I have traveled the whole Philippines end to end and 90 percent of the time I was lost.
I do have a GPS with me, actually… I have two. My main one is the Google maps app on my phone and my back up is a Garmin Car Navigator. They do the job well most of the time… maybe you’re wondering as to how I still get lost. Well, the real problem is me and my curiosity.
I have lost count as to how many times I have steered away from my target destination. When something interesting catches my peripheral vision I often check it out and investigate. Is it scary? Sometimes… Not knowing where you will end up is both exciting and nerve-wracking. The fear comes from the unknown, while the excitement comes from the discovery.
Because I choose to get lost… I have discovered beautiful places and met interesting people. Encounters that I can honestly say I wouldn’t have had if I just followed the right path. I find these kinds of experiences refreshing and authentic, when you see this spark of interest on peoples eyes as they ask you how you ended up there paired with their electrifying excitement to take you to amazing places, then you will know what I’m talking about.
But there are also a lot of times when the possible pay-off is not worth it, wherein the most logical thing to do is to not push through and just go back. Deciding whether to go or not is a matter of balance of those two and tons of self-awareness. I know myself well enough to force myself to stop and re-evaluate what I’m doing because as you go deeper into the unknown the higher the risk. Do I regret those instances when I decided to go back? Not really. It does make you wonder and ask the “What if I pushed through?”. But you also should always remind yourself that there are still other experiences out there wherein I don’t have to risk it all.
Would I encourage people to do the same thing? Honestly… Yes. Why? Because most of the time the payoff is worth it and there are a lot of good people out there who will help and even welcome a lost stranger. Who knows you just might find what you are looking for… by getting lost.
Next time I will write about the moment when I knew I had to stop but didn’t, because going back was not an option anymore.