Thursday, 2 June 2016

Travel No More

Katherine is on her way to Dublin today. I envy her. Ireland is one of the places on my bucket list. I would love to spend a week or two on that isle of emerald green. A few days in Dublin, a few days in Belfast, a week or so wandering around from town to town, exploring the ancient, enjoying the new, trying pubs and ales everywhere I went.

I am still in love with the excitement of travel, the adventure of seeing new places. I still have many places on my list which I have not yet seen, and would like to see. Ireland, Australia, Southeast Asia, China, north and central Africa, South America. If I could, I would love to take a cruise around Cape Horn, to see the Tierra Del Fuego.

There are so many places, and so little time. I've had the good fortune to see a great many already, to go places most people never see, to wander lands touched only by a handful of people. Yet still I have this thirst within me, this unquenchable desire to see just one more place, to explore once again. It may seem selfish, or even ungrateful for all that I have seen and done, but I cannot deny this feeling within me.

Even when I cannot travel, I can still adventure, still explore nearby. Yesterday, for example, I was invited to a friend's place for dinner. Rather than take my truck, I took my power wheelchair. I have to get used to using it more, as I know I will eventually be forced that way. After a terrific dinner and a lovely walk with my daughter, Kate, I headed home. Only this time, rather than take public transit, I used my PWC for the whole trip, a voyage of almost two hours.

I rolled my way through and out of downtown Calgary, across the Bow River. I took the riverside pathway as far as I could before turning up the hill towards home. I chewed through 50% of my battery on that hill alone, a frighteningly slow grind up a sharp, unforgiving angle. When I got home, I felt a sense of relief, and of accomplishment. While the world is slowly closing in on me, I don't have to live like it. While my explorations and travels are not far away, my mind and my will can still take me to places I have not seen before.

I am slowly becoming trapped by this world of ALS, living with a monster which works continually to restrict my life. At the same time my mind and my will continue to be alive and free. It's hard and it hurts, not to be able to travel as I once did. I am compelled by circumstance. So I do what I can, take what I can, and live what I can. But I would really like to go to Ireland.

1 comment:

  1. Richard, I had the same wish. Here's how I dealt with it.

    Best wishes on this tough journey we both are on,