Sail away from the safe harbour. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover – Mark Twain.
The concept of travel means different things for different people. For some, it’s getting away for a couple of weeks after a long year working all the hours and more. For others, it’s experiencing new things: things that you’d never experience from your day to day life. For me – like many others – it is a way of life that I will forever miss.
I never imagined the amount of turbulence I have experienced in the months after returning from my eleven months of exploring different corners of this vast planet; in fact, I was excited to return home; to get my life together; to be an adult; to go back to work. I couldn’t have been more wrong about that excitement. I thought I was ready to move on from living out of a backpack, that I had had my fill of magical wanderlust days – at least for an extended period of time. It turns out, even four months after, I am craving some kind of traveller lifestyle once more.
Travelling completely changes you. I don’t know how many different posts have described that change. I’ve written it in so many different ways, plenty of different times – throughout the course of my travelling and afterwards too. This is simply my outlet, and if there’s any backpacker or traveller or tourist who feels the same, then I know that I’m writing this for them too.
Travelling taught me a lot of things, some that are too personal for the blog right now, some that I will sing about until end of time, some that are completely obvious, all of which I will remember and take with me whenever I enter a new situation whether that is during more travelling, or in everyday life.
When I sit and think about life in general, I sometimes get so wrapped up in my own worries and my own drama (the majority of which is all in my head) and wind myself up so much that I end up feeling really shitty and thinking that I have the crappest life ever – hold on, let’s get the oh woe me bucket because I clearly don’t have a shit life – sometimes I don’t know how to appreciate some of the smaller “happinesses” at the moment.
YOUR LIFE IS SO TINY IN THE GRAND SCHEME OF THINGS
How many people are there in the world? 7.442 billion in 2016, according to Google. That is a lot of people and what am I contributing to earth right now? A whole lot of nothing. Travelling makes you see how other people live – some are literally in rags on dusty streets whilst tourists are up the road in a fancy hotel. Culture is an incredible thing. Different lives have different rates of what a good day is. I’ll have a good day if I’ve got everything done on my to do list in work; I’ve done something blog productive; I’ve had “me time”; I’ve successfully been to the gym (not all of these, but a combination of a couple in one day). Other people, however, have a good day if they’ve had a half-decent meal and just made it through.
DON’T DO SOMETHING YOU DON’T LOVE
Life is what you make it. I’m a huge believer in if you don’t adore doing something, don’t do it. I know. It’s harder than it seems when it comes to having a successful career in something you’re absolutely passionate about. Sometimes your job or your career right now is your stepping stone for something bigger and better to come. I hated working in Charters Towers, but I saved a lot of money (which I then blew) for the next month or so of travelling. Travelling reminds you of the things that you adore doing in life, whether that is something as simple as walking through the shallow waters of the ocean, or creating the perfect piece of prose, or going for that dream that seems impossible, but oh so worth it.
BELIEVE IN YOURSELF – YOU CAN DO IT
Everyone has down days where utter self-belief completely goes out of the window. I feel like travelling reinstates that, especially if you’ve travelled solo. If I got onto a plane that took me to Australia on my own, worked in the middle of nowhere with one genuine friend, drove for a total of fifteen hours across different Australian states with just the radio for company, I should be able to conquer pretty much anything that life throws at me. We are all capable of so much more than we give ourselves credit for. Maybe we should all book a trip somewhere completely different to remind us that we can survive any situation that life throws at us. It’s all about perspective.
LIFE IS SHORT – YOU DON’T KNOW WHEN IT’S GOING TO BE OVER
Life really is incredibly short. I hate to be a youthful moaner but I’m already 25 and I keep thinking I’m 18/19. Where did those years go? All my elders tell me: “You’re still so young. Wait until you get to my age.” I remember leaving for the airport to catch my flight to Sydney. I thought a year is so, so long. I’m going to miss everyone so much. And, look at me now. My life in Australia is over. Already. The days passed so, so quickly. In terms of you don’t know when it’s going to be over, I don’t want that to be a morbid statement (although there is that too), but in terms of your current situation and lifestyle, who knows what is around the corner? You could get an incredible opportunity. Likewise, you could lose your job. Anything can happen and we need to remember to live in the moment more. I am trying to do that so much more. For example, I booked to go visit JR in London this weekend after work, despite him coming home next weekend. Money-wise, it’s a little silly – especially with trying to save – but we get to spend some more quality time together which we never have enough of. I feel like when I travelled, I lived for the day a lot more than I live for the day in England: I’m always looking ahead, whereas every day was more of an adventure whilst backpacking. That being said, I am trying to enjoy each moment more because these moments may not happen again.
THE LIFE OF A TRAVELLER WILL NEVER BE COMPLETE
Travel is inside of me and I can’t tear it away from my body, just as I can’t drain my body of my blood. I still crave the excitement at the airport, getting cosy on the plane and heading somewhere different, even if it’s just for a couple of days. I love exploring a new place, even if it’s simply walking through the streets and finding a new café to try their hot chocolate… and see how it measures up to other worldly hot chocolates. If you love travelling, you’ll never, ever get enough.
How has travel affected your views on life? Has it made you see life in a positive or negative life? I’d love to know how travel affects other people, to see if it has the same impact as it has on me.
Love, Faye xo