… and how I planned a round the world trip in my lunchbreak!
I think if you are a relatively creative or adventurous person, it’s pretty natural to want to travel because there is so much beauty out there – and once you’ve experienced some of it first hand, why would you not want to just keep on seeing more?
I didn’t do the whole university + gap year thing… I went straight into full-time work from the age of 18, working my way up to a fairly successful position in a media environment which was great fun… but after several years of 9 to 5 (more like 8 to 8), I felt increasingly exhausted and unfulfilled.
It turned out the career success I’d been so driven to achieve was good for my bank account but not so great for my soul…
When I met my husband I had only been on package holidays to European countries, whereas he had been to places like Peru, Iran and Turkmenistan – so we decided to go to Thailand for 3 weeks, travelling round independently….and basically that was it, I fell in love with travel and my experiences from a relatively short trip to Asia gave me that appetite for the freedom of exploring, the desire and the lust for new, exotic places that are so different from the UK.
After visiting Thailand we had a couple of long-haul holidays (I was pretty much working to fund our travel) and my lust for adventure just kept increasing, the highlights of our trips often being seeing different animals.
One lunchtime, having just returned from a brief holiday I was feeling jet lagged – not only from the flight home, but my career too. Sitting daydreaming at my desk, I decided our next trip should be Malaysian Borneo to see Orangutans – something I had dreamt of for years.
But when you look on the map and see where Borneo is, and how many other wonderful countries are so close by, I suppose it’s easy to see how the idea of buying a round the world ticket and having a big adventure may happen?!
I was lucky to be working for the BBC at the time, who allow such things as ‘career breaks’, so on the spur of the moment I walked into my boss’s office, sat down and asked if it would be possible to take an extended career break to travel. He amazed me by saying yes and a call to our mortgage company to arrange some additional borrowing for cough, cough ‘home improvements?!’ ….. and that was it…. a big change in my life was about to begin…..
Ultimately, travel pretty much changed my view on everything… it has influenced my subsequent career choices, the decor of my home, my hobbies – travel is the ultimate ‘muse’ for a keen photographer – along with my general outlook on life and what can be accomplished.
I’m going to share some of my experiences from our trips in the coming weeks, and those of some fellow bloggers too, but for now I will end by saying. if you’ve got that need within you to escape, to explore, to grow and experience new cultures – all cliches I know, but they are said for a very valid reason – do whatever you can to make it happen, to head off and see more of this beautiful world!