Commentary on the Importance of Adventure

One of the down sides to the aging process is the tendency to exclude adventure from our lives. When younger, experiencing something new was a goal that most of us enthusiastically embraced. Who didn’t want to experience the joy of pushing the outside of life’s envelope?

And that is precisely why travel has always played a central role in my life. I mentioned earlier that Mo and I took our two grandkids to Yellowstone Park where we went snowmobiling last month. The temperature at night ranged from 10 to 20 below zero, and there were moments when I worried that I would have to apologize to their parents for having their frozen toes or fingers amputated.

While I’m obviously just kidding, each cold morning was greeted with a cloudless sky where we were guided on snowmobiling trips through incredibly beautiful forests. There were times where we had to stop to allow buffalo to pass within ten feet of us, and that was followed by trips through geyser basins that were stunningly beautiful.

And then there was the trip last week that Mo and I took to Belize where we obtained our scuba diving certification. The approximate size of Vermont, Belize is a fascinating country that contains large jungles bordering on the pristine beaches of the Caribbean.

We went scuba diving several different days. We descended to 60 feet below the surface as we observed magnificent coral reefs occupied by various species of turtles and marine life ranging from stingrays to barracudas.

But that wasn’t all. While Mo decided to go scuba diving one more time, I accompanied several other individuals on a mountain climb that led to rappelling down a shear 100 foot cliff next to a beautiful waterfall. The  excruciating climb took me to over a thousand feet above sea level, and it involved massive steps followed by a series of ropes needed to conquer what looked like inaccessible openings in the jungle. Quite frankly, I was so exhausted from my attempt to resemble the legendary Sir Edmund Hillary that I jokingly said that I didn’t really care if I lived or died before my descent down the very scary wall.

But the day didn’t end there. We were next transported to an area where we used a collection of zip lines to zoom through the magnificent trees. There were nine separate zip lines, connected by towers 50 to 70 feet above the jungle floor. The longest line took us on a speed that exceeded 50 miles an hour, and I needed help on that one given that I nearly pulled my right arm out of socket when I stupidly mishandled the rope line to slow down when approaching an earlier destination.

There was more, but I think I whetted your appetite. Keep Belize on your radar screen for future trips.