I am finally back from solo travelling!
The past four months have been one hell of a ride. I went to Bali, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, Italy, Croatia, Greece (twice!) and Austria, all with a 20kg suitcase in tow. All I can say is that it was an incredible, crazy and challenging experience. I got stalked by a Frenchman in Bali, got hit by a motorcycle in Thailand, got trapped in a room with a Giant Huntsman spider in Laos, got stuck in a flood in Cambodia, got robbed in Italy, got food poisoning AND alcohol poisoning, missed two flights and had my heart broken in Greece. It was all wonderful. The best part of my travels, however, were the beautiful and kind people I met from all over the world who welcomed me, housed me, fed me and made me laugh and smile until body parts hurt. It’s true that it’s the people you meet along the way that makes your journey truly special.
Now I am back, I am definitely going through post travel depression. I feel like I’m moving backwards, coming home to a familiar environment where nothing and no one has really changed. I feel restless and have been up at 5am each morning to clean and organize the house and job hunt. Most of all, I feel sad. I miss travelling so much and being constantly on the move. I miss being in unfamiliar places everyday and the constant challenges, surprises and learning curves that come with it. I miss having my senses inspired and my mind enriched with things no job or education could ever give me. I even miss having all my earthly possessions fit inside a suitcase.
My friend called me a nomad, a person who has no permanent home but is constantly on the move, and being at home has made me realize that this is the lifestyle that I desire above all else. I want to call the world my home and constantly explore it. I had thought that I would want to settle down when I got home, but I don’t. I realized after much self-reflection that the only way I will ever be truly happy is if I am working and travelling, and best manifestation of that is if I go overseas again soon but this time to do work experience instead.
Don’t get me wrong, I have it so good in New Zealand. I am so completely, unfairly blessed with loving & supportive friends and family, a beautiful home in an exquisite country, and a well paying job if I want it. I really have it all here. But here is where comfort, familiarity, the same old, same old is. I want more than that. I want discomfort and challenges and strange countries and interesting people and bizarre food.
It’s been hard for me to process this, to accept this nomadic aspect of myself. A realization is unfolding within me that I’m not the kind of girl that has her life all packaged neatly in a box. I’m the girl who doesn’t have an apartment, a car, a relationship or even a place to hang her clothes. I’m the girl who has never committed to a job for more than one year. I’m the girl who lives and breathes and is always daydreaming about travel. I had an, ‘Oh God,’ moment when I realized that I’m actually one of those people who works to travel. It has been like that for the last three years and I believe it will be that way for a while.
There is always a blessing and a curse to every kind of lifestyle, but life has an interesting way of remaking itself every once in a while. What you think you want now can change suddenly and you just have to swim with the current or get beaten up by it. This is my time to explore the world we call our home. This is my small gap of complete freedom and no commitments to heed my heart’s desires. And even if it leads me down lonely and wild and unpredictable paths, how can I ever say no?