An Open Letter to Those That Don’t Travel Often

An Open Letter to Those That Don’t Travel Often:

 

IMG_1648

First, let me take the opportunity to start by saying ‘Thank You.’ As an expat and obsessive traveler, I find the fact that you don’t travel long-term quite refreshing. It’s not that I want to keep the experience for myself, but rather I delight in the realization that we are really quite a pair.

You sit in your office at work or at home, and in-between tasks you look through my pictures and read about my latest discovery. Yes, you start to daydream about the places you would go if you had just 4 days of quiet away from these four walls. Most likely, you think to yourself, “Man, she’s lucky! Not to have to work 9-5.”

All that is very true. However, I also sit in my tiny space of living, in front of fans because the A/C is too expensive to run, and I look through your photographs. I browse through photos of the new car you just bought, the color choices you made for painting walls in your very first home, and the newest additions to the family, all experienced through the screen of a computer. I think, “Man, they seem so happy! They’ve really set up a family in a nice little part of the globe.”

DSC_0120

And at the end of the each day, we really do need the pair of us in the world today. You prove that settling down doesn’t necessarily mean sacrificing as long as you’re happy and I prove that no one should stop daring to achieve. Both realizations are vital to what provides us with the human experience. Somewhere, we find our own personal comfort level among that delicate scale. Maybe I’m not quite ready to settle down like you. In all honesty, I think I grow more restless with each passing day, but being able to share in those moments with you even if through the pixels of a screen, give me a glimpse into a new adventure. One that I might or might not take in the future. Either way, I am able to take a small part in it as if it were my very own.

In much the same way, you partake in my expeditions as well. You get to see the crowded streets of bustling Asian cities or take in the vibrant colors of rich spice markets around the globe. Through my photographs, you can experience the strained or smiling faces of the locals as if they were looking directly at you.

DSC_0563

Should you find yourself thinking that the grass is greener on the other side, just remember: You also don’t experience the stomach aches and night sweats from food not cooked properly nor do you wonder if you will be able to see loved ones for the holidays. Even so, I also don’t battle through the late nights of comforting a newborn or worry about paying for gas the next morning. But if either one of us should be asked why we continue onwards along the path that we’re going, we’d both answer the same: “Because we don’t know any other way.

So to those that I have left back at home who have made the decision to leave travel for those special family vacations, I thank you. You have given me a sense of where I have come from and the ability to understand what is awaiting me on the other end of a touchdown back at home. In my travels around the world and my adventure living abroad, I carry pieces and moments with you always. Should I ever be in need, I relish in the comfort of knowing that you are right back where I left you, in the familiar home-sweet-home and I love that we have both found what truly makes us happy.

Amsterdam, Netherlands, backpacksandblackboards.com
Amsterdam, Netherlands, backpacksandblackboards.com
Advertisements

16 thoughts on “An Open Letter to Those That Don’t Travel Often”

  1. Yes, yes, yes! I am an American expat living in Taiwan. I sometimes look at my friends’ photos and admire their American Dream just like I know they study my blog/photos and admire my vagabonding lifestyle. Both are sweet and both are beautiful and I think it’s so important to recognize that.

    1. Jacqueline, where in Taiwan are you living? I am in Taipei currently. I’m glad you stopped by since now I have access to your site as well. I definitely will be reading up on your Taiwan experience!

  2. Beautifully written, Christian! As I set out for my journey in moving abroad and traveling and leave my 9 to 5 job behind, I am not jealous or upset with those who want to stay there and continue the 9 to 5 lifestyle. I know that it is not for me, at least not now. Similarly, living abroad is not for everyone. We all need to do what makes us happy. Last year I passed on the opportunity to move to Spain and since that point living abroad is all I could think about, so I will making the jump and moving to Spain in September.

    As a past 9 to 5-er and a future expat, I have enjoyed and will continue to enjoy your blog. It’s great!

  3. Love this. I’m often torn between wanting to travel full-time and continuing my career back home, so I’ve tried to arrange it so I have 2 or 3 months of travel every year… longer term than most vacationers but not as long as the career nomads! Everyone has to find what works for them.

  4. Nice thoughts. Most people I know have the 9-5 lifestyle, and I find I am not jealous of them, but then again they aren’t jealous of me either. We are all happy in our own little worlds.

  5. I love this! Great perspective! I always wonder what life would be like if I used all the money I spend on traveling to develop a stable life somewhere…but at the end of the day, whatever fantasies I have never are strong enough to convince me to stay put lol.

Share your thoughts

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s