How and why are we travelling? Is the world still scared, or are we ready to break free from the confines of confusion?
If this time of uncertainty has taught us anything it is to slow down, take a breath. Take your finger off the trigger. We seem to be so obsessed with capturing every moment with our cameras or cellphones, that more often than not we may actually miss out on the living part of life. Not every moment needs to be immortalised in a digital photograph. Sometimes it’s okay to just be.
Being a travel writer and photographer this might be the hardest thing for my brain to grasp. It is nearly impossible not to pick up my camera when my eyes spot the most beautiful of moments that could be spectacularly encapsulated in a rectangular frame. I see the world through my viewfinder and have an intense need to share each special moment with the same world I am so enamoured with documenting. What if a moment passes by without being recorded? Did it really happen? If you didn’t post it to Instagram, were you even there? The pressure is insurmountable and the anxiety overwhelming. When did a fun pastime become an obstacle to living a normal life? (Yes, I recently watched The Social Dilemma on Netflix, so sue me).
The anxiety and pressure and snaps and chats and likes and shares and shot after shot after shot of dopamine was mounting to a deafening crescendo.
And then, for a brief moment of absolute clarity, it stopped.
All of a sudden the world was in lockdown and for a short moment everything was a bit more quiet. I fled the busy city to a quiet farm with my husband, brother and parents. We spent our days looking at nature, cooking together and talking. Wow. Talking to each other. When did that become a rarity? We took the dogs for walks and answered emails only when we felt like it. It was bliss.
Everything had come to a standstill. And the world was a strange place. But only for us humans.
In Namibia, the Okavango River is still flowing in the same direction. The wind still rustles through the leaves of the tallest jackalberry tree and the elephant still comes down to the water’s edge to quench his thirst. To him the world spins on the same axis and nothing much has changed. It is only our realities that have shifted. Our perception of the universe altered.
Where we react through artificial face coverings and our moods are determined by the ebb and flow of ‘positive’ or ‘negative’ statistics on a human-made list, nature goes on and nothing much has changed.
There are fewer engines that disrupt the gentle rhythmic pulse of mother earth. There are less tyres on gravel roads, less spews of gas from flying tin cans and less feet on the ground that leave behind a carbon footprint we could never erase no matter how many extra trees we plant. But there are still moments that leave you in awe of a world so beautiful and precious that it is worth fighting for. That is worth learning from and preserving for a generation that will maybe know or maybe not know what it was like to live in fear of not seeing a spectacular sunrise in the morning… with an elephant silhouette to reiterate the sound knowledge that today I get to start and hopefully end my day in the majesty of Africa’s version of nature…
There are so many reasons why Namibia is the perfect destination to travel to, despite the confusing times. Enormous amounts of beautiful and pristine SPACE, a low population density and strong COVID measures in place. We’re getting ready to welcome you back to our wild land of endless horizons. Our government has recently announced a tourism restart plan which will allow visitors from all over the world to travel to Namibia. All you will need is a 72 hour negative PCR test result!
We can’t wait to welcome you back.
Namibia is ready for you.