I’m sitting here in the Queen Alia Airport in Amman Jordan, fresh off a 12 hour flight from Chicago, wide-eyed and struggling to fight off jet lag. The airport is still and quiet. A few Muslims are kneeling west saying their daily prayers as the sun sinks behind the endless desert. Sitting around waiting for my last connecting flight, I can’t help but reflect at this brief moment, at the decision that got me here and how I’m balancing the edge of a life of first and last.
Travel is art
Everything I’ve done this past week has been a last. Eating the last of my favorite nachos (yum), teaching my last students, and saying my last goodbyes. Everywhere I went I was finishing up the last parts of that life and peering out into the new life ahead of me; a world of firsts in which every day is filled with something new and exciting to see and experience.
Time for Adventure
For the last six years, my life has been about exploration and the freedom that only travel can give me. Almost two years ago, I traded this freedom in order to obtain a lasting dream that I could extend my freedom. Tackling hard work, stress, loss, and doubt along the way. I had faith I could make my dream my reality and, travel the world and cross of my bucket list. I’m now eagerly grasping the freedom that I’ve missed so dearly, a privilege that I have promised not to take for granted.
The dream was worth chasing; the risks were worth taking. I am ready to explore the world. Once again I can choose where I go, when I go, and how to get there. This randomness is the breeding ground for adventures, and I’m ready to have them.
Travel is Art
I believe, deep within my core, that travel is an art form. The musician strikes his chords and notes, fitting each little note together to form a song. In the same way, the traveler visits and explores each country; each a piece of a greater song that forms the symphony of our lives.
The traveler is also like the painter. He seeks to expand and express his art through his journey of seeing and sharing in traditions of other cultures. A painter will leak their imagination onto their canvas as a way to express how they see the world. For the traveler, our wanderlust is our canvas, our brush is our freedom, and our paint is the experiences we encounter. With these tools, a traveler expresses how he sees the world, slowly filling the canvas of his life. For me, that moment has finally come. The paints are laid out. I’m standing before me canvas, and I can’t wait to see the masterpiece take shape.
How do you guys feel? Is travel an art?
14 thoughts on “The Journey Begins”
hey Stephen! I really identify with the things that you write and am really glad that you have finally embarked on the journey… All the best for Mongol Rally!
I have been thinking about full time travelling for a long time too, but I need a few clarifications before I am realistic think about the setting off. Can you please write a blog and throw some light on the 3 aspects of long term travel that I’m most confused with:
1. Did you think about life after this trip? I always fear what will happen when I come back after a year or two of travels to a passport full of stamps but no job or money. I have a very comfy job that I am only doing because of money. I am sure you thought about this too, and have yourself the go ahead. So clearly you have some plans. Please share 🙂
2. Did you plan the whole trip all at once (like book the tickets etc) or do you plan to improvise?
3. How did u calculate how much money is good enough to cover the expenses of the trip?
Have fun, and keep writing!
Just found the site man, good luck and maybe we’ll cross paths somewhere out there!
Awesome Scott, I hope that as well. Keep me posted on your journey.
Hey man! I’m so thrilled for you. Being back on the road feels great, huh? I will be following your journey and keep enjoying yourself. You’ve been waiting for it for a long long time.. :-D! Bon voyage!
Thanks Agness, I love being on the road again. Nothing like it in the world, and it was worth the wait 🙂
Beautifully written Stepehn! How very exciting to finally see you going. I am looking forward to your posts from Egypt. I am curious how the Arab Spring has changed the country as a tourist destination!
I meant to say Stephen of course! 😉
Ha no worries and thank you so much for the compliment. Post on Egypt coming very soon!!
Carry-on brother! Keep the posts coming……keep the enthusiasm…..keep the adventure baby. Missy & I love you!!
Thanks Brain. Sorry for the delay. Egypt doesn’t have the best wifi 🙂
You go follow your heart and you will not regret it. I wish well on your journey.
Thanks Walter! You never know until you try. I’m loving my journey so far, thanks for the wishes.
Congrats on the lift off, Scott! I can only imagine the anticipation that’s been running through those travel veins. My year-long journey doesn’t start for another 9 months, and I’m already antsy. I can’t wait to hear about your travels!
In connection with Arpan, I’d also like to know if you’ve had thoughts about the after-affects of travel? What then?
Thanks Scott. It is amazing to be on the road again. Keep saving and stay focused. As far as after affects after travel it always takes me time to readjust to being home. Traveling long term will be harder, but I’ll keep you informed.