Sunday, June 22, 2008

“I called to the other men that the sky was clearing, and then a moment later I realized that what I had seen was not a rift in the clouds but the whi

“I called to the other men that the sky was clearing, and then a moment later I realized that what I had seen was not a rift in the clouds but the white crest of an enormous wave.” – Ernest Shackleton

Those old explorers were crazy guys. It's great to look back at how they took on challenges paving the way for those that were to follow in their footsteps ...yea whatever, don't kid yourself. They were more likely nutters that had got themselves into some kind of compromising situation and taking a trip to a place on earth far away from those 'looking' for them made total sense. Just have a look at Uncle Jan Van Riebeek and his sort. He took the option to head down to Cape Town to get out of a tight spot. He was supposed to go to India after becoming a nuisance on his own continent and when he stopped off Table Bay he recognised an opportunity right away, so convinced the chaps back home that it would be lucrative for them if he set-up a replenishment station at the tip of Africa. From then on it was Castles, wine and shooting the locals for sport.

So it's been happening for a long time now and one would think the earth has been explored with not much left to do out there that has not been done. Some people think up some daft idea's to get some recognition, but one crazy adventurer sticks out above them all. His exploits over the years have been just too hectic. A tough South African lad who now lives in Europe when he is not out alone on the planet. Mike Horn kicks any other modern adventurer's ass all over any terrain or challenge available. I can't see who can even come close (or has done in the past) to such incredible feats. Not sure who has even attempted anything like it. He always goes solo, unsupported and with no motors. One of those trips involved completing the full length (40 700km) of the 0 latitude - the Equator! Another was traversing the full length of South America, including the Amazon. You can't imagine how crazy this is and his anecdotes are hard to comprehend. I reckon these guys are incredible in many ways. I think far too extreme for their own good. They teach us a good lesson though. They take themselves so far out of their comfort zone and sometimes even survive. Living your plush lifestyle may be the goal in your life to make you most happy. If it is, you will not ever feel like you have reached your goal. Humans are not designed that way. We need to 'suffer' at times. I doubt you have too many opportunities to mistake a Tsunami like wave for a bit of light breaking through the clouds, or have to hide from an Amazonian tribe that are hunting you down to kill you. Try getting out in the elements once in a while though. You WILL be amazed how much more alive you will feel than if you just stay indoors all the time.

No comments: