Things are changing. I’m sitting here chugging my third cup of hot coffee and typing this during my last few hours of work in Latisana Italy. I’ve steadily pushed a growing pile of things to pack into the corner of my room and I’m on my last two weeks of school. I’m eagerly peering through the door at this new life with anticipation, waiting for the day to come when I can step over the threshold.
Long Term Travel is the Life for Me
Life is short. In many ways, this feels more like an ending rather than a beginning and I catch myself reflecting back over the path that lead me to this point. As I look back, I realize that I’m not the same person that started this journey 2 years ago. As I worked towards my dream, like a lump of clay I was molded into a stronger and well-rounded person. While some things haven’t changed, travel is till my number one priority, there are distinct parts of me that I hardly recognize. It feels as if I’m staring into a mirror and barely recognize the person staring back.
I see people write posts such as “One Year of Travel has Taught Them”, or “How Long-Term Travel tips and How it Changes You”. Well, I’m not that far yet, but I am going to write what I know and this is how two years of saving has changed me.
Ok, maybe not “change” as much as expand. A couple of years ago, all I wanted to do was travel. My dream scenario involved winning the lottery and spending the rest of my life traveling the world without a care. Lazy, huh? Well, my dream has expanded, and I’m about to write a sentence that would have been unthinkable 2 years ago. I want to work.
Traveling the world indefinitely is still the dream, but it’s expanded to include some work. I want to build something for myself, specially this site and (spoiler alert) a couple of others in the works. I love A Backpacker’s Tale, and one day I hope to turn it into a business that inspires others to take the path less traveled, and travel ( does that work).
Long Term Travel and Saving To Travel Will Change You!
While that road is still long and full of uncertainty, I do have big dreams and ambitions for this humble little site. They’re mixed in so much with my dream of seeing the world; they have become intertwined and now they’re the same.
Anyone who knows me will tell you that I’m not much of a grown up. I’ve just never been good at it and I’ll be the first to point out, I’m still not the most mature 28-year-old on the planet. For example, two years ago my brother bought me some toy missiles and a squirt gun for Christmas.
I’ve just never understood why we the older we get, the less fun we can have. I actually have a theory that one reason people have kids is so they secretly can play with toys again. While I still love those things, I’ve grown up a bit. Before if I was juggling school, work, and trip planning, a couple of those balls would get dropped. Over the last several months, I’ve become more responsible and learned how juggle them all, even when it hurts.
Not made of Glass
I’m strong, not strong like let me squeeze into the worlds tiniest shirt, head to the gym, and throw up more weights than Hulk Hogan, but saving, working, school, and starting side projects have taught me that I’m not breakable. I’ve taken my share of hits and experienced hard times, but through focus and hard work, I have managed to exceed my own expectations.
I’m a Workaholic and great at Saving Money to Travel
I hate working a 9-5, it makes me feel stuffy like I’m wearing a tightly buttoned collar. Don’t worry I’m not going to bore you with my weekly schedule, but I will say it is a lot.
But Saving to Travel is worth it, am I right?!
Combining everything, it is well over 100 hours a week and I’ve only had a hand full of days off (20 I think) in the past two years. I not bragging, I just learned that I’ll put up with hell in the pursuit of my dream. You know what I’ve learned from all that work?
Well for starters, it will make you go a little insane, but more importantly, I’ve learned when push comes to shove, I’ll twist my arm, grit my teeth, and force myself to do what I have to for long term travel. A valuable thing to know about yourself when your traveling through places, like Latisana Italy or Deli, India.
Saving to Travel can be easy if you are willing to work for it!
Check out my list of saving money to travel tips here.
If You can Dream it You can do it
When I started this pursuit, I had no Idea if I could save what I needed. It would have been easy to revert back to taking 1 to 3 month trips when shit hit the fan or when life was stressful, but I not a quitter. When things got tough, I didn’t find my dream shrinking instead I used the frustration and stress to fuel and expand my dream (After all, this started out as a 7 month trip, which has now evolved into a life of long term travel). I poured all my hope into reaching this goal and I have learned I’m capable of more than I ever realized. If you really believe you can do something, you can, and anyone who says otherwise is trying to sell you something.
I Still Have a lot to Learn
Lastly, and the most important thing I’ve learned, is that I know nothing.
I might have tons of savings tricks, travel tips about flying and backpacking travel tips stored in my head, but I still have an endless amount to see, experience, and learn.
I’ve discovered so much about myself in the last 2 years; just think how much more I’ll know after a couple of years on the road. I’ll be getting out of my confront zone, learning to deal with loneliness, and adjusting to long-term life on the road and dozens of flights a year as I make my way from to spend 3 days in Rome before I head across the world and slowly make my way through Asia until I reach Seoul.
If we are constantly shaped and conditioned by our experiences, then I’m about to have the biggest reshaping of my life. I have grown so much walking the path that has led me here and yet, I still only know a fraction of who I am. However, I do know who I have it in myself to be, and I’m willing to work and fight to become him.
Life on the road involves constant change and there is always something to learn. Travel is as much as an inward exploration as an outward one. I’m ready to step through the door and undertake the greatest journey of my life, my journey.