Travelling is a beautiful hobby – one of the best (in my humble opinion)
But it has to be funded. So we work – we work to pay the bills, buy stuff, to save, and to holiday. The only difference is how we balance this.
I had a very privileged upbringing – I’m not naive to that. But I was also incredibly lucky to come from parents who always instilled this idea of travel in me. Growing up – I went on holiday every year. I didn’t get alot of pocket money, I didn’t get given gifts for doing well in exams – I got a pat on the back and a well done – At the time I took great umbrage to it- I thought it was unfair and that I should get the same Stuff as my peers.
But they didn’t go abroad.
I see that now I’m an adult. A beautiful thing to look back on and realise you were a privileged kid that couldn’t see the wood for the trees. Or the latest barbie doll.
My parents took me on my first plane ride when I was 18 months old and I’ve been an addict ever since.
I never spent outside of my pay bracket – I never used credit cards and I never took out a loan – for this I have my mother to thank – she instilled good finances in me and an understanding of the value of a pound. And then she left it up to me to decide what was worth spending that precious, hard earnt money on.
And in the long run, due to this – I grew up without debt – so when that day came, when I couldn’t stand the day to day anymore – when my inclination to travel took over my understanding that life was supposed to be Study, Career, Mortgage, Retire;
That day, I could buy the plane ticket. Because I had savings tucked away – I always saved, money went aside with every pay check whether I knew what it was going towards or not – Cause I simply knew that one day it would come in handy.
I worked so hard for that money. I worked 6 day weeks, 10 hour days, 2 jobs. You name it.
It can be so frustrating to hear people tell me I’m lucky.
I am lucky. I have a passport emblazoned with the coat of arms that include a lion and a unicorn – allowing me amazing freedom of movement throughout Mother Earth, something I took for granted before meeting so many people from so many different nationalities who simply are not allowed in countries – or have to pay huge visa fees, or are not allowed access to working rights in countries. I was born in a country that allows me these opportunities.
But most of all.
I am lucky because I have the most supportive family in the world. Parents who save their holiday money to visit me while I’m gallivanting in Peru. Parents who always make me know I’m loved – no matter how many miles away I am. Parents who never make me feel bad for wanting to be unconventional and not follow the path well trodden.
But I’m not lucky because I made sacrifices – because I chose to save my money every month or because I worked stupid hours in underpaid jobs.
So here I am – sitting in an office in Sydney – finding ways to earn money so that I can once again start squirreling money to one side and see another part of the globe. Because I’m not done yet!
I was talking to a friend I met in Costa Rica the other day. He’s finally going home – 9 years on the road, 9 years living in various countries, cruise ships, running hostels. And after 9 years he’s got that excitement – that buzz to go home. Kinda like my buzz to travel.
I’m waiting for that. I’m looking forward to it even. But I don’t want to go back beforehand. I don’t want to resent my quirky, flawed, beautiful little country by going home too soon.
My mum would kill me if it took 8 more years…