A trip to see the Northern Lights requires a lot time, patience, and endurance. It took three flights (Manila – London – Reykjavik), a 1200-mile drive, and a five-day search, with us running on only 4-5 hours of sleep each leg. We also had to dress in four layers of clothing to brave the nearly zero-degree weather just to see the best nature show imaginable.
My sister Verniece and I had dreamed of seeing it in person for so long, but it was a far-fetched dream that seemed impossible. We didn’t have the proper driving skills to go around Iceland on our own, let alone trust a tour guide we didn't know to go with just the two of us. We checked our savings at the start of the year and while we reached our financial goal for 2015, we knew that it had to stay in our savings account for our future. The distance was also a factor we took into consideration.
At the beginning of 2016, more travel opportunities started to come in. We got more inspired to travel after each trip. We worked double time and tried to juggle school and work. Even with our energy drained from almost taking a total of 92 flights, delays, and getting stuck in airports because of cancellations, we still made sure to meet our work and school obligations because we knew that it was the only way to make all our travel dreams come true.
As October came to an end, we were in a meeting and the topic of Iceland came up. We finally found someone who was willing to spend time and money for a trip to the island. We all decided that we needed to go together ASAP because this was going to be the last winter we could see the Northern Lights at its best. After that meeting, we both checked our earnings for the year and saw that we had enough for the trip.
Making our Northern Lights dream come true proved that with hard work and determination, anything is possible. Make a list of goals, keep your focus, pray constantly for guidance, and have a lot of patience, because it will take years, tears, a lot of errors, embarrassing moments, and failures to get there. Once you’ve crossed that number one goal off your list, it will all be worth it. In our case, we knew we achieved our dream when we got that call at 4:30 am to go outside our hotel because the Northern Lights were finally showing and we saw green lights dancing in the black sky. It was unlike anything we have ever experienced.
Photo: Vern Enciso
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