Like the stars, there's something about coming face to face with the sea (or in this case a churning lake) that can make you feel incredibly powerless, yet incredibly full of energy all at the same time. Just like the moon's effect on the tides, the rise and fall of the water has a mystical, magnetic ability to hypnotize you, leaving most people with a sensation of either dread or wonder. Danny Castellano once said, "I fear the ocean, out of respect". Upon hearing this, my lighthearted chuckle quickly turned into uneasy laughter, as I suddenly realized how true his words were. It just so happens that of the top three things I fear the most, the fear of the deep sea, is one I've developed after years of watching nature documentaries and reading tales of people getting lost in the open ocean. Over the years, this unease spread to other forces of nature, which include large bodies of water, namely waterfalls. Which brings me to the irony of my trip down south, where I visited a waterfall that draws tourists from near and far, Niagara Falls.







While Niagara Falls isn't remarkably high or majestic-looking, it does have that certain "je ne sais quoi" that often separates the ordinary from the extraordinary. So, I did what any other good tourist would do, I grabbed my camera, swallowed my fear, donned one of the complementary red rain ponchos, and climbed aboard the vessel that was supposed to take me and a whole bunch of strangers deep into the belly of the beast. I positioned myself at the bow of the ship, right next to the bullhorn, and instead of experiencing fear, what I felt instead was a growing sense of connectedness. I suddenly felt connected to all of the adventurers and explorers that I had grown up watching on television, or had spent countless hours reading about. They had stood where I stood, and felt what I felt, not a sense of dread (as I had mistakenly believed) but a mix of anticipation and wonder. That special brew that fueled the explorations of many a braver globetrotter before me and that continues to inspire the new generation, calling their once dormant spirits into action. As we plunged into the mist, I was both elated and relieved, to have gone where I'm sure the adventurers of yore thought to be impossible, and to have managed to dance between two worlds -- or more specifically two borders -- where I've confronted my past and taken control of my future, all at the same time.






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