Travel Stories

Cancelling Sam's Trip

  I talk to Sam filled with ambivalence, fearful I will disappoint him, but equally if not more fearful he will have a lousy time here, as I am having a lousy time here, and for me the trip feels over.  I think of the Kenny Rogers’ song, about knowing when to hold ‘em and when to fold ‘em and about how hard it is to fold - because once you’ve folded you’ve surrendered, accepted defeat, ended your engagement in the hand, come to accept that although possible, the odds of improving your position are just too slim for you to remain in the game, and you surrender hope to practicalities and probabilities.  No good player throws good money after bad, and those players who win most often fold early most often, not seduced by the remote statistical possibility of improving a particular hand they've already become attached to, knowing that while every hand can be a winner, every hand is more likely the loser, and, in this regard, hard as it is to fold Sam’s trip to Africa cards, I’m convinced it is the right decision for Sam that forgo the trip, notwithstanding how much saying so fills me with regret. 
         It takes me an entire afternoon on the Internet to change plans and planes, to cancel and reschedule flights, but there’s also nothing else compelling me, it’s not very costly monetarily, and when it is all done I feel I’ve made the right choice, although I also still feel quite shitty and guilty at the possibility i've disappointed Sam, although, as I write him, “trust me, if you didn't like dharamsalah ... you wont like dakar.”  All small potatoes in the big picture i trust ... but I am anxious and feeling guilty about it all until Sam has the grace to say in an email, “Don't sweat it my man!  Honestly, I feel in my heart it was not the right place or time for me to take this trip. I'm much happier getting back to my workout/work/basketball routine after being so sick (and finally feeling better) than hopping on a plane and make a long journey to a foreign land.  Happy you are headed home and looking forward to seeing you.”