June 2018 | By Griffin Ferre
As we hurtled down the Nile River, the water cascaded into the front of out boat and slammed into our faces, drenching us from head to toe and then providing only a momentary respite before sending us right back into the current, continuing our journey through the rapids.
I wouldn’t have it any other way.
For me, the fact that we were battling the sun and the waves and the chance that we would tumble into the water while doing it together as a group made for an awesome experience and the whole excursion has perhaps been my highlight of the trip so far. In fact, throughout the first two weeks I’ve noticed that a lot of good experiences have come unexpectedly after moments when I’ve doubted things would turn out the way we planned. Its’s made me think about how it’s tempting to view moments of adversity as obstacles, but I have been trying to reconceive those moments as opportunities to grow and learn instead.
A week earlier, a group of us had gone a garden and fountain tour sponsored by the Mosa Court Apartments where we are staying. The highlight of that trip was undoubtedly when, right when we thought we had run out of things to do and were looking for ways to entertain ourselves, we found ourselves surrounded by a group of about 20-30 hungry baboons who were snacking on the bananas that one of the staff was tossing in their direction. This experience had not been part of the official tour, but the unexpected spectacle was quite a treat.
At the Department of Public Prosecutions where I have been working, I was a bit dismayed at first by the fact that the DPP did not have stacks of work ready for us to dive into when we arrived. But now I am enjoying the challenge of having to ask for work and gradually receiving more and more substantive assignments over time.
This whole trip has given me the opportunity to ponder how important it is to be of appreciative of all the good things we have in our lives rather than bemoaning the things that don’t go the way we hoped. One of the biggest things I’ve taken from this trip is that weathering the small daily obstacles we have in life can be a very rewarding experience, and also that the pineapple here is delicious.