The will to find an adventure is often a greater challenge than finding adventure itself. It’s something that I am guilty of time and time again. We get into a routine, we stop doing things. It takes effort to find the will to have adventures in life, but when there is a will, there is a way. So often I hear people say ‘I wish I could do that’, when in truth they could do that the thing they talk about with a small amount of effort.
I’ve been living in Malta for a year and a half now, and for much of this time I’ve been guilty of not finding the will to find adventure. The traffic sucks and the areas I’ve been living in are rather built up… which are both excuses to not get outside and do what I love because there are ever so many beautiful and exciting places to explore. During the summer I still swam in the sea multiple times a week last year, but it’s quite different from pushing oneself throughout the day and climbing into your sleeping bag, exhausted and soaked in sweat – not that you have to do this for an adventure. All you have to do is spend a few hours doing something new and exciting, that reminds you that you are very much alive.
If I was to focus on the negatives of living in Malta and to find excuses for not having adventures, I would say that Malta is extremely small and overpopulated (both true), and I haven’t found the outdoor enthusiasts that I normally meet around the world. But these are excuses and it is my will to find adventure that is lacking. Malta still has so much to offer and rather than making excuses, I acquired Betty a few weeks ago who has helped me to make the most of Malta. Betty is a Mitsubishi Lancer that is almost as old as me! She makes a funny noise when she starts, the electric window controls are detachable, and the rubber seals hang out the doors, but she gets me from A to B and allows me find the beautiful outdoor places that I have been missing.
For the past four weekends I have been camping (thank you, Betty). Sitting out by a bonfire under the stars, cooking (vegetarian) sausages on the barbecue, is a way to spend an evening that makes me happy. The days were filled with swimming, exploring, a music festival, and a very painful jellyfish sting. All it took was Betty and a 25 euro tent to get outside. It was so simple to do, yet took an immense effort of committing to do so. So many things in life start in a similar way.
I remind myself now of several things relevant to me. I walked across Iceland with my brother despite never having undertaken a long walk nor being in great physical shape at the time. I cycled across Europe on an old bicycle despite not having been on a long bicycle ride and having a budget of less than 200 euros. I hitchhiked around Europe for six months despite the concept freaking the hell out of me… and it restored my faith in the beauty of people in this world. These are small things that matter only to me, but each one of them took a little mental commitment to make something memorable happen. So many of our obstacles in life are invisible walls that we construct within our mind. Going forward, I will seek to do as much as I can, in spit of all difficulties and obstacles (excuses).
What first? I will walk around Malta – or as much of it as I can manage in the 30 degree heat. Then I will move on from there.
Where is your will for adventure? What could you do to make your life more exciting? What’s really stopping you?