Recently, I traveled to Lomé, Benin Republic to participate in a week-long health conference. I was quite excited about the trip (I’m always excited about travelling), and equally excited about the conference; I’m very concerned about the health issues that affect West Africans. I got to my room, and absolutely loved it! My room was cosy with large windows that overlooked the beach, and the ocean. I opened a window, and felt the rush of the warm ocean breeze on my skin, it was incredibly relaxing. I stood by the window for a while, took a deep breath, and just knew that this would be another wonderful trip!
The following morning, I started the day with the hotel’s delightful breakfast buffet, featuring choice selection of fresh tropical fruits, freshly baked pastries still warm from the oven (croissants are my absolute favorites), an ample selection of cold cuts, and hot dishes. I felt almost intoxicated from the aroma of the freshly brewed coffee (I was told it came from Kenya!). After a “royal” breakfast, I headed off to the conference hall.
Day one of the conference was insightful, with knowledgeable speakers, who addressed health issues of great concern to majority of us West Africans. With day one concluded, I was glad to get back to my room, kick off the high heels I had been in all day, stretch out on the bed and relax for a bit.
Not feeling sufficiently relaxed on the bed, I went over to the window to savour the ocean view, and breeze, and recapture that feeling of relaxation I felt the day I arrived. This time, while standing at the window, I suddenly had a revelation, “wouldn’t it be nice to share this view and experience with someone”? I’m sure there have been times in your life when you watched a movie alone, attended an event, or simply witnessed something breathtaking, that you didn’t in that instant wish you could share that experience with someone?
I sat back down on the bed, took out my phone, and started going through my contacts. As I scrolled through my long list of contacts, I was performing a rapid mental assessment, “which of my friends could I ask on such short notice to come out here”?I had now scrolled through A, B C, D, E F G, and getting a bit desperate, then H, I, and I stopped right there! I stopped at a name that brought back a flood of memories of childhood, and adulthood fun and adventures; yes, she was the most likely friend willing and able to travel on short notice.
I called my friend up, and with the excitement in my voice (I wasn’t faking it), told her how much fun I was having, just practically next door to her (she stays in Lagos), and how it would be so awesome if she could get over here right away. Much as I had hoped, she didn’t hesitate too long, and the very next morning she got on a bus, purchased an ECOWAS Travel Certificate and arrived Lomé in just a few hours. We had a memorable time!
Sometimes, we may travel alone out of necessity; however, my advice is that you not miss any opportunity of sharing a travel experience with a companion. Granted, it’s not always easy (and most times, not financially feasible) for many of us to simply take off on an unplanned trip. But oftentimes in life, some of the most fun we’ve had has been the result of a spontaneous decision. So, here are some points to consider;
I’ll love to hear your travel experiences, so leave a comment below. Till I come your way next Tuesday with more exciting stories and adventures, have a great week!