I have been travelling around since I was a baby. When I was 6 months old I went with my parents to Yugoslavia, when I was 18 months old I went to New Orleans and then Canada. I then spent every school holiday travelling in a car/train for 3 1/2 hours from Birmingham to Newcastle to visit my family. And every family holiday since then mainly in Spain or Florida. So travel sickness has never been an option for me. I’ve been used to planes, trains and automobiles from the get-go. Bottle fed wanderlust indeed.
Sometimes I almost don’t understand travel-sickness or travel-nerves because I’ve never had it myself. But I think I may understand it a little more next year. Having only covered a small part of Europe and the US over and over, I have absolutely no idea about how I’m going to feel going to places which are going to present me with quite the culture shock.
It’s going to be hard. And although I can prepare myself with all the guidebooks and reading, it’s the emotional preparation that is going to be the toughie.
I think last night I got a bit of foresight into what it’s going to be like saying goodbye to everyone. I got quite teary at the thought of it to be honest and realised it’s going to be VERY difficult. Especially realising that for a year and a half I’m going to be hard to contact, hard to talk to because of massive time-differences and generally a pain in the butt. Go Go Facebook and Skype eh!
So much will happen here. My fear is that I’ll end up missing really important things like weddings and baby showers etc (coz I can tell we’re approaching this territory oh myyyy!), but if there was a way to come back for those (ie money) I absolutely would.
I’ve been contemplating getting an iPad, but nearer the time, so hopefully it’s even lighter and thinner etc etc, so I can pack it. I know it’s mental to have something like that with you, and I’m going to have to carry it EVERYWHERE and hide it (even when I’m trying to use it) but it will be so nice to have something like that to try and keep in touch better with the world. Obviously I would make sure I had stellar insurance for such things.
I guess moving from my hometown where many of my friends are, down to London last year, was a good start to the preparation. It got me in the swing of meeting new people, making life work on a budget, looking after myself without any parental help and used to being further away from family.
And I guess that’s why so many people go on to do trips like this after uni. You’ve already prepared yourself. You’ve been living on a major budget, in less-than-perfect living conditions, meeting new people, living away from your home/family/other friends.
But I’m happy I’m doing this at this stage in my life, because I have it all much more figured out now than I did in my early 20s. Not totally figured out but I’m in a much better frame of mind than I ever was. I’ve been through the stuff I needed to, I’ve worked through it, got to the other side, worked the boring jobs (still doing unfortnately but to save for this), learnt the hard career lessons and now I’M READY FOR YOU WORLD.
So don’t go thinking, just because you’re not at uni anymore that you can’t do this. If you still don’t have any hardcore commitments, then why the hell not?! Later in life, travelling almost makes more sense, you’re more ready for it than you think. And it really doesn’t matter how old you are, or even if you have commitments (that will allow you to save and do this), THEN DO IT! My belief is that regret is the worst thing in the world, so don’t allow it. Just do. Think about consequences of course, but just try it, research it, see if it’s feasible to you and that’s it. It’s that simple.
You will have no What If’s, no Shoulda, Woulda Coulda’s. Just that awesome feeling of accomplishment. That you made a decision and went for it. And the people you love, if they love you too, will be absolutely be waiting for you at the end of it all. With open arms (and for me hopefully also all my fave English must-haves like Cadbury’s and Yorkshire puddings and ham & pease pudding sandwiches!! haha).