The charm of packing your travel bag into 2021


By Ashraf Aboul Yazid Dali
President of Asia Journalist Association

CAIRO: You are now traveling to 2021, and you have to prepare your travel bag, which will help you in the coming days. What will you put in it?

I suggest that you take hope, for you will need it to resist difficult times. And do not forget the beautiful memories. Allocate a place for them, whether you have loved them since your birth, or since you joined the Asia Journalist Association, or even those that have lit up the darkness of last year. These beautiful memories will be your goods that you will exchange when life is hard on you.

Allocate a huge place in your travel bag for the family; God has given you the opportunity to be at home most of the time, to eat, work online, write your reports, read your newspapers, all of that while you are at home. Remember that you used to do that away from the family, and the opportunity for lockdown and closure came to create a space for you beside them. Let it be a warm space filled with love and understanding.

We are in a world where we need love and understanding, as we want peace with strength.
Take, in your travel bag, the best qualities you know about yourself. Be prepared to work with everyone for everyone. Always keep a smile on your face, contentment in your heart, and seriousness in your hands and mind.

We were able to overcome the ordeal of absence, thanks to technology that gave us the ability to meet across distances. We practiced democracy that did not recognize geographic boundaries, political obstacles, differences of religion, language and ethnicity, and we shared the consolation of each other about the misfortunes of the homeland, the absences of friends. We comforted friends and supported one another.

In the new year, we need one another more than ever before. We need one or more projects for us to meet and gather for. It is time for us to speak not as individuals, but as tens or hundreds spread across Asia and the world, and for our voices to be heard through more platforms.Voices that support the truth, and fight falsehood and fake news:

– The association’s Instagram account has started, and it is an opportunity to provide it with pictures. Each of us sends one picture every day, an image meaning something to him or to her and the world, and represents his or her message to friends and followers.

– On Facebook, friends, members are kindly invited to open the links to the posted topics and write their comments, or to put these links on your pages to achieve greater popularity.

– If we were prevented from traveling outside our homelands, after the airports stopped welcoming us, then let us travel to available places inside our countries , places that we have not visited before, and write about the surprises of the first meeting with those places. Share with us the experience of that trip, because we may soon meet again face to face when the skies are open again and travel resumes. These short trips could be used for short travel stories or for pictorial or video documentaries.

– 2021 may be an opportunity to consolidate relations between members in each country separately, for members to meet in each country under the banner of the Asia Journalist Association, celebrate its next birthday, each in front of a famous landmark in the country, and perhaps you will meet icons from your homeland to tell them about the history of the association, its members, its website, its magazine, its conferences and the forums that were held, the personalities that we met on our trips, and these short interviews, if filmed, might be the nucleus of YouTube videos.

– The bag may be large, but even a small bag that includes a loving heart, a smiling face, a hand patting others’ shoulders, and an idea for the future, will suffice.

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