‘The brave don’t live forever but the cautious don’t live at all’ – Bill See
Last year 27th Feb I left my job to go travelling and it seems by God-incidence that I left the same job on the same day to go on my first 2020 adventure trip abroad.
But let me start at the beginning; I almost wasn’t going to go on this trip and that’s due to my sandboarding misadventure that left me in a lot of pain, a partially dislocated shoulder and needing a root canal on my return home.
The great sand dunes of Huacachina are found on basically every backpacker’s trails of Peru and I was not going to be any different. I saw the activity and it was right up my street! My hostel was offering it free with my stay and it looked awesome and it truly was fun.
My group took a bumpy ride over the dunes and we were to tackle three dunes. I survived the first two dunes, they were fun, exhilirating even and despite my little tumble at the end of the second dune I approached the third (follow on Instagram to see the story in action).
The third dune was not like the first two….it was steep, huge and long and in the pit of my stomach my gut told me ‘don’t do this Tayo, there is no shame in not doing this one.’
I stood at the top, completely petrified and alone. I felt I had no choice, the guide had left me so I was like how was I going to get down now and the two guys in front had done it with zero problems and were egging me on ‘that I would be fine.’
Except I wasn’t.
Even as I type this I’m trying to suppress the sheer panic that arises within me when I recount the accident.
The board underneath my body left me (its not supposed to) and I somersaulted at killer speed hitting my head on the board, gaining more and more momentum down this vast dune, with my legs flipping over my head again and again like an avalanche ball hurtling towards a city it wants to destroy.
The torture finally ended as I landed on my back with blood dripping from my mouth.
I had survived and the first thing I wail as lots of people rush towards me to check I’m ok is,
‘Do I still have my front teeth?’
I had deadened a nerve (hence the root canal) and as blood was dripping into my hand I was horrified, thinking I had lost the gappy teeth that gives me my killer smile.
I was reassured a plenty that I did indeed have my teeth as they were more concerned with me having a serious head injury, as I got myself up on my feet with little help.
The thoughts racing through my mind during the ordeal?
This is it, this is how I’m going to meet my Lord and my Mum, like all Nigerian mums will say, what business did I have sandboarding?
And of course I can’t blame her. This incident left me shook!
What business do I now have going on my first ever ski trip?
None but also everything. How can I let this one misadventure stop me from trying new things?
Don’t get me wrong, I am still a lil’ scared, apprehensive and anything new and unknown always is, but I wanna try skiing before this body of mine ages. At the end of 2019 I lost someone dear to me and I look at her life and I say ‘she lived life beautifully and to her desired fullness.’
Armed with all these experiences I’m doing it anyway with all my apprehension but I will listen to my gut in its entirety, if something doesn’t feel right then I will assess and not do it.
So as my plane pulls out onto the runway, I’m off skiing in Bankso, Bulgaria with a mixed group of novices and some with a little experience organised by The Wind Collective and Mount Noire. Having such an activity organised and to include lessons allows for me to relax a little and not worry about logisitcs.
I’m here to get back on this adventure horse, swishing (or falling) down the slopes!
Admiring the sunset over the dunes
Love The Five to Nine Traveller
Shout out though to my Dad & bestie Chi (both doctors) who advised me medically through whatsapp videos and calls. To my Dad who when I said ‘don’t tell Mum’, downplayed the whole incident to her so that her stress about me would not be heightened – thanks Paps.