Do you have a choice when you are out there, 39kms high, ready to jump out of a balloon? Well actually, no. You don’t have a choice. The balloon travels higher and higher, until it burns. You really don’t want to experience that.
So you have to jump. No chickening out. No cancelling the plans.
What does that teach us about traveling? Well, a lot. There is a lot of travel fear out there. People don’t dare to go to India because of the dirt and extreme chaos in the cities. Others will never go to Colombia because of the crime or fear of being kidnapped. South Africa: crime. Rio: street robberies. Antartica: cold. Japan: language. Birma: government restrictions. Mali: poverty. But you know, all these countries offer great opportunities for travelers. Birma is opening up for tourists, providing visa much easier and you already have ample of tours to choose from. India is extreme, but you can also call it a feast for the senses.
There was no option but to jump. This is his lesson to travelers with fear: buy that plane, train or bus ticket. Get your esta permit. As soon as you own that ticket, there is no way back. You just have to jump into the adventure called travel. And you will love it!
Trust me, fear is contagious and will always be around the next corner. But after you finally did travel to that ‘difficult’ country for the first time you will fall down on your knees, thank whoever you want to thank and smile from ear to ear: you are the traveler that crushed the fears and explored the world!