Some tribes believe that in December 2012, the world will end. Due to a cluster of stains on the sun, they say, catastrophe takes place in the world every 12 years or so. For example, 12 years before 2012 was 9/11, 11 years before that was the Gulf War and so on…. In 2012, some say, it will be the end of us all. Others are less pessimistic and say that it can simply be the grand chaos of a new beginning.
I asked myself where I would travel if there was only one more year to do so. My answer was either to the north pole to see polar bears on glaciers in north Canada – or to the south pole, to Antarctica. I spent the last week of October of this year in Ushuaia, the most southern city on this planet (besides the Chilean town Puerto Williams, of course). Among other things, I looked at the ships that would be sailing to Antarctica within a month or two and wished I could join them. I promised myself that one day I will.
Meanwhile, I enjoyed the city and its nature. Someone smart once branded Ushuaia as the End of the World. You can get an End of the World stamp in your passport in the national park there – before or after you ride the End of the World train. You can also get various other, similar stamps in your passport, such as The Southern Most City in the World. At a certain point, another government decided to leave a mark as well, and re-branded Ushuaia as The End of the World – the Beginning of Everything!
I wrote here before how it reminded me of a map I saw in my campus, that showcased what could have happened if Columbus came from Africa: perhaps the world map would have been drawn “upside down” and Ushuaia would have been the northern most city in the world. Today, a step before kissing off one of the most magical years of my life and embracing 2012, I am grateful for the fortune I have had and have to explore endless opportunities. Today, at the brink of a new year, I would like to invite you to travel back me with through those magical days in Ushuaia, as a symbol to the belief that it’s possible to touch the impossible.
If you could reach any corner in the world, where would you travel?