by: Sara Bozich
April 22, 2004

Despite the fact that this was originally intended to be a trip for three girlfriends to travel somewhere none of us have been and is now practically a soul-searching mission for one … I am going to Egypt.

I’m leaving next Tuesday, April 27, 2004, and this is what I’ll be doing.
Check out the hotel in Cairo, and the cruise ship for the Nile. I will return on May 4.

I intend to write Out with Sara from Egypt, so look for that in The Patriot-News on May 7.

Click below to read about the events prior to the trip that made this a difficult decision. In the meantime, I’ll be writing in the Middle East. Stay tuned.

The rest of the story …

Many months ago, a friend found this great trip to Egypt and suggested that we go. The price was right, and we had talked about traveling before, so we talked to our other friends about going. Many people voiced concerns about the safety of the area at this time, but we dismissed it. The travel agency stays aware of warnings for the area and would cancel the trip should there be a risk of significant danger. My parents just said, “Why Egypt?”

The answer was that I always wanted to be the kind of person who travels, yet I do so little of it. I have never been out of the country (Canada does NOT count), and I’ve barely seen enough of this great land for my taste either. It seemed to me, especially considering the low cost, that this was an opportunity I could not turn down.

And so, three of us ended up signing up. One couldn’t go because her mother wouldn’t permit it; another had a conflicting vacation.

We were giddy — EGYPT!

When the time came to pay the balance of our trip (our deposits were paid when we signed up), Beth discovered that she was pregnant. After some debate with her family, she decided to turn down the trip as it was her first pregnancy, and she wasn’t sure how well she would be. Kelly and I briefly discussed if we would still go, as Beth was our common friend, and quickly decided that, yes, we were going to Egypt.

I was a little bit skeptical, to be honest, because I did not know Kelly very well, but as the date approached, we started spending more time together and I truly looked forward to sharing this experience with her.

Exactly one week before we were to depart, Beth called me and said she had to tell me something but I was going to flip out. Kelly was in a car accident. She was okay, but she wasn’t going on the trip.

My heart went out to Kelly. This was her dream, and though she is lucky enough to be relatively okay after the accident, I felt terribly that she would miss this on top of everything else.

My head turned to Egypt. What was going on? Was this a sign? I often believe that things happen for a reason (though not one that’s necessarily immediately clear), and I had to wonder: Why doesn’t Kelly get to follow her dream? Why am I going to a foreign country by myself?

Emotions ranged from sadness to anger to frustration and a few times hit momentary optimism. There was much to consider. I knew only one couple on the trip, and everyone was around my parents’ age. Money — we wouldn’t get any back. We couldn’t transfer the trip for another time.

I battled between, “I can do this. I love being alone anyway,” and “I don’t even care about Egypt, why would I want to do this by myself.”

I’m not entirely sure what the deciding factor was. My gut said yes — I guess that was it. Who knows? I’m holding out hope that they will adopt me as their Nile Princess.

Categories: Out with Sara, Travel

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