Merriam-Webster’s definition of the term extreme is ‘exceeding the ordinary, usual, or expected’. Thus, in travelling it implies the existence of something extraordinary, bizarre or peculiar which could refer to most what travelling is all about – adventure, food or experience.
Today, I would like to talk about extreme adventures which have become an important itinerary of most travellers especially the young. Extreme adventures include ‘heart pumping’ activities like bungee jumping, water rafting or paragliding. Most of these activities are what most adrenaline-seeker-buffs would love to do. This is mainly because of the rush of excitement and the penultimate experience of accomplishing and completing a set of critical, mostly dangerous, task or activity. But when does extreme adventure crosses the line of danger and could possibly put a person’s life in the brink of death, or at the least, be quadriplegic? How extreme can an ‘extreme adventure’ can be? These two questions are highly relevant to any traveller who wanted to partake on extreme adventures, either here or overseas.
My advice is to reflect and understand the activity involved in the extreme adventure. Most of the time, because of peer pressure and curiosity, one gets to be hurt, or worst killed, if safety is taken for granted. I used to work as a resort physician in one of the best islands in the Philippines, and I have witnessed young travellers get hurt on extreme activities. Most of them felt that they are not vulnerable to any activity, but the case is most often, if not always, the other way around. Think about your safety! Think about your life when things go wrong! Do not be brave enough when you cannot do it! Do not pressure friends or relatives if they would not want to participate on the activity. It only means that they value their life more than just being a coward. Remember always that in any activity there is a responsibility that is part of it, not only for yourself but with your co-travellers as well. You would not want to go home devastated for the death of a friend/loved one, or cut short your trip due to medical emergencies.
However, for people who really enjoy the ‘adrenaline rush’ that comes with extreme adventures, always bear in mind – Do not take any alcoholic drinks or illicit substances – when you are intending to do such activities. Warn your friends and loved ones about the dangers that come with these activities when they are intoxicated or ‘high’ on prohibited drugs. Similar to driving under the influence of illicit drugs or alcohol, you are placing your precious life closer to death, or at the least, harm.
Try other less traumatic activities that you could share with them. Besides, what matters most in a journey is not the place, or activity itself, but the experience of joy and pleasure being with your friends or loved ones. So next time you wished to go on an extreme adventure think about how you will make that experience worth-remembering, and safe at the same time.