What Next? Life After Long Term Travel

What Next? Life After Long Term Travel

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Preparing to return home after three years on the road is a foreign process for me, reflecting on the places we’ve  been and what our next plans are I came across a journal entry from Brazil.  With so little information about life after long term travel, I thought I would share it as it sums up some of the mixed emotions I have about going home.

As I lay in a hammock enjoying a cup of tea and the sun poaring in through the window, which gives me a perfect view of the Brazilian town of Ouro Preto. I was suddenly struck by the idea that these days are numbered.  The days that have marked my past two and a half years.  The ones that start with no plans and end back in a hammock.  It’s hard to think about ending this hedonistic journey of self-fulfillment and returning to what I have dubbed the “real-world” as if I have been living in some kind of alternative reality.  But, the truth is I have been.

There are few times in our life where we can live only for ourselves.  While many people would argue that’s all you can do, citing the monicer that “you can’t please everyone so you mine as well at least make yourself happy”.  However, after over two years of doing just that I am starting to wonder how healthy that really is.  Yesterday as I was fretting over whether we would be able to go to Antarctica or not because we had decided to head to Brazil first to experience Carnival in Rio, I realized just how ridiculous the whole scenario was.  I have been chasing my dreams for two years and the thing is, everyone one of my dreams has come true.  This has been my reality.

How will the transition from my lunches looking like this, to having business lunches?

So, in returning to the “real world” I am trying to temper my current reality with the pressures and actualities of a life that does not consist of simply lounging all day in a hammock if I so choose.  But rather demands that I start thinking about my future, past what I will have for dinner, but more in the terms of how I want to give back, make a difference and make a living.  These are difficult ideas to get my head around and I know that the transition will be harder than simply writing a blog post about it.

Life after long term travel is not an oft written about phenomenon.  There are plenty of sites and blogs dedicated to how to quit your job and travel as well as an entire genre of inspirational quotes to encourage you to follow your dreams.  But what do you do after you have achieved your dream, how do you transition to your next dream and make it a reality, and then turn it into a life?

As much as I thought I had become accustomed to change as the only constant, this change scares me.  I don’t know what to think about it or how to tackle this next phase.

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Comments

» Graham :
Jun 28, 2013

Your RTW trip will surely give you great insight going forward. The toughest part (for me) was giving up that sense of freedom! But stability is pretty swell too :)

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Nov 19, 2014

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About the Author

LOCAVORista: A curious adventurer exploring the culinary delights and local traditions around the world. Currently on a 3 year round-the-world trip discovering amazing cultures, must-eats and off-the-beaten-track destinations.

About the Author
LOCAVORista: A curious adventurer exploring the culinary delights and local traditions around the world. Currently on a 3 year round-the-world trip discovering amazing cultures, must-eats and off-the-beaten-track destinations.
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