Long-term travel with no fixed plan, address or income isn’t for everybody. We understand that. But like the many others before us who have set out to embark on this slightly outlandish journey (well, outlandish to others – to us, it’s a dream come true) we’ve had to deal with the rather interesting comments others have made upon hearing our plans. For every message of support that we get, we also get some overly cautious questions.
The problem is, many of these questions have obviously also gone through our minds too. Well, mine anyway. I tend to overthink things to the point where I can turn what was a previously great idea in to something completely terrible. So I’ve had to wrestle with these thoughts and convince myself that my initial, gut reaction is the right one. After all, I’ve wanted to do this my whole life. I won’t let a few tiny doubts hold me back.
Here’s a roundup of some of the best naysayer comments so far, along with my responses.
But, don’t you guys want to like, settle down and get married?
Sigh. As much as I look forward to the day that Ankit and say ‘I do,’ marriage isn’t the be all and end all of life. Kick-ass experiences are. We want to see as much of this amazing world as we can. We want to meet new people and learn about how others live. We want to watch the sunrise over South America. We want to dance salsa in Cuba. We want to eat street food in Thailand. We want to fill our minds with the most amazing memories to have a great story to tell the grandkids someday. And yes, while a big fat Indian/Greek wedding is on the cards, right now we’ll make do with a big fat Indian/Greek adventure.
What about your jobs?
While this one is more applicable to Ankit right now, I had to face this question when I quit my job a few years back with the intention of going travelling. The truth is, we’ve both individually established that we’re way more suited to working for ourselves, as we’ve always felt stifled and unsatisfied in office jobs. Our trip around the world is actually liberating us and giving us the opportunity to try and make a living doing what we love. In our case, leaving our jobs was the best thing that we could do. So long, office boredom!
You’re going to sell your amazing car?!
Ankit and I own a beauty of a Camaro. In fact, she’s a beauty/beast hybrid, considering how she roars on the motorway. And yes, we will be sad to see her go, but sometimes you have to clear the way for new and exciting things to come into your life. When you sell all your belongings you free yourself up for travel and adventure. Yes, we could stay in the office jobs that make us miserable, keep the beautiful car and apartment, and enjoy them during the weekend while we hate our lives for the rest of the week. Or we can give these things up to have the adventure of a lifetime. I think that’s an exchange worth making.
Isn’t it dangerous to travel this way?
Hmm, well everything we do in life has a certain element of risk. We don’t have any plans to go to Afghanistan or Iraq in the near future (somehow I don’t think we’ll find mojitos and dreamy beaches there), and we’re both responsible adults with a lot of common sense between the two of us (or so we’d like to think). Don’t worry, mum and dad – we’ll be fine.
Long term travel is just for hippies and drop outs
Thankfully this wasn’t actually a comment made by someone we know, rather it was something I read on Twitter. The one thing I cannot stand is people who make judgments about other people’s lifestyles. While I completely hate working in an office, for example, I don’t criticise people who enjoy it. Likewise, why people have to judge a lifestyle choice is beyond me. We’re not harming anybody, so what we do is our business. And no, we’re neither hippies or drop outs. We just want to see the world.
How can you not have a fixed life plan?!
Yes, we don’t know where this journey will take us. And yes, we have no idea where we’ll be this time next year. But when you think about it logically, do any of us actually really know? In this unpredictable game that is also known as life, plans are an illusion. In all reality, none of us even know if we’ll be here tomorrow. We all act like we’re invincible when the truth is a lot more sobering. So why would I make a plan for next year, when all I have is the here and now, and right here, in the here and now, I want to go and see the world? To us, this moment is all that matters.
Now please, everyone, stop worrying and wish us well even if you do think we’re absolutely crazy!