Have you ever been travelling for more than 2-3 weeks or taking a sabbatical year? Lots of my friends have been or are still travelling the world. Hiking, trekking, backpacking, travelling in the States, South America, Asia or Australia, they all have done it.
I’ve been saying for ages that one day I’m gonna go to New Zealand and walk the islands. Whenever I’m asked: “Where do you wanna go?” → New Zealand. “Where do you wanna live?” → New Zealand. “Where do you wanna retire?” → New Zealand. Alright, alright, I’m happy in England, retirement is at least 40 years away, but I still wanna go there for a few months and hike in this beautiful country – in the footsteps of Frodo and his fellowship. Yes! I am one of these Lord of the Rings-victims.
But if it’s such a big dream, there is this big question: Why don’t I just do it? Here are my excuses:
Money: I’m young and poor. I could save up, but then I’m old and feeble. There are options to travel on a low budget. Backpacking, hitch-hiking, camping, wild camping. Or travel on a work and travel scheme. But then there is the question if I still get the work and travel visa. I think, meanwhile I’m to old for that. And if I really want to spend only 2-3 months there, I don’t want to spend my time with working.
Education/Career: For the last 4 years I’ve been studying part-time in addition to my normal job. You develop a kind of “I want it to be over”-attitude and don’t want to postpone it any further. I rather finish my degree than interrupting it and starting again when I come back from my travel. Travelling after finishing the degree can be a great motivation and a fantastic reward. BUT: I’m still here, sitting on my desk, with my books surrounding me.
Job security: I guess that’s what I’m most afraid of. Giving up my job, travel, come back, and being unable to get into a new job. I’ll be broke from travelling, jumping right into bankruptcy, I’ll be homeless and die lonely under a bridge in the cold. Alright, it might not be as dramatic, but I still imagine it to be very difficult to get a new job.
(Funny enough, it’s not the unknown, that I’m afraid of. Not the risk of not finding my way around, finding my way back home or being robbed, raped, hijacked or killed. Seeing and experiencing something new is far to exciting that THAT could keep me from it.)
I guess these are the main excuses every coward would give not to travel the world. Am I the only coward? Have you thought about going somewhere for some time and still haven’t done it? Tell me why not. Give me some comfort. Or did you go travelling and had the same thoughts? What made you do it? What was the final argument the say: ‘what the hell, I’m gonna do it!’?