"You can't be wise and in love at the same time" - Bob Dylan
At the end of Book One, Stefanie takes the plunge and sets off on her secret adventure to South Africa with Jovil, in a bid to see if she has enough energy within her to get to Tandro- the first human being to have achieved this.
It is a huge turn -around. At the start of the book, when we first meet Stefanie, she is a distraught and desperate mother caring for her critically ill son in hospital. The Stefanie in Chapter One could not possibly have imagined that she would succumb to a weakness within her to do something as crazy and dangerous as she does at the end of this book. But sometimes we choose to hear what we want to hear and this is never more the case when we are in a state of euphoria in the first stages of falling in love.
Our friends can be our greatest supporters and our most trustworthy advisors but even Rachel is perhaps at fault when she lends credence to Stefanie's choice to go to Tandro with Jovil:
Here is an excerpt from their conversation in Chapter 16:
“I think you know deep down that you have already made your decision Stefanie. You just want to hear me say it’s okay?” Rachel suggested. Stefanie nodded.
Rachel stood up, folding the blanket around her in the style of a toga dress and exhaled a dramatic deep breath. “Well, then honey, I’ll say it for you. It’s O…KAY!”
Sometimes you look for reassurance from a loving friend – the person who you can trust to validate your choices without judgment. And even though the danger signs are blaring out in front of you both, the temptation to play along with the charade, the game of “you only have one life, so go for it” is just too strong.