It has taken me a lot of time to write this blog post. Particularly because I’m not all too sure why I travel. So after months of having this screen up, here is the best ramble I could come up with.
I’ve noticed in the last few years (my prime traveling years), I seem to be on the receiving end of an odd amount of commentary on my style of travel as well as the frequency of it. None of it seems to be particularly negative, just more so things like “I can’t believe how much you travel” or “I can’t believe how many places you’ve been to!” Or even “Why do you travel so much?” Reasonable questions I suppose.
Well…it is simple.
I travel because I can.
I travel because I want to.
I travel because I love it.
I don’t dream about it, or make “wish” lists. I just make a conscious decision to do it, and then I go and do it. The lists I do make are simply there to help me keep track of my goals.
Life is about the priorities you make. I don’t own a house. I’m not married and I don’t have children. Those are not my goals. For me, my priority is to see as much as I can see, and do as much as I can do. I consider travel to be educational, to be prolific and most of all- fun. It can challenge you in ways you can not be challenged otherwise, travel gives you perspectives staying at home could not.
The thing about life is you have to live it the way you want to. Priorities are different for everyone, and I’ve grown to understand that. For me, the experiences I have given myself by traveling, I could not have gained by staying home. I have trekked to the highest peaks, swam in the lowest of seas, eaten foods from all corners of the world and been given life lessons that a standard education could have never provided. Those things did not just happen; I wasn’t “lucky” as many people like to tell me- I made these things happen.
I have been humbled by the world I have seen, and many other times really learned to appreciate all the things I do have, that far too often go unappreciated in the world I live in. I feel that it has made me a better person, and sometimes I feel I need to keep travelling to keep me humble- and better.
Please don’t get me wrong. I appreciate that people live their lives differently. Most of my friends are completely opposite to me. Most of my friends are married and have children and have houses; and that is amazing for them! But that is key- what is amazing for someone, doesn’t have to rule the path of your own life.
For me success is not measured by the idea of marriage, children or money.
My goals come in the format of wanting to and experience anything and everything I possibly can. Instead of being married by the age of 25, I want to see half the world by the time I’m 30. Instead of having 2 kids a dog and a white picket fence, I want to see the Seven Wonders of the World. I want my perspective on life and my opinions to come from a place of experience and not just something I read or have seen on tv. One day when I do have kids, and my kids have kids… I want to be able to tell them how exceptional this world really is. I want to share my experiences with them and remind them that this world is full of amazement. I want to look back at my life one day, and be proud of how I lived it. I want to be old and frail and reflect on my life and be amazed that I did all the things I set out to do. In the words of Mark Twain, “Twenty years from now you will be more dissapointed by the things you didn’t do, than by the ones you did do”. I don’t plan to be disappointed.
I understand that the frequency in which I travel is not feasible for everyone, but the trips I take, are not so extraordinary that only I could take them. Anyone can. It just takes the desire and creating the means to do so. It is no more expensive to travel, as it is to go out every single weekend. I work a lot for months on end, in order to be able to go away and tick off another item off my list; and it is a very long list.
Anything you want out of life is yours for the taking. The key is, not to dream about it. Dreaming is for the sleepers. Wake up, and make it happen. Whatever it is. There is nothing more tragic about life than to have it become stagnant.
I want my life to be extraordinary. That is why I travel.