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A Fork in the road

Isnít it strange how life can suddenly approach a time for decision-making that makes you feel like your world is about to change forever? We all reach important moments when itís as though thereís a fork in the road ahead of us and we have to make a decision, as stopping will lead to stagnation. Itís one way or the other.

Isnít it strange how life can suddenly approach a time for decision-making that makes you feel like your world is about to change forever? I have reached such a moment. Although my life experience has already had huge events causing some evolution of my conscious thought as well as self-discovery, I have at least for the last 19 years, found myself surrounded by familiarity. This weekend everything is about to change.

I have been driving the same car for the last 8 years. I know itís just a material possession but itís come to be part of my identity, and my reality. Over the next three days I will be wishing my old friend a fond farewell as I leave her with a friend to sell when I leave my old city behind. I have been living in the same place (not house but city) for the last 2 decades and now itís finally time to go. Itís a strange feeling to see all of the faces of my friends and acquaintances and not know if Iíll ever see them again. Of course in reality, everyday of our lives is like this, as we never know when weíll leave this world and our human body behind. Still, just the same, itís weird to know that so much that I perceive as normality will soon fade into the past.

To my favorite local restaurants: goodbye. The dentist and mechanic that I learned to trust after dealing with others who didnít feel competent, the place where I buy my groceries: goodbye. Goodbye to all my friends at work (though I will stay in contact on-line), martial arts class, university. Iíve always lived in the same city as my mother. Well, itís time to leave the nest. At thirty years of age I actually left home over a decade ago, but now Iím leaving my home town and soon will be leaving my home country for an extended period of time.

Life is a journey. My path has connected me with a partner who lives far away and now after over a year of long-distance relationship we will have some time to live together. Iím going to go and visit my genetic father and grandmother in America soon after I move (my graduation present), then a couple of months after I return to my new home my girlfriend and I are going to live in Japan for a year where I will teach English. Iíve applied for a job that is looking like a real chance, but if I donít get it, there are a lot more on the Internet. As my girlfriend is Chinese, we will then go on to live in China for around half a year. While with my father we are to go on a vacation to Costa Rica in Central America. Sounds pretty good when I write it all down but itís been hard to organize. Iím also feeling affected by impending losses already.

 I guess once I get on the plane to leave the feeling of a fresh new beginning will take over. Last weekend as I sat on top of a local mountain making the final decision to sign the marriage papers so that my girlfriend will be able to come with me to Japan and then eventually back to Australia, I saw an eagle riding high on the currents of the sky. It looked beautiful and powerful as the

bird seemingly (I know it must have taken a massive a mount of effort and practice) made effortless circles coasting through the low-lying clouds. What freedom this animal must feel! It didnít look as though it was searching for prey or going anywhere in particular; it was more of a Ďjoy flightí. It made me wonder if my own decision was also the first step towards spreading my own wings towards a life of freedom. My opposing negative side (itís always there) questioned if my decision would be the cause of death for any future chances of freedom.

In life we all reach important moments when itís as though thereís a fork in the road ahead of us. We have to make a decision, as stopping will lead to stagnation. Itís one way or the other. We try and weigh up the situation and listen to our hearts but sometimes we just donít know what is right for us. I think at these times we just have to make that leap of faith off the edge of the proverbial cliff and have the courage to fail, if thatís to be our destiny. If we do succeed thatís great, but itís often the failures that we do learn the most from. You mightnít even want to consider them as failures. Maybe theyíre just learning experiences. We all have to learn certain things while we are here and itís probably true that no matter which road you take, youíre personal destiny will lead you to the same challenges, obstacles, and learning situations.

I once saw a movie called ĎHimalayaí ( where an old Nepalese tribal chief had to choose between two paths that led his group of yaks and people to the other side of the mountains when on their annual salt trading expedition. He chose the path that looked hardest. The feeling I got from his choice was that if you do take the harder path in life, and succeed, the victory will be much more poignant and worthwhile for the traveler. If you fail, you know you didnít take the easy way out. If you took the easier path and survived, you might always wonder what might have happened if youíd been brave enough to go the other way. However, some will always argue that being safe is the best way to be. Limiting risks and the chance for failure will insure you against falling through the gaps and becoming a blood-stained corpse on the rocks below. For those who follow this creed hear my gentle words, ĎBe careful you donít end up being so safe that you sacrifice the love in your heart. The only reason the eagle can flyScience Articles, is because it took that first dangerous leap of faith.í

By Jesse S. Somer
Jesse S. Somer is just one of billions of creatures who walk the multi-branched road of life on Earth. He is stepping forward to see what may lie just out of sight, on what looks like the harder path.
Jesse S. Somer is a creative writer working at M6.Net: ĎThe web-hosting company for humans.í M6.Net is working hard to help humanity experience the power and freedom to develop their own part of the Internet, to share their information and connect with anyone, anywhere, anytime.

Written by: Daniel Punch

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