The tourists and guide deaths on White Island, Whakaari / New Zealand is very tragic and sad.
I can’t help but remember my safe but still risky visits to volcanos in Nicaragua and zip lining in Costa Rica or even travelling to Antartica and walking across a moving iceberg.
To travel is to experience some type of risk even if it’s limited to flights (like the recent 737 Max crashes) but even when not travelling or on a holiday we still live with risk (most car accidents obviously occur near your home and I recall several incidents in Melbourne CBD by crazy people that easily could have taken my life).
Incidents like what occurred in NZ are not reasons to avoid travel or experiences but they are a reminder that you need to evaluate risk and reward and not just accept it will be all right especially when in countries with less regulation or safety focus.
For example when on Africa safari a few years back I dropped out of white water rafting in one dangerous section. I had done this type of rafting before but it just didn’t feel safe enough to me in one particular area so I took the ‘safe option’ and rejoined after this particular section. While nothing happened I just wasn’t feeling safe and that’s not a good place to be when getting into a rough section.
I know I deliberately selected more risky countries and activities while I was younger thinking as I get older I’ll more to safer and easier options but I’ll still travel to remote countries but probably be a little more careful on activities. Still lots of Western Europe to see 🙂
To those you have lost someone in NZ or when travelling overseas I’m so sorry for your loss, it much feel worse with them being so far away. Maybe in years to come it might be a small solace that at least they were doing something they enjoyed (travelling and exploring the world) instead of in a car accident on the way to work. Hopefully the days and hours before these tragedies were enjoyable. It might be only a small solace but they were living their lives meeting new friends and having new experiences.
For my friends if this ever happens to me when travelling please remember it was doing something that was central to my life (new experiences, new cultures etc) and this has given me great joy and made my life much richer.
RIP my fellow world travellers
And to those who are suffering from this terrible loss I hope you find comfort and even joy again one day.