He Said/She Said FAQ: Will Going Home Be Hard?

He Said/She Said FAQ: Will Going Home Be Hard?

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Answering the questions we’re most often asked, every three weeks we’ll answer a FAQ to share what people want to know when they find out we’ve been traveling for over two years…

LAST MONTH’S QUESTION: What was your scariest travel moment?
NEXT MONTH’S QUESTION (on June 26): What’s the strangest thing you’ve eaten?

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WILL IT BE HARD TO GO HOME?

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HE SAID…

Will it be hard to go home?  No.  What more do you want me to say?  Will it be hard to not look for a new home every few days?  Will it be hard to not have to forage for food for every single meal?  Will it be hard to use hot water to shave?  Will it be hard to not have any overnight buses in my future?  Will it be hard to not have to lock my things every time I leave my room?  Will it be hard to wear different clothes than I’ve had for the last three years?  NO.  This is a transition that I think I can handle.

Will going home be an adjustment?  Of course.  It’s not going to be easy.  Our friend’s lives have drastically changed, I’m not sure how, or if, we’ll fit into people’s lives.  I’m not sure what we’re going to do.  I’m certainly not ready to start working.  It’s going to be strange living with my parents.  I’ll probably burn myself a few times using a proper stove for the first time.  I’m sure I’ll gain some “re-entry” weight when I gorge myself on Chipotle and whatever it is I find in the fridge. Adjustments there will be, but hard it will not be.

If we were going home after a year it would be tougher.  The reality is that I’ve seen and done most of the things I wanted.  Is there more I want to see?  Of course, but in the months and years we’ve traveled, spending an average of four days in a place, we’ve done a lot.  We spent no longer than 10 days in any one place, we’ve been seeing, doing, and moving constantly.  A break from this will be more than nice, it’s needed.

Looking back I’m surprised and impressed with all we’ve done, we did so much more than I could have ever imagined.  When we first started talking about going home it was scary.  After accepting the idea I started to realize the good it will bring.  Going home isn’t an end, rather it will give us a time to rest and reflect. I’m looking forward to being home, the good and bad it may bring.

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SHE SAID…

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This is probably my favorite frequently asked question because I know that the asker is genuinely interested in our thoughts on “re-entry”, but it’s like asking do you like traveling when we’ve been at it for over two years.  Of course it will be hard to go “home”, to see friends we haven’t seen in nearly three years, to assimilate back into life in the U.S. and to try and stay in one place for more than a week at a time. It will be nearly impossible to resist the urge to see and do new things since that is what I have filled every day with for the last two and a half years.

Admittedly I am excited to go home for the first time in nearly three years, but I know that it is not the same place I left a few years ago, nor am I the same person. I’m not returning to a life of familiarity, I won’t be living in the same apartment nor will my friends be in the same place they were when we took off.  We have friends that have married people we’ve never met,  had kids, changed jobs and made countless other transformations that we haven’t been a part of.  We won’t have any shared experiences within the last three years to reflect on and neither us nor them will be the same people we were when this adventure started.

Not returning to the familiar isn’t the only hurdle going home brings, after all, we experience the unfamiliar everyday on the road.  However, getting back into a routine and establishing a new normal will be tough.  We will have to face the questions fellow travelers have been asking us for years that we have simply shrugged off.  What do you want to do when you get home?  How will you assimilate back into real life?  Are you going to get a job?  My only response right now is, it’s going to be hard…

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Comments

» Mom A :
Jun 6, 2013

We can try out all the things that are new here in the last few years to try to help satisfy that urge! They all just won’t be so far away.
I’ll have fun with that and so will friends! We have always loved that about you!

LOCAVORista Reply:

Mom, I definitely have a list of new to me restaurants I want to check out and not having been in MN for years I’m sure there will be new things to explore other than restaurants too!

» Graham :
Jun 6, 2013

For me, going back to work was the hardest thing. Its crazy that people willingly sit around in one place for 8 hours a day! :)

LOCAVORista Reply:

Graham, I can’t imagine heading right back into the work place we have plans to apply for graduate school before getting back into the cubicle life.

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{ Jun 24, 2013 - 04:06:02 } Living If | Life after Long Term Travel

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About the Author

thinkCHUA: Photographing and documenting the world on a 3 year round-the-world trip to help future travelers discover new places, travel longer and enjoy the world's great experiences.

About the Author
thinkCHUA: Photographing and documenting the world on a 3 year round-the-world trip to help future travelers discover new places, travel longer and enjoy the world's great experiences.
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