It was a beautiful fall day. The leaves were turning the forest into a kaleidoscope of natural wonder. Everyone from young children to adrenaline junkies (not mutually exclusive) were having the times of their lives zipping, jumping climbing and laughing through the trees at Boundless Adventures, just north of Manhattan in Purchase, NY.
While this might sound like a typical weekend day at Boundless Adventures, it most certainly was not. The adventurers that day were diplomats from around the globe, participating in a special family program sponsored by the Hospitality Committee for United Nations Delegations.
In attendance that day were delegates to the United Nations from Algeria, Belgium, Germany, Greece, Jordan, Pakistan, Samoa, Thailand, Tunisia, and Ukraine.
Let me be clear. This was not a work event, and had nothing to do with world politics, and everything to do with making new friends and having fun. As many of the delegates in attendance are new to their postings in New York, most had never met each other. After several hours of experiential adventure, many new friendships were made, and I would imagine that each walked away with a little better understanding of each other’s cultures. On that note, I was fed an array of awesome new dishes, and gained about five pounds of multi-cultural sophistication. We also found out that our dog Ralphie (pictured above) has a strong preference for Greek and Jordanian cuisine.
It has been said that a person needs to step out of their comfort zone in order to grow. This was certainly a day for personal growth and expanding horizons. Who knows? Maybe some of the personal connections made that day will foster easier communications when the delegates are back in a professional diplomatic setting.
Not that I think that we can achieve world peace at an Aerial Adventure Park, but maybe we can start to better understand each other one tree at a time.