Floating high above the waves, my body drives through the air like a white cloud over the ocean. Surrounded by layers, upon layers, of endless shades of blue in the sea and into the sky. My yellow bikini mimics the sun, pushing the island farther and farther behind.
Through rose tinted sunglasses, I’m living in a realm of vivid colour. The horizon bisects sheets of fire, the beautiful kind.
It’s the only time in my life where my current experience is quite literally a magical romantic novel, with me in love with the earth.
I know, I’ve handed you a plate of the finest cheese there, but it’s how I felt at the time, in paradise.
Eight months ago, I decided to quit my job to travel the world. Welcome to my blog post on real Wanderlust.
It’s a personal post, but I’m happy to share my experiences and to remind myself of why I did it. I’ll re-read this post when I’m a little old lady.
Why did I just pack up my bags and leave home? Here are eight reasons:
I was a miserable, and grumpy cat. I needed to make a drastic change. Quitting and leaving is a significant risk. Things just kept happening, and they pushed me to the point where I had to do something about it. I have always believed in signs. If you aren’t living life as you should, the universe will make it clear somehow. If there’s an opportunity, you’ll find out.
I hadn’t done the one thing I wanted to do before my next Birthday. Every day, I woke up and I asked myself (whilst poking my island desktop computer screen): if the world ended tomorrow, would I of been happy? Had I done all the things I wanted to do? Have I ticked enough of my bucket list? The answers were no. Always, always, chase your dreams.
I crave adrenaline. As a kid, theme parks were my second home. I was a naughty and weird kid. I always had a “bright” idea. Travelling allows you to express yourself and channel your creative outlet. It enables you to do amazing things all the time and every day. Our world is filled with ventures that if you take the plunge to do, you’ll remember forever. My bucket list was extensive but to a name a few, I wanted to go temple hopping, visit an orphanage, cuddle a koala bear, skydive, jump into the ocean and visit at least one world heritage site. I’ve now done all of those things and loved every second.
Travelling allows you to see that there is the world out there and that there is just so much more than your everyday routine. Learning about other cultures changes the way you think. Your mind will open. You’ll learn that diversity is a strength and the spice of life. Travelling at least once for a good amount of time will change your perspective forever.
Not just because I’m a food obsessed individual, but food is an essential ingredient of human life – survival, culture, tradition, lifestyle and relationships. Go and explore a hodgepodge of ingredients and intoxicating aromas. I’m still salivating over fresh, and fragrant broths in Asia. I shamelessly ‘Foodstagram’ because my images remind me of how I felt at that time. And yes, that hashtag above will link you to my foodporn Foodgasms.
I wanted to see poverty. We’re very lucky but sheltered in the Western world. We see media behind tinted glass. I saw struggles that you wouldn’t think were possible. Being present physically in a third world country is a real eye opener.
I wanted to explore my heritage. If you’re an ethnic minority living in a multi-cultural society, go and visit where your parents are from — you will learn so much about yourself.
You’ll appreciate your friends and family a lot more; you’ll appreciate the comfort you never knew you had.
Lastly, it (hopefully) helps you figure what you want out of life. Once you’ve seen what’s available in the world, it makes decision-making so much easier. You can decide whether you want to relocate abroad, continue travelling, volunteer or go home.
While backpacking, I started to blog and this was my first post. I said I would let you know if it was the right decision. I can confirm wholeheartedly; it was the best decision of my life.
Am I suggesting that everyone should travel? Well no, it’s not for everyone. If all-inclusive package holidays to Shagaluf is your thing, then go for it, but it won’t be life-changing. Travelling is physically demanding and will throw you out of your comfort zone. If you’re not willing to engage in another culture, then travelling will not work for you.
Yes. Of course, I asked myself “what if I get kidnapped, like in that film, Taken?”, But when you get there, everyone else is in the same boat as you. It’s safe if you’re smart. Always be vigilant.
Everyone has different dreams and aspirations: you may love your job, have the itch to start a business, buy a house, start a family — all of these things are life-changing experiences that people do in their own time. Do what you want to do. It’s never too late to follow your dreams.
If you are going travelling, have a wonderful time and take lots of pictures. You may be homesick at first, but it wears off, I swear.
Every day is different, exciting and you’ll want to live it with intensity. You’ll meet so many people from all over the world from diverse backgrounds and cultures who will have many stories to tell you. It all happens so fast. I get so excited when I hear that someone has decided to go backpacking.
Have so much fun and don’t forget to Skype your parents from time to time.
There’s a lovely quote by author J.R.R. Tolkien that pops up a lot, “Not all those who wander are lost”.
In Asia, I travelled with G Adventures on the Indochina Discovery and LOVED it. Dare to book your dream adventure? If you’re heading to OZ, pop into your local PeterPans branch, while hopping onto their free internet, I booked several tours with them as they always had the best deals. I booked all of my hostels through Hostel Bookers and Hostel World.
Ps. If you’ve already headed off and think you have a little nugget of wisdom to share, please leave it in the comment section below. I would also love to hear your adventures whether in you’re in the planning stage or you’ve just landed home.
Location: Zi World