You can choose the kind of traveller you want to be. You can choose to be a ‘stick in the mud’, or a ‘go-getter’. You can choose to live life to the fullest or hide away in the shadows. You only have one chance, so read this article to make sure you make the right choice and find out why travel makes you awesome!
It makes you sociable
When you spend so much time eating and drinking together as a group on safari, it is only natural that you will become a social butterfly. At first you may be a bit reserved, but after one or two sundowners, you will begin to relax and learn the fine art of making small talk fascinating. After all you will have so many amazing stories to tell about your adventures so far.
You become an easy conversationalist
Instead of hiding behind your drink at a bar, or staring at a newspaper at your local coffee shop, you will be used to striking up conversation with complete strangers about bugs without having to buy them a drink first. You will have so many stories to tell of your travels and hopefully you will have learnt the art of listening too…
It gives you confidence
Confidence is learned over a period of time and while on safari you will be given many opportunities to try all sorts of new things, like eating exotic foods, diving off cliffs, navigating rapids and conquering your worst fears. This will definitely boost your confidence so that when you find yourself in an awkward situation, you will be the first person to jump in with a great story (or useful implement) and save the day!
You become adaptable to change
One thing you are guaranteed on a safari is change. Change in the weather, tour routes, moods, animals, scenery, environment, health, delays, dodgy food and so much more. You learn the art of patience quickly and how to take a deep breath and know that this too shall pass. So when you are back in your hometown, shopping at your local café, a queue that winds all the way down the block means nothing to you. You will simply relax and take time to smell the roses.
It makes you adventurous
After sitting in your office for months on end without a tree or plant in sight, once you hit the road the first thing you will want to do is embrace nature and find out more about it. A tiny ant crossing your basin in the morning before heading off to work may have been squished in half a second, but once you get back from your travels and having learnt so much about nature, you will be building the ant a home next to your favourite armchair!
You become easy-going
After having a close call with a rhino that was going to stomp over you before breakfast during a leisurely morning walk, changing lanes in highway traffic becomes a breeze! You develop horns!!
Your friends will not believe you are the same person when you are at a braai and don’t even flinch when a flying cockroach smacks you in your face. You simply laugh hysterically and carry on turning the burgers without missing a beat. You will find yourself whistling while waiting for a parking place in the blazing sun because you will remember sitting in a 4×4 in the heat of midday patiently waiting for an elephant to drink from the watering hole. The rewards of waiting become endless.
You get smarter
If you can figure out a bucket shower without any instructions, consider yourself the ‘Macgyver of the bushveld’. Eventually you will be putting up tents with your eyes closed. Imagine how useful that will be if a tornado ever hits your house!
The list of innovative ideas you come up with are endless. For instance, you get home and your wife/husband starts complaining about something. Because you have learnt the art of survival, you simply grab a backpack and head for a day in the mountains. Problem solved.
You learn how to pack
The first time you pack for a safari, you will always end up with too much, but once you have been on your fifth one, you have it down to such a fine art that the flight attendants will think you are a businessman. If you forget to pack your toothbrush, a mere stick with a blob of toothpaste on will suffice and you will survive to live another day. The luxuries of curling irons and electric shavers will be a thing of the past and you may even go to work without make up, or even a shave. ‘Spontaneous’ will be your middle name as you pack for a weekend away in 20 minutes and even remember the toilet paper.
It makes you an awesome person to be around
Now that you are cool, calm, collected and tanned, you become an awesome person to hang around with. People will be drawn to you like those mosquitoes by the boma and instead of swatting them away, you will simply smile with your ‘stick-brushed’ teeth and say: ”Hi, I have travelled to Africa, what have you done with your life lately?!”