onvural.net – melih – family man

Week 42, 2022 – Back together again


Micky and I got back from the Okavango Delta in Botswana on Thursday, and found the time away both incredibly revitalizing, and also an incredible mechanism by which to refocus. Finding this kind of space and time has been so hard – especially with Micky’s new job, constantly moving between houses, and Amelia starting her middle school routine, and the insanity that was a major launch at Stripe.

We got to go on a safari every day starting at 6am, and would spend 4 – 5 hours driving through the wilderness trying to find interesting animal moments. There are impala everywhere. They’re known as the McDonald’s of the savannah because they are fast food. You’ll see zebra and you’ll often see elephant as well. Finding the predators is hard, and seeing the animals do something besides grazing is hard as well. And in that time you’re left with your thoughts quite a bit. It was fantastic, but I could also imagine that it would be overwhelming for those who hate being with their thoughts.

The time in between was spent eating, swimming, napping, and occasionally figuring out the solution to the world’s problems – or at least how we hoped to survive the next 6 months or so.

The afternoon safari would always be shorter, a bit harder to find things, but would afford a sunset that was – on a daily basis – awe inspiring. There is so much dust in the sky that you can look almost directly at the sun – a large, red circle that lights the horizon in shades of pink. Having an afternoon tea while a gorgeous sunset falls behind a watering hole is incredible. One night, as we’re turning a corner on our way back in the dark, a herd of elephants was hanging out and digging for roots. We just slowly drove through as they focused on the meal in front of them.

The nights were filled with planning. Planning the next set of trips. Figuring out Luka’s middle schools to apply to. Planning for the house – which had great progress made on it while we were gone. Planning for how to retire sooner and just keep traveling as a full-time job.

When you have hippos barking in the background with the bell frogs and the baboons it really puts into perspective how much of our time is spent doing the default as opposed to doing things purposefully.

Our trip home was a short flight, a short flight, a 16-hour flight across the globe, and then a short flight. Being home with the babies who spent time with Doruk, Hanna, and my mom was incredible. They seemed to have an incredible time. It made taking the time off much easier knowing that

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