Wednesday, 22 January 2014


Over the past little while I've been putting together a film of my friends cycle around the world, called The Bicycle Diaries.

She wrote a great blog during the long adventure, and as research for the film I enjoyed reading over it once more.  Right at the end she writes:

"There is an art to life and happiness, you can't just expect it to happen".

I like to think of myself as a person who seeks out and embraces adventure. I'm also a bit of a dreamer, sometimes unrealistically. So it seemed appropriate recently to go and see the movie The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.  Don't panic, this is not going to be a film review!  Suffice to say that the film centres around an employee of Life magazine, back when it was producing its last ever hard copy. The story takes the main character out of his comfort zone and thrusts him into challenges, some life threatening.

Every time I have embarked on a new adventure, from just a few days in the Scottish Highlands, trekking in the high Himalayas for three months or cycling across a continent for half a year, I never knew what to expect. I would plan and prepare as much as I could, but there would always be the unexpected.

I recall many times when, without warning, the challenges presented themselves, I wouldn't deal with it very well, seeing them as an intrusion, or a departure from what I considered normal. On hindsight though none of the adventures I've had in life would have been quite as memorable without those challenges. They are in essence what made the journey.

And it's those challenges that make life what it is.

Pauline is right. You can't expect it just to happen. You have to put effort into making your dreams a reality, and expect the unexpected.

Life magazine had a great motto:

To see things thousands of miles away,
things hidden behind walls and within rooms,
things dangerous to come to,
to draw closer,
to see and be amazed.

After I saw the movie I did a little research on the magazine. The first result took me to Wikipedia. At the top of the page it stated: "Life redirects here".

The next time I find myself faced with a challenge on a new adventure, or even just day to day, and it starts to feel a bit stressful, I'll tell myself, "life redirects here".


Anonymous said...

A very profound thought Graham. Pauline

Graham Kitchener said...

Thought it was kind of neat when that phrase appeared on Wikipedia. It's not unusual but it inspired the blog.