I’ve argued a lot, in public and in private, that this big trip of mine is more than just a lot of fun. It’s life. It’s work. It’s an adventure yes, but not just trekking and drinking, but an adventure of the mind. Traveling requires creativity and hard work, a lot of patience and a hell of a lot of resolve.
But you know what? It’s also a lot of fun. It’s a lot of drinking, a lot of socializing. A lot of sitting on beaches, of surfing the internet, of reading for pleasure. Of sex. A lot of quick friends and days of doing nothing but laying in a hammock. Late nights of dancing, drinking, breaking societal norms and ignoring local cultural traditions. Traveling, no doubt about it, is a hedonistic affair.
That’s certainly not bad. Everyone’s allowed to indulge once in a while. And while I do, I try to remember that there’s a reason I’m here. It was a lot of hard work–years of saving, setting goals, rationing and planning.
Listen, I still believe that traveling is hard, and that what I’m doing is the greatest thing I could’ve done with my life. It has irrevocably changed my life for the better. My quality of life has improved and there’s no doubt in my mind that traveling will improve my chances for success later in life as well. The things I’ve learned abroad have made every day easier, every day different. And there’s no doubt that it has changed what my future is going to look like. Whether tomorrow, 6 months, 1 year, 5…10 years from today.
And yet I can’t help but feel tinges of guilt. Maybe sitting on the beach for days on end, writing all these thoughts in my Moleskine isn’t so healthy after all. It just brings up more questions than answers.