“A Mind That Is Stretched By A New Experience Can Never Go Back To It’s Old Dimensions” – Oliver Wendell Holmes
We dream dreams, we wish wishes and we make plans. Do all these come to fruition? How far do we go to ensure they come to fruition? Do we pursue these with everything in us or do we just neatly perch them on a side-board to be dealt with later? Well, the answer to this must have everything to do with the limiting factors around us; things like finances, priorities, the time and many other reasons.
I have many of those dreams, hopes and ambitions. I want to be one of the best Knowledge Management Gurus Uganda and the East African region have ever had; I want to be a multi-billionaire; a best selling author; a great scholar; a source of hope for the destitute and underprivileged with all the blessings God will have bestowed on me…name it!!! However, of these dreams and ambitions, travelling within Uganda and around the world comes almost top of the list. Yes – I hope that one day, I will have reached and visited at least a country or two on each of the 7 continents. However, in the next 5 years, on top of circum-navigating my beautiful motherland UGANDA, these are my Top 5 dream destinations world over (not in any necessary order):
Destination 1: The Masai Mara National Reserve – Kenya
This National Reserve is a beautiful Savana wilderness ensemble situated in the South-West of Kenya; shared with the Serengeti plains of Tanzania. This means you can have The Mara experience either in Kenya or in Tanzania. I hope to visit via Kenya because therein in the trip, I plan to visit a couple of friends in Nairobi and check on my god-daughter Naya. My love for The Mara started as far back as when I first had the opportunity to Watch The Lion King. I was taken aback by the implications of the how vast and beautiful Mufasa and Simba’s Kingdom were. Also, in one of the movie scenes a good character Mufasa was killed during one of nature’s finest spectacles to behold – The Great Wildebeest Migration. This is the biggest animal migration in the world that is witnessed annually . It consists of Wildebeest, Zebras and Gazelles moving in an anti-clockwise direction between the Serengeti and The Mara; all for the intention of chasing the rain. I like to say that these animals follow “where the grass is greener” and present to us a beautiful display while at it. I hope one day soon to be a witness to this magnificent show-case.
Destination 2: The Kingdom of Bhutan;
I have always been fascinated with the ways of the Monks and everything to do with their life in the Monasteries. They seem to be one of the few people on earth that have intentionally maintained the ancient ways of life that preserve the body, the mind and the soul. This involves: 100% clean eating, mind cleansing through meditation, living a simple pomp-free life, a life filled with peaceful co-existence with one’s neighbour and importantly preservation of the environment.
The Bhutan Kingdom is neatly placed on the Himalayas Mountains on the eastern side. It is the second least populated country in the world right after the Maldives.
I hope to see the ancient but still very operational monasteries, delve into the country’s lush sun-tropical to alpine landscaping and as a lover of mountains, have the perfect vantage view point of the Himalayas mountains.
I hope to take this trip as I cross over into the 40’s; mostly because of what Bhutan Kingdom symbolises – peaceful existance, tranquillity, calmness and the beauty of God’s goodness. This is how I hope to cross over to the fourth floor.
Destination 3: The Cinque Terre – Italy
Cinque Terre (Five Islands) – one of UNESCO’s world heritage sightings; are a neat arrangement of 5 century-old villages neatly perched along the Italian Riviera coastline. The villages are: 1. Vernazza; 2. Manarola; 3. Riomaggiore; 4. Corniglia and 5. Monterosso Al Mare
Each of the 5 villages presents beautiful and enchanting colourful little houses, neatly manicured vineyards hanging along the steep terracing and the harbours are a fishing extravaganza; with a wide array of sea food culinary delights. The deep blue clear waters seem to be quite a sighting.
Something to look forward to is the hiking trails as you move from one island to another. The perfect way to complete this visit would be to sit down to a mean meal of pasta made with the region’s famous pesto; while staring into the sun setting on the horizon.
These villages are located in the North-Western part of Italy in a region called Liguria. This trip will be sugar, spice and everything nice…
PS: See one of my favourite blogger’s visit and experience of Cinque Terre https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4h3w-XSOl4w&t=573s
Destination 4: Machu Picchu – Peru
A hiker and mountaineer’s dream destination; although located on the other side of the world (from Uganda); Machu Picchu is that one place that keeps gonging in my head and in my mind. I actually came -this close – to going but my resources and priorities then couldn’t let me prosper.
Machu Picchu – one of the 7 wonders of the world – is situated along the Andes ranges in Peru. It is an ancient citadel-like arrangement that can only be accessed after a 4-day climb to the highest point that is 2,430 metres above sea level.
Machu Picchu presents a rich Inca history; with archaeologists theorising the fact that it was constructed for the Inca Emperor Pachacuti that reigned from 1438 to 1472. Machu Pichu is a symbol of Incan civilisation.
This might be number one of the 5 destinations for me to go to as it is the furthest and possibly has preparation logistics that need to be attended to as early as a year before-hand.
Machu Picchu will be one of the reasons I make my maiden visit to South America.
Destination Number 5: Uluru or Ayers Rock – Australia
This destination is on the far opposite side of destination number 4 from Uganda. Uluru as locally known is one of the hundreds of reasons I dream of visiting Australia.
Uluru or Ayers Rock (Ayer after a surveyor; Sir Willian Gosse sighted it in July 1873 and named it in honour of the then Chief Secretary of South Australia, Sir Henry Ayers ) is also a UNESCO heritage and is a large sandstone monolith formation located in the centre of Australia. It is situated in the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. On arrival in Australia, one would have to travel to a town called Alice Springs and then travel 335 km south-west to behold this red big spectacle. Uluru is notable for appearing to change colour at different times of the day and year, most notably when it glows red at dawn and sunset (Wikipedia, 2020).
It would be such a wonderful experience listening to the stories and folk tales as told by the natives; The Anangu people who conduct walking tours; telling all that there is to know about the area.
This beautiful behemoth would be worth an entire 30 hour journey from Uganda to Australia.
I pray that one day, I will be penning down here my actual experiences and many more in these wonderful places; God-willing!