Thursday, December 20, 2012

Penguins Be Trippin'....: The Prologue

PENGUINS MAKE ME HAPPY. I learned this early in my Antarctic expedition, but it became a theme throughout the rest of my voyage.  I chose to call the Antarctic portion of my blog "Penguins Be Trippin'...." because... well... see for yourself.

From the moment I began planning this vacation, nothing about it has been normal.  I don't know anyone else who has been to Antarctica (but see Chapter One).  When I told people I was vacationing on "The 7th Continent" - a dear friend pointed out that a trip to Antarctica is not so much a "vacation," as an "expedition" - most of them didn't think they'd heard me correctly.  A few would say, "Oh... nice...," I'd wait an average of five seconds, and then they'd add, "Wait... ANTARCTICA?!?!?"  Like me, most people don't know anyone who's ever ventured into the Antarctic Circle, so the natural question is "What made you want to go there?"  The natural answer for me is "Because it's there."

I purposely formed no expectations as I planned for and embarked on this expedition.  As with everything else in my life, I like to be surprised (and often am).  Since I approached the trip with no expectations, I saw things, enjoyed experiences, and forged genuine, what I hope will be lifelong friendships.  John Lennon said "Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans"; instead of making plans, I let Life happen. I think it went well.

It's been my goal for a long time to visit all seven continents (there's that number 7 again!).  With the conclusion of this trip, Africa is the only continent that remains.  So, I give you "Penguins Be Trippin'...." If nothing else, I hope you take away from this portion of my blog that (1) Antarctica is accessible and available to everyone, (2) everyone should make an effort to see the last unspoiled frontier on the planet before it's too late, and (3) penguins actually "be trippin'...."