The Adventure of a Lifetime: Part Five
How many things have changed in the past two decades — and how some of the most important things haven’t.
NOW, TWO DECADES later, I reread these words, relive these memories. In many ways, that world seems irretrievably remote. So much has changed – in my life, and in the life of Pakistan. I wonder what has become of the shopowners and innkeepers, the fruit-sellers and field-workers. I remember the carpenter, the warm clasp of his hands, and wonder if our family photo still hangs proudly between San Francisco postcards on his rough wall.
But despite all the changes, the profound essence of that trip – the adventure of it – doesn’t feel remote at all. I reread these words, relive these memories, and Pakistan surrounds me; I am immersed in it. Images from that long-ago journey swirl around me and my universe quickens.
Isn’t that really the point? Adventure sharpens our sense of the world; it deepens our appreciation of the preciousness of every day and every encounter, of the vast diversities of the planet we inhabit, and of the human commonalities – possibilities — we embody.
And that defines for me the fundamental allure and amazement of the journeys that Geographic Expeditions — and all its brethren in the Adventure Collection — have been concocting for 30 years. In those decades, the company’s offerings have expanded exponentially, from a half-dozen treks in the early years to more than 150 trips now, ranging from trekking in Peru to festival-reveling in Bhutan, expedition ship cruising in Antarctica to lion-tracking in Africa.
But one thing hasn’t changed: Wherever you go with GeoEx, as with any of the companies in the Adventure Collection, however you travel and whatever you do, you’re offered an irreplaceable gift: to risk yourself in ways you normally can’t, to fill in the blanks on your mental map, to stretch the boundaries of your mind and your heart, to become a bridge between your world and the once unimaginable unknown at the other end of the world, your world.
Two decades ago, when I signed up for that Karakoram trip, I just wanted an adventure. I had no idea that I would still be riding that highway twenty years on.#####
For information about Geographic Expeditions’ more than 150 journeys around the world, visit the company’s website.