiencing something we haven’t prepared for. But that frustration, that inability to let go, keeps us from the true journey.
We want to prepare, so that we can leave home, let go, and enjoy the road we’re on, being patient so that we can relish in the surfaces and the deep beauty of the places to which we travel and to the places with which we connect.