|Chapman’s Peak, near one of my possible next homes.
The flights are booked.
Philadelphia —> NYC —> Amsterdam —> Helsinki. Short pause. Helsinki —> London —> Cape Town.
Don’t ask. Flights, once booked, are very difficult to reroute.
Why Cape Town?
Why else? Well then, summer, right time zone for work schedule, visa on arrival, not Europe (I’m at the end of my 90-day limit for Schengen Zone), ocean, low cost of living, mountains, city…
But actually, none of that really, truly answers your question: Why Cape Town?
Yes, those are all reasons why it’s a good choice, yet my choice did not stem from them. Rather, Cape Town felt right, and the rational reasons followed.
Too “woo woo” for you? Consider this: Whenever we have a decision to make, there is a part of us (call it intuition, gut instinct, whatever you will) that knows the “right” answer before we do. We can arrive at it by logic, or we can skip the winding road and hop straight to our destination—what feels right is right.
You argue, but this is how drug addicts, hedonists and psychiatric patients are made—acting on impulse. I counter, impulse is not the same as intuition. I sat with my decision to head to Cape Town for nearly two weeks before buying tickets. I reconsidered all my other options, gave logic its chance to sort through the possibilities. But my intuition didn’t waver:
Warm air, ocean tides—a chance to learn to surf, finally!—and hiking trails, even horses, and then all the things a city can offer: a blank slab of the unknown where you can inscribe the next months of this adventure word by novel word.
It should come as no surprise that the unknown and my intuition are particularly enmeshed. What feels “right,” more often than not, is what appears shrouded in mystery—the yet-to-be-revealed of a new culture, new community, new dance, new sport, new path, new chance.
Of course, that is my “what feels right,” and I neither suggest nor expect it should be the same for another.
It is only interesting, and instructive, to note where our intuition points us, time after time.
When we hold a question in our mind’s hands, turning it this way and that, asking where, who, what, when and, most of all, why—what is the first voice to answer, and what does it say?
Hello, intuition, nice to meet you!
Cape Town, you say? I trust you.