In four hours, we will board a Qatar Airlines flight bound (eventually, 30 hours later) for home. Whoa. It feels like time has flown, like nine-months has passed in ninety days. But at the same time, when we think about landing in Nairobi back in August, it seems like years have passed since we began our journey.
It took us months to get ready for this trip. There was money to be saved. Jobs to quit. Families and friends to hug. Houses to pack. Blogs to set up. Equipment to buy. Bags to pack. Downsizing from our everyday life to two carry-on bags and two day-packs and (temporarily) cutting ties took time. Today, it took us all of two hours to pack everything we own and say our goodbyes.
A few months ago, we started to recognize that this day would come, but didn't know how we'd feel about it. Would we be sad? Not ready? Terrified of the real world? Excited? Satisfied?
Now that the end is near (or here) and cannot be denied any longer, we're a little mix of everything. Mostly, we're excited. To see family and friends again. To start the next journey, wherever that might be. We feel really good about how we've spent our time and can honestly say we have no regrets (but if we had a money tree and a teleporter, we'd be more than tempted to keep traveling).
The hardest thing is knowing what a rare opportunity this is, being able to completely check out of our "real" lives, put everything we own in a box and get to know the world without two-week time limits or competing priorities. This could and might be a once-in-a-lifetime thing. But we hope not. Our goal for rejoining reality is to find a balance between reestablishing roots and leaving room for exploration. It's the dream, but now that we have a taste, it feels achievable on some level. We've always been travel junkies, but this experience has put a new emphasis on quality over quantity.
Even though we are out of time, we are rich in experiences that will last us a lifetime... or at least until the next trip.
See you State-side!