How I almost went to South Africa for National Geographic, but didn't


Two weeks ago I got a phone call from National Geographic telling me I was one in five contestants to reach the finals of their Adventurers Wanted competition for South Africa. They were looking for someone from the Netherlands to join a team of seven adventurers from seven different countries. I was actually so busy with my own expedition through Europe that I had forgotten that I sent in an application… The final step was an interview with National Geographic and the South African Tourist Organisation. They picked someone else unfortunately, but maybe for the better, as the trip was to be two weeks before my departure. I congratulate her and wish her a good time in South Africa. The following text was the application with which I made it to the finals.

I am about to go on the biggest adventure of my life as I’m going to quit my job, leave my house and walk to Santiago, Rome and Jerusalem in one hike, without a penny. And I will make it.

But before all this I’m all in for South Africa! The Tour de France starts its prologue in a different country each year so why can’t I? This is not to say that this 7-day expedition you’re recruiting for isn’t an adventure in its own right. The above is only meant as an indication of my adventurousness. Meet inspiring people, see interesting places and have new experiences, to me this is bliss.

Africa has always intrigued me: the wild life, the unpolished beauty of it’s nature. The one thing I can say nothing about is the people, but that is only because I like to stay open, and assumptions about individuals you have never met cloud the mind.

So who will you have on board should you choose to pick me? I am Dutch, single and studied political philosophy. I work at the National Theatre Company in The Hague as a producer and I sing in a blues band. I like to ski, run, sail and cook. I write songs, poems and articles. Above all I’m an easy going person with a positive attitude and a dry sense of humor. Do we have a date?

Wijnand Boon