Yesterday evening I had the pleasure of meeting a man who has completed some extraordinary feats in his life, in actual fact he has finished two epic journeys that no person in the history of mankind had ever been able to complete before him.
Leaving Cape Town in July 2003 and returning 2 years 2 months later, Riaan Manser became the first person to circumnavigate the African continent by bicycle unaided – 37,000 km through 34 countries. He travelled north along the western coast of Africa, and hugged the coastline as closely as possible. The journey was not easy by any means as he was held captive by Rebels on two seperate occasions in Liberia and the Ivory coast and had to overcome a range of different problems that one would expect with a mammoth journey like this.
Incredibly that journey was not enough to quench his hunger for adventure and 3 years later he became the first person to kayak around Madagascar, alone and unaided. Madagascar is the world’s fourth largest island with a coastal perimeter of 5000 kilometres. The journey took around ten months and much of it on grade five to seven sea levels [severe to impossible] making the completion that much greater.
What made meeting this extremely humble man so special was being able to experience his burning desire to inspire others to make their own dreams come true. His achievements already rank against some of the greatest feats of endurance seen by man, like reaching the South Pole, climbing Mount Everest and sailing alone around the world.
When I asked him what gave him the will to complete his trips, he answered with only one word: “Attitude”. He said he never ever at any time during his two epic journeys wanted to give up, as his desire to complete his trips kept him going during the good and the bad times.
Therefore it goes to show, if we want to complete any task or goal in life we need to start at the source which is our own attitude, because without it our dreams will never become reality !