The Flying Carpet – A Step Beyond

In 2005 I fulfilled my childhood dream of going to Timbuktu, a trip inspired by Richard Hallibuton’s book “The Flying Carpet – The Record of a Great Adventure”

In 2005 I fulfilled my childhood dream of going to Timbuktu, a trip inspired by Richard Hallibuton’s book “The Flying Carpet – The Record of a Great Adventure”

Since 2005 a lot has changed in the world…where before it was safe to travel off the beaten track, now you have to think twice, and then think again.  However, despite the threats – real or perceived, we all need to step outside our “comfort zone” now and again…

Whilst Timbuktu may be off-limits (according to the FCO), and with Al-Qaeda, Daesh/Isis etc. dominating the news, its enough to deter anyone from leaving the comfort of home!

But don’t be deterred from travelling, as by staying in your comfort zone, you’ll miss out on so much the world has to offer.

Travel brings you into contact with people who are not so very different from you or I. They have the same basic needs – food, shelter, jobs, money etc. – above all, people (in general) are not out to harm, but are more than willing to help.

In my travels, I have been shown extreme generosity and welcomed into homes by people who, quite often, could ill afford to put me up.

In some small way, the chance to travel allows me the opportunity to repay the kindness people have shown, by telling their story.

Travel allows that opportunity – to meet people, experience new cultures and to open your mind to new possibilities, so if you’ve got itchy feet, get out there and experience life.

Pico Iyer writing in Harper’s in 1993, said “I am simply a fairly typical product of a movable sensibility, living and working in a world that is itself increasingly small and increasingly mongrel. I am a multinational soul on a multinational globe on which more and more countries are as polyglot and restless as airports. Taking planes seems as natural to me as picking up the phone or going to school; I fold up my self and carry it around as if it were an overnight bag.”

Open your mind and the possibilities are endless.

Shaun Walbridge (January 2017)

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