Explorer Mikael Strandberg

Don´t listen to those negative bastards!

Every one told us before the Kolyma expedition, that we would get killed by gold diggers, gun runners or similar dangers. Instead we found the best people on earth!

 I just talked to the Yemeni Angel. She says the visa is ready, but her contact couldn´t pick it up until Saturday. It is a weekend now and most likely a big qat chew waiting for the beaurocrats, so this is no big news. However, I won´t relax until the second she has that piece of paper! But I am confident and have so much trust in her and the Yemenis who is helping her. This is the way it is in Yemen. Nothing can really be done in advance. One day at a time. It is just a case of me not having any patience at all. I never have. And this is my great weakness. Waiting for others to do their job.

The Angel is my new Expedition partner. She is an extremely good human being. But all the worries, all the freight and negative comments from people surrounding her in Sanaa is getting to her. Wearing her down, like it did with Tarim. They loose confidence, get scared and pull out.

I try to tell them, don´t listen to these negative bastards! They don´t have a clue what this life is about! I have heared it since the day I took the desicion to do my first journey, on a bicycle from Chile to Alaska. Everybody said I was a lunitic, that it was impossible and that I would be robbed and dead quite soon. And I have heard it ever since. Am still here after 25 years of hard Expeditions.

Reality is like this; There´s a reason so few of us human beings do Expeditions. the difference is we don´t listen to the negative aspects, we calculate them, find a solution and set off and deal with it when it turns up. Most of us are very well read, research has been long and thorough and, most of all, we see the good in all people. And an attitude like that makes a difference! And I am privilaged to live with a person with that attitude, my wife! It may be a defect somehow, but I think this is the base of being an explorer.


People told me it was impossible to cross the Sahara with a bicycle…really….

On top of that, the negative people, they´re negative for three reasons.

First, they have no clue about the life as an explorer, the vision you need to have and the trust in other people. Your attitude is a danger to them and their lives.

Second, most base their negative on pure ignorance. How many of them have really been outside of, for example, in this case, Sanaa and the big cities?

Third, it is pure jelousy. They just don´t have the right stuff!

So, I choose to socialize only with the positive, it is a choice everybody can take, and I just turn my hearing off when the negative hits the fan of conversation. But I listen and than, before leaving, I make an assessment of it, put it through a positive filter and add it to the back off my head as an experience.

Yemeni Angel, don´t listen to them until I come with my positive filters!

One comment

  1. My work in Papua has consistently attracted negative and uninformed comments from ‘wont you get eaten’ or the worst ‘have your head shrunk’ – being aware of dangers in the countries we choose to explore makes for a much safe expedition – however its consistently the people who I meet on my expeditions which makes the journey what it is and indeed what we make it, as it is people like you and I who see beyond the negative and accept the positive in all – yet with an awareness and reality that human nature does from time to time create individuals who may cause you harm….

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.