Fear of flying
Until 2002 I had a real fear of flying and had never been in a plane. This meant I had spent nearly all of my life in Britain and most of it in Ely, in Cardiff in Wales where I was born, apart from travelling to Ostend in Belgium by ferry in 1971.
It was all to change though when I went to Tenerife for the first time on a holiday to meet my friend Priscilla Hernandez.
Moving to Tenerife was a life-changing experience
Discovering Tenerife in the Canary Islands and moving there changed my life in a big way. I conquered my fear of flying.
Fear of flying
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How I conquered my fear of flying
Aerophobia, aviatophobia, or aviophobia
Priscilla is a singer-songwriter, musician and also a fantasy artist specialising in fairy pictures, and I had become friendly with her having met online on the old mp3.com website for independent musicians.
I had seen photos of Tenerife where Priscilla lived and also learnt a very small amount of Spanish from her and I really wanted to visit so readily accepted her invitation to do so.
When I say "readily" I mean that I really wanted to but I nevertheless knew I was terrified of flying. I knew that somehow I would have to get over this fear. The phobia of being afraid of flying is also known as aerophobia,aviatophobia, or aviophobia, but whatever you want to call the problem I had it!
Priscilla told me I would love seeing the "sea of clouds" and that I would be fine. She has a song called appropriately Flying and it has the lyric: "Dare to fly..." and so I thought, why not? I would dare to fly!
Actually Priscilla was right because as soon as I was actually onboard the plane I was fine and enjoyed the experience. Then when I got off at the airport in Tenerife South I felt straight away as if I had at last found the place I was supposed to live. It really felt that way.
I had to get a bus up to the north to meet my friend, and even though I ended up going past the stop I should have got off at and so had to get off and get another bus back, and even though it was pouring with rain in the north, and even though I found out that my knowledge of Spanish was of not much help at all, I still felt that the island was saying to me that this is where I should come and live.
La Laguna in Tenerife
Tenerife's university city
I was staying in a pensión in La Laguna and even though I had no TV, no PC, no phone, no CD player, no video but just a room with a bed and a cupboard and table, chair and sink and access to a shower, I was happy with that. It was my base in this new country and where my adventures would begin from.
The week went by so fast and I fell totally in love with the island. I found lizards and bees everywhere and amazing Dragon Trees and all sorts of other exotic plant life and I spotted some Monarch butterflies, an insect I had only seen before in books and online.
I came back to Tenerife for a second holiday in the spring of 2004 and it confirmed all the feelings I had had the first time I visited the island. In the December of the same year I made the big move and have not regretted it in any way at all. So, for me visiting Tenerife led to a life-changing experience in getting rid of a phobia and it inspired me to abandon the country of my birth and start again on a Spanish island.
Copyright © 2012 Steve Andrews. All Rights Reserved.
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