The breathtaking beauty of the snow-capped Alps, with their wide green valleys below, was totally captivating, drawing us in like bees to a honey pot.
We were on our way from Bavaria to Austria. With such magnificent scenery surrounding us it was hard to believe, that on this particular day, the hills were alive ……… not with music but with my own fear and pandemonium!
John Lennon was totally right when he said, “There are two basic motivating forces: fear and love. When we are afraid we pull back from life. When we are in love we open to all that life has to offer with passion, excitement and acceptance.
On this particular day, surrounded by all of this beauty, I was undergoing my own inner- battles.
I was so totally passionate and “in love’ with the absolutely mesmerizing landscapes that were unveiling before my eyes and yet, at the same time, so absolutely terrorized by my better half’s driving, as he was learning to travel on the right hand side of the road.
Should we open up to all that life had to offer on that day or should we indeed pull back and remove ourselves from this terrifying experience altogether? My thoughts spiralled around inside my head. “Should we stop? Isn’t this all too much? Maybe we should give it a miss! Maybe we could just return to Munich and catch up on some of the wonderful sightseeing back there that we’ve missed due to our previous few days of illness.”
But somehow the beauty of these remarkable Alps just kept drawing us in. My love for this amazingly stunning scenery was actually the main thing that kept me going despite my massive fears. At the back of my mind I just kept trying to tell myself.…”It’s only just like riding a bike. You know, you’ll get used to travelling on the wrong side of the road. Give it a chance. Just don’t think about it. For goodness sakes, close your eyes!”
Despite my rampaging inner dialogue, and despite my beloved’s growing chagrin, I was still extremely prone to breaking down and exhibiting full-blown tantrum-like behaviours with utterances such as: “Ahhhhhh! For goodness sake move over towards the middle of the road will you! We nearly hit that signpost just back there! What are you trying to do anyway –kill us or something?”
I’m sure that all of these uncontrolled outbursts must have taken a toll. Certainly, it took away, from what could, and should have been, a totally enjoyable new experience test driving our sleek new black “Beamer” (BMW) which we had just rented for the 5 day journey through Austria.
At the very least I know my own fears and undignified behaviour were taking their toll on my husband. He started to echo his own little mantra:
Keep to the Right. Look to the Left.
Keep to the right. Look to the Left.
Mercifully we did survive after all. Despite my high anxiety levels associated with driving on the “WRONG SIDE OF THE ROAD” Austria and the Alps are still among my absolute favourite places in the world. In spite of the irrational fears, it was the amazingly beautiful scenery that had encouraged me to “open up to all that life had to offer with passion, excitement and acceptance.”