Two years ago, my oldest daughter graduated from high school. As her mother is from Australia, my daughter took a year off between high school and college, and spent the year traveling and working in Australia. She really grew from the experience in a number of ways, and it gave me a great excuse to travel to Australia to see her.
At the end of this year, another daughter of mine will graduate from high school. Like her older sister, this one has the travel and adventure gene in her, as well, and wants to set off for her own journey, with Dubai as one of her destinations. As the protective father, I had to do my research on the most populous city in the United Emirates. To be sure, I have a very good friend who has been there several times, and he has raved about it over and over. According to him, Dubai has so much to offer, so many opportunities located in one large city; many such opportunities that most large cities simply do not.
So the Daddy in me did my due diligence and began my research. As one who used to snorkel in Australia, I was excited to see that Dubai offers beautiful waters and awe inspiring snorkeling off their coast. Indeed, there is the opportunity to really get a fantastic view of the coral reefs, along with a number of wrecks on the ocean’s floor for my daughter to explore. Yet, what she wants to do most, it seems, is sky dive. Now, I am not that brave. I have experienced just about everything, but that is not one thing I have on my bucket list. It is on hers. She wants to jump out of a plane and sky dive. As one who has lived the motto of Carpe Diem in all I do, I admire her desire to do this, and encourage her. I just won’t join her, myself!
Despite the fact that we know people who live in Dubai, and who can help look after her if she should visit, I needed to check to see if Dubai was a safe for my daughter. The protective father in me was relieved to see that it is.
When my oldest daughter left our small town of 4,000 people, nestled in the middle of rural Georgia, I had many a person ask me how I felt about my daughter traveling the world and being away from my family for an extended period of time. My response was that I was excited that she had the opportunity to see the world, immerse herself in new cultures and customs, and learn from a global perspective. I was excited for the chance for my daughter to grow from all of these experiences. Since her travels, she has come back, and has a greater appreciation not only of the world, but for what she has in life. For my next daughter, I am just as excited. Whether she travels to Dubai, or another part of the world, I am eager for her to discover the world, and discover herself.