You want to go travelling. Your friends want to go travelling. Some people you know already went travelling in their gap year (wankers). Some people have a vague dream about quitting their jobs to go travelling. Some people have given up on going travelling because life’s surprisingly busy (and expensive) and what’s wrong with a weekend mini-break to the Peak District anyway? Other people, and there are probably quite a few of these, think going travelling is for smug, entitled, image-conscious Instagram twats.
Is the travel dream realistic?
It doesn’t matter which of the above categories you fall into. This is not a travel blog, but a travel mindset blog. Realistically, few of us have the kind of money or laissez-faire attitude it takes to ditch everything and bugger off to Cambodia, as much as we might sometimes daydream about it. As somebody who loves to hop on any kind of transport for any sort of jaunt to any sort of place other than work or my flat, I too am completely dazzled by the big, popularised idea of going travelling.
Sometimes I feel sad and antsy that I can’t afford it. Sometimes it feels like my life is on hold because how can I get a dog if I’m planning on going travelling some day? How can I afford that [insert thing I am interested in at the time] course if I want to save up for my flights?
But if I dig deep inside myself, something becomes clear. I like travelling because I like the frame of mind it puts me in. In foreign places I become suddenly very interested in anything and everything around me. Doorways. Supermarkets. Tiny museums about obscure local trades. People having a natter in the street. Cats.
Maybe travel is a mindset
That made me think. Why don’t I try to activate the travel frame of mind in my everyday life? I live five minutes away from an officially recognised Area Of Outstanding Natural Beauty (the South Downs). People travel from the other side of the world to stand precariously close to the chalk cliffs I casually walk along several times a week, plugged into music and thinking of something else entirely.
In my opinion, this is what constitutes a travel mindset:
- Being curious about absolutely everything
- Saying yes to opportunities
- Trying new things
- Being interested in people
- Doing that thing even if you can’t really be bothered
- Documenting or at least taking time to reflect on your day
- Watching the world go by
Well now I suppose you can go and do something else, or you can subscribe to this blog to get new posts delivered straight to your inbox, or you can start reading some of my previous posts now.
Bye for now.
I’ll leave you with one of my favourite quotes. Remember that nothing is fixed.
“Civilised life, you know, is based on a huge number of illusions in which we all collaborate willingly. The trouble is we forget after a while that they are illusions and we are deeply shocked when reality is torn down around us.”
– J.G Ballard