Until now, I haven’t given myself the time to sit back and contemplate the Argentinean adventure I’m about to embark on. As I put the first item, a stick of lip balm, into my day pack, I am hit by the queer feelings of excitement and fear. Argentina will be the farthest I have ever been from my home, Texas. In fact, I haven’t stepped a foot outside of the U.S. border. The funny thing is that I am not as much afraid of the unknown as one might expect, I am most concerned about how I will interact with the group I am traveling with. Hopefully I will be able to live up to their expectations and be a positive influence, such as Bilbo Baggins is in The Hobit. However, I am not a mythical creature destined to save the day. My only other fear is that, in my absentmindedness, I will forget the one thing that I may rely on the most such as my passport, money, watch, or underwear.
I do have basic expectations for the trip, though some may be unrealistic. In my mind thus far, I have thought about the trip as a learning vacation. Yes, a vacation. Do not misunderstand me, I will take the trip as seriously as everyone else concerning our business for being in Argentina, but I can’t eradicate my deep rooted desire to have fun. Hopefully, I will have multiple opportunities to meet new people, take pictures, eat new foods, and explore the sights. Relating more to business, I expect to increase my knowledge concerning cultural diversity. What makes these expectations unrealistic isn’t that they won’t be accomplished, but that in my mind I have exaggerated how often and wonderful my experience will be. I am a little worried that my exaggerated expectations will affect my emotions while in Argentina, either making the experience bright or blue.
As Galadriel said in The Lord of the Rings, “The Quest stands upon the edge of a knife. Stray but a little, and it will fail, to the ruin of all. Yet hope remains while the Company is true.”