It seems so surreal that it was almost a month ago that I was sitting on my bedroom floor in tears, scared to death that in a few days I’d be leaving my friends, my family and the world of comfort, the world I knew, for the big wide world I didn’t. I felt so unprepared. I wasn’t.
Sure my bag was overpacked, I was overly confident about a serious trek, my sister did give me the jacket literally off her back mere hours before I left the house and my credit card turned up when I’d already reached the airport but these things, they work out,one way or another.
So what has one month travelling taught me?
Yeah I know one month right? That hardly makes me an expert, but I’ve begun and that really is the hardest part. My friends are about to come out and join me and I know they’re packing their fears in with their undies and their apprehension with their passport (at least I hope they’ve packed their passport?!). So, without trying to sound pretentious, a few things to bare in mind…
You are not alone.
Yeah OK so you’re on a plane, you’re by yourself, they’ve sat a snorer next to you and a screaming child in front of you, but you’re on your way to adventure. Right now there’s so many people where you’re heading waiting to share, join and talk about the adventure you’re each on and if there’s not? Then hey those local people are pretty lovely too.
I’ve missed home like crazy but I’m not alone, tomorrow I set off to Chitwan Park on a safari with a girl I met at breakfast. Check into a hostel over a guesthouse if you need the company because they have it in abundance!
They wear clothes, get sick and wash in every country.
If you’ve forgotten it, lost it, miss it, need it, they have it. I agonised over so many packing lists worrying what to bring. Secret: I’m sending half of it home, turns out I’ve worn a £3 pair of trousers I bought here way more than the £20 ones I bought at home.
Anti-malarials: got them here for 60p.
Shampoo & sunscreen: shock horror here too. Hell they were selling it at 4500m up in the Himalayas! I’m just avoiding the whitening stuff, don’t want to blind people with my legs!!
Life at home will go on without You, just like your life will go on without home.
As someone that is scared of missing out or being replaced this is hard for me but, apparently, you don’t have to be right next to each other to share your life. I’m speaking to some people more now than I did when I lived down the road.
Yoga pants are totally your thing (enough said).
Culture shock exists (…and is mind expandingly awesome and terrifying all at the same time).
You got this!!
Now for my personal stuff:
I always thought that there were these people who knew everything about travel, the experts who could answer everything. The wonderful thing about travel is the that in every new country you’re a newbie, I shared sense of wonder, like a child on Christmas day tearing at the paper to get to the wonders inside, travellers hop on new buses, walk around new corners eager for the journey excited for what they’ll find.
I’m a fast walker by nature but walking the Annapurna circuit only being able to take one. slow. step. at. a. time. Meant you had to slow down, stop, lookup, look around,realise holy crap I’m in this amazing place. So often we only walk (or drive more often than not) as a means to an end never enjoying the journey, we go by so much, take notice of so little. What if you just stopped next time you’re walking or driving (in a safe place) and just look around, would you even appreciate every thing we have. Its bloody wonderful.
This big wide world is nothing to be fearful of at all. The only thing you should fear, is that you don’t see enough of it.