Updated: Feb 21
Whenever I think about Ukraine, I do so with a big smile. I have so many happy memories from there. It all started a while ago I was given the opportunity to perform in Ukraine for the first time. Although I knew very little about the country back then, when I got the call, I decided to grab the opportunity with both hands.
A week later, I was sitting on my own at Rome Airport at midnight, waiting for my flight to Kiev, when the following thoughts suddenly invaded my mind:
"Rachelle, I know you are extremely spontaneous and you’re always trying new things, but come on, Ukraine! You don’t know anyone in Ukraine. What the heck are you doing? This is crazy, even by your standards!".
As tempting as it was to surrender to this sudden gush of fear, I decided to drown my doubts, by thinking about how exciting it would be to be in Eastern Europe for the first time, experiencing a new culture and people.
A few hours later, I landed in Kiev. I was met by a lady that I did not know, but who cheerfully held my name on a sign. The Driver, Igor, said hello, smiled pleasantly and subsequently took off for my hotel, where my new colleagues were waiting for me and where I finally after 12 hours of suspense, breathed (discreetly) the biggest sigh of relief. To cut a long story short, it turned out to be one of the best experiences of my life to date. We sang across the country in five different cities. Met some wonderful people, had sooo much fun and out-of-the-box experiences such as getting the Presidential Suite on a 10-hour overnight train across the country. Never seen anything like that before: a luxury hotel on a train. It introduced me to a world of touring that I never knew existed. I have since been to Ukraine countless times. More important than all of this, it taught me a huge lesson: Each of us must learn to silence our fears with faith and step out.
Now, I am not saying that we should be reckless, (please don’t be reckless) and perhaps travelling solo to the other end of the continent, is not the right thing for you to do. However, if you ever find yourself in a situation where you are faced with an opportunity, that fills you
with both the fear (of the unknown) and a peace and excitement or what could be, then maybe, just maybe, you should go for it! There will be moments when you question everything, but fortune favours the brave. Take calculated risks. Try new things. You never know where it might lead you. One thing is for sure: you will learn a lot along the way.
My thoughts and prayers are with the beautiful people of Ukraine at this very tense time. May God have mercy on your beautiful country and people and give you peace Xx