Read time – 3 minutes

Tales from the Exodus Collective

We’re inviting Exodus Collective members to share their experience exploring the world with Exodus. From life-changing journeys to unforgettable encounters, we want to hear your immersive stories.

To share your adventures, get in touch and send us an email. Our contact details can be found at the end of the blog. This month’s submission is from Jan Collis, who travelled with us on Sicilian Volcanoes & Etna parkrun.

Jan’s Tale

Last year I took my very first holiday on my own, no I’m not twenty, let’s say I’m mature. Throughout my life, I had always compromised on holidays.

I had almost always agreed to go where everyone else had wanted to go and fitted in with what other people wanted to do. Yes, I’m a pleaser, a let’s-not-rock the boat personality.

Suddenly my circumstances changed dramatically and kind friends and relatives asked me along on holidays. Not this time I thought and the words “No thank you came unexpectedly out of my mouth”, I’m not sure who was the most surprised?

Anyhow, I’m a great believer in fate and to me, it was exactly this when an email popped into my inbox with an offer on a parkrun holiday to Sicily. Perfect, I love parkrun and had never been to Sicily.

etna parkrunEtna parkrun

It was an escorted tour, therefore not a lot of chance of me getting lost or kidnapped and so I reached for the credit card, this is what they are for. Before I could dither and change my mind I had put that deposit down and booked myself a place.

Soon, case packed, passport gripped in hand, my good friend dropped me at the airport. OMG how liberating it was to check in on my own, go to the bar, whichever one I wanted. Sit on my own watching the world go by.

The only time I felt a little apprehensive was when the group was gathered together at the other end but saying that I’m sure there were a few others with butterflies as well.

As it turned out we stopped for a lunch and although they were a diverse bunch, we all had running and travel in common. This, of course, made for no lack of conversation and it was a lovely easy introduction to everyone.

As the holiday progressed I discovered never to judge people because the most unassuming people seemed to have accomplished the most extraordinary achievements.


They had collectively run myriads of marathons, ultras and beyond. Scaled mountains and visited far-flung places. In fact, one certain individual had literally encouraged millions of people to get out of bed on a Saturday morning and run 5k.

So what did I get from this holiday? Well, Sicily was fabulous, and the company was exceptional. (Second reunion coming up) Would I do it again? Absolutely, in a flash, I would.

Oooh, by the way, much to the astonishment of my family and myself I met a rather lovely man – lucky me.

Exodus Collective member, Jan Collis

To submit your story from your travels with Exodus, please send in a Word document format to the following email address:

Discover more trips to Sicily below.