I was involved in a conversation the other night over dinner that got me thinking. It was actually a similar conversation that I have heard numerous times over the years.
We were having dinner with a couple when the conversation of vacations came up. It just so happened they both had some time coming up and what should they do about it. Said couple is still young, in their late 50’s early 60’s and have lots of energy. The wife suggested biking in Sicily or a beach vacation in Greece, among others.
The husband kept brushing off the ideas. He would say things like. “Or we could do day trips, long weekend, stay here and work on the house.” Finally after some back and forth banter that went from mild jesting to a tense disagreement the husband said, and I quote, “I don’t want to go to any fucking foreign city right now. We are targets.” Queue awkward silence.
The subject changed a bit, we moved on to safer subjects, religion and politics you know…but it got me thinking.
As much as I respect the man who said that, I think he is wrong. Not that we aren’t targets, we are. Half the world wants to kill us.
What is wrong about is not wanting to go. Terrorist want to instill terror. With the mentality of not wanting to travel because there might be an attack, they’ve succeeded. It may not be their end game, but they have certainly won a round if people stop traveling because of their actions. I say, if you have the means, travel! Go to Paris, Rome, Greece, Dublin, just go.
Don’t let a “what if” stop you. The same thing happened after the 9/11 attacks. No one wanted to travel, no one wanted to get on a plane, and hell who could blame them. But we did…we have to.
It is the same thing on a smaller scale. All the school shootings, all the theater and mall shootings.
Who wants to go to the movies anymore? No one! But the only thing that should scare you from going is the insane prices! We can’t keep our kids home, locked away in a safe. Believe me, every time I see a school shooting the thought crosses my mind, but the next day, I send my kid to a public school much like Sandy Hook and pray for an uneventful day. We can’t live our lives in fear. You aren’t really living at that point. What are you living for if not to experience life? When will it ever be safe? The answer is, probably never. If you want to wait for the world to be safe, unfortunately you will be waiting until your dying days. I can’t say for sure, but I am willing to bet that on your death day you are not going to be saying, “Gee I am glad I sat home safe and sound my whole life.”
We can’t let these people control our lives. If you are someone who has always wanted to travel, than you should do it. You should find a way and do it. If you want nothing more than to curl up on your couch and read a book, that is great too. Don’t let them stop you from going out to the library to get your books. Don’t let them stop you from going to school, work, concerts, malls, theaters, parks. Can something awful happen? Yes. Something awful can also happen on your way to work.
Don’t let these people stop you from experiencing something amazing. These people are the cowards, don’t let them turn you into one.