I closed my eyes and I saw that day. It is a day we are yet to see, but I’ve seen it. We sat outside in the cold with only the fire as our warmth, and we told stories of our times in Iceland when we slept in that hotel made only of ice and of that time we took a road trip across Europe. I played my guitar to the tunes of Don Williams and Kenny Rogers while your voice made the birds on the trees around us jealous. I stroked your silky grey hair that rested beautifully on your shoulders, and I watched you blush. It’s been over 50 years of marriage and you still blush whenever I play with your hair. Then you said to me, “Chu, how did we get here?”
I dropped my guitar beside the basket of fruits we brought with us and I said, “Well, we are camping on some hill in Senegal. We took a road trip from Lagos. We passed through those terrible borders with those greedy custom officials but you kept laughing at how fun the trip was even when the bus was nothing but a pain in my this little behind. Finally we found ourselves in this beautiful lake resort in Touba, and we decided to go camping on the hill down the road.”
You listened to me talk as though what I was saying was the most important thing in the whole wide world. You’d blink your eyes as I talk, just the way I like it. Ever since I told you your eyes sparkle and the stars smile whenever you blink like that, you’ve never stopped blinking. It has been your way of telling me that I am your stars and your sparkle.
And when I was finally done, you said, “That’s not what I meant, Chu. Of course I know how we got on this hill. I mean, how did we get through life living each moment in the now, with so much love, passion and fun.”
I pulled you closer to me. “Remember what I told you on the night we got married?”
“I told you that life is a gift we only get once. I told you that you were not only my wife but my travel buddy, risk partner, life exploring assistant and my co-host on our till-eternity show, ‘laugh till your till your butt hurts’. Remember when I told you that the greatest enemy of ‘great’ is ‘good’, and that we will never allow ourselves get comfortable because the beauties of life are on the other side of comfort. I told you that the best things of life are free, and that we’d spend each moment of our lives actually living. We promised ourselves that we’ll spread love, laughter and happiness to everyone we meet. We finally did what we said we would do, and we’ll keep doing it.”
You’ve asked me this question a million times over, and the answer has always been the same. Then you leaned on my shoulder and wrapped your right hand around my waist. And as I looked at the fire burning just in front of us, I knew that the fire of our love will keep burning till He calls us home.
If you enjoyed this story, then you’ll enjoy How Travel Can Make You Find Your Soulmate. Please leave a comment and let me know what you think.