When I was a kid, I dove into the deep end of a swimming pool before my very first swim lesson. When the lifeguard pulled me out I was totally naive to the severity of what I had just done. Sputtering and happy, I asked my mom if I was swimming.
“Did you see?!”
Sometimes, I feel as if my backpacking trip was of a similar vein. When you tell a stranger at a bar: “I backpacked Australia alone for nine months when I was 18,” it all sounds very impressive (or a little like a pregnancy cover-up). But to the people who knew me as a backpacker, I looked a little like I did when I was drowning toddler: too young to know better.
Drop Bears & Hoop Snakes was born out of four years of silence. I’ve been back in Canada four years, and not once have I sat down to seriously write about my experiences.
The shark accident, the cow accident, as well as that time I landed in Alice Springs without a water bottle, were all embarrassing details. A diploma and a stint at university was enough time for me to put some distance between where I am now, and that time I was flailing chum. If I told those stories four years ago, I might not have been so honest.
“Did you see?!”
I didn’t want to brag too much, either.
The truth is that travelling isn’t always romantic. Buying a plane ticket doesn’t guarantee that you’ll pick the right major when you start university. But if you remain humble and willing to share, and most importantly, willing to laugh at yourself, you’ll gain the single most important valuable key to everything in the universe, ever:
That, I can promise you.
Oh, and if you buy me enough drinks at a bar, there’s a chance you might also hear about my tour of Europe... while I was in Australia…
No promises on that one, though.
Thank you Dear Readers, for all the love and support.
Cara enjoys long romantic walks down the makeup aisle, and what hasn't killed her has made her chilopodophobic. Once she was a backpacker, but now she prefers her morning shower to be cockroach-free. An aspiring novelist and comedian, she can often be found making bad puns on social media.