Posted by: faultlessfinish | February 11, 2013

The Hibernating Monster

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.” – Mark Twain

Last week I happened upon a site filled with fantastic quotations about travelling (http://matadornetwork.com/bnt/50-most-inspiring-travel-quotes-of-all-time/) and felt inspired to write about the subject this week.

Much to my great chagrin, I have not done much travelling in my life. Yet. Growing up, I always assumed that sometime between high school graduation and full-time career I would go off on an epic adventure to see the world. Then university happened, and I settled comfortably into the academic routine. I grew content with my surroundings and my desire to travel faded.

The little travel bug didn’t totally disappear though. It just started hibernating.

And then a year and a half ago, in a moment of discontent, restlessness, and anxiety, I said to a friend, “I wish I could just run away for a bit. Just pick up and leave everything behind.”

“Where would you go?” she asked.

“I dunno. Costa Rica maybe?

“Why don’t you just go? Why don’t you explore that idea?”

“Well…um…”

I had no legitimate excuse. I didn’t have much money, but I did have a career that would allow me to just “pick up and go” and work abroad.

And so I went a week later. And that month away turned that hibernating little bug into a full-fledged monster. The minute I got home again, I couldn’t wait to plan my next trip. This time around though, I knew I had to be smarter with my money. I wanted to save properly and plan to go for a longer period of time.

And then I got comfortable again. I lost sight of the travel goal.

Well no more. I am writing this post as a confirmation of my intention to get out there again.

What I realized in the brief month I was away was that I want to travel not to “get away” but to learn, to immerse myself in cultures completely different than my own, to grow as a person and give back.

I want to connect with writers from around the world face to face, not just through a computer screen.

To make this happen, I know I need to focus my energy, time, and money on this goal. I know I need to sacrifice certain luxuries for a while and be smart with my budget. But I’m learning, despite how busy life is right now, that a huge, rewarding goal in the future makes a period of very hard work very worthwhile.

How do you feel about travelling? Where have you gone? Did you have to sacrifice to make it happen? I would love to hear your thoughts.

Songs of the week:

“Feels Like We Only Go Backwards” – Tame Impala

“Lazuli” – Beach House

Namaste :)

Rachel

Rocking J's Hostel

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Responses

  1. You thoughts about travelling are mine. Connecting with other cultures and creative people in other lands has to be about as good as it gets for me. Hope you get away soon, and take us along for the ride

    • I will drop you a line if I end up in your part of the world! :)

  2. Come to Bequia. You can whip me into finishing this novel for you to edit …

  3. I love travelling, and over the last couple of years have been able to do some great trips around Europe. Around France, Spain and across Italy to Hungary. Great fun and amazing stopovers. I would always say to people go, and enjoy the journey not the destination. Hence some of my blog posts and lots of my poetry has travelling themes.

    Jim

    • Sounds amazing Jim. I love living vicariously through your posts and hope to visit many of the place you write about!

  4. I travel often to the peaceful places my mind takes me, and I get strength from the mountain winds, to physically BE where you are happy being, is a gift to be appreciated, you have the soul of a traveller and a heart full of adventure, open your wings and feel the wind. :)

    • The mountains will always be my home BawB :)

  5. Let me guess, of the ones you had mentioned that one time, this was the “Nicer Hostel”? :| You are killing me. Although I bet you were able to meet more of the local people than if you were in a tourist type hotel. So, where do I send my donations for better sleeping quarters on your next trip?

    As for the travel bug, it never leaves, as mine has only been made dormant while raising kids. Once they are old enough, which is pretty darn soon, I plan on continuing. I always wanted to visit Australia, Egypt, and parts of Europe. Seeing relatives that I have only ever heard of, spend sometime where my first 3 years of childhood happened, and visit my grandparents grave in Yugoslavia. Then onto Brazil maybe or even Easter Island.

    • Haha, no this was one of the hostels that challenged me a bit. But yes, met some amazing people there and we still keep in touch! Hope you get to fulfill your travelling goals :)

      • The stinky hammock one? :)

      • Yep!

  6. My backpacking trips were the best times of my life! I learned so much and it opened my mind and gave me a whole new perspective on what’s important to me in life. I really encourage you to travel as much as you can. Do it while you’re young, enjoy every minute and realize that sometimes the travel bug will never completely disappear. At least that’s been my experience. If you need any recommendations, let me know!

    Jaclyn

    • I would love to pick your brain, Jaclyn!

  7. Travelling is one of the things that I have always wanted to do, and I’m guilty of not following this wish of mine. And yeah, I have all kind of excuses that I’m stuck at this place because of my job, family and all that… *sigh* Well atleast I accept that these are just “excuses”. Anyway good to see that you got your push, just keep it up and keep sharing your thoughts with us. :)

    • Thanks for reading, Chetan! :) I hope that someday soon you get a chance to travel. I would love to come see your part of the world.

  8. Travelling is one of the things that I have always wanted to do, and I’m guilty of not following this wish of mine. And yeah, I have all kind of excuses that I’m stuck at this place because of my job, family and all that… *sigh* Well atleast I accept that these are just “excuses”. Anyway good to see that you got your push, just keep it up and keep sharing your thoughts with us. :)

  9. Ok, so pony up – where would you like to go next, and when can you make it happen? ;) xoxo

    • Haha thanks Adrienne – always lighting a fire under me! Thinking Europe this time around.

  10. Come to the UK to meet ME :)

    • The UK is at the top of my list right now, Victoria! I would love to sit down and have tea with you!! :)

  11. Since you let Steve-French out, there are many beautiful places in Europe. This is one of the places on my list. http://www.photocroatia.com/GALLERY/index.php?groupid=17&ee_lang=eng

    Have fun picking!!

  12. I was nodding along with this entire post Rach!!! I unapologetically and selfishly place travel amongst my top three priorities for so many reasons. I discovered during my first excursion living abroad that travel truly is the best education that exists, and furthermore the only thing that satisfies my restless spirit’s curious desire to see it all. I don’t often ‘tour,’ rather move to a brand new foreign place and soak it all in, the good and the bad. There is nothing I love more than mastering a new metro system, or exploring aisles of strange grocery stores. In terms of “sacrifice” to make it happen, the things I have given up are no longer seem that important to me – I haven’t had a permanent home with ‘nice grown up things for years. All of my material possessions fit into one car. And while design magazines and damn pinterest ignite jealously, I know I wouldn’t have it any other way. I LOVE this post. My piece of advice to my family is always, “book the flight,” and everything will fall into place, or, will be forced to. Not every trip will be perfect, thats part of the adventure!

    • You are an inspiration to me, Chels!! Thanks for reading :) I totally agree – I would much rather collect experiences than material possessions.


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