Saturday, July 16, 2011

Long term travel?

Last Sunday was a day off. I accomplished virtually nothing. I had a headache most of the day that just won't go away. It's not a really bad one, just enough so that I was always noticing it and always not feeling good.

I did a lot of lying around and listening to the Anthony Bourdain marathon on TV. I hadn't seen any of the shows  because I don't get the cable TV in Salt Lake.

You may have noticed how I have a whole pile of travel blogs that I subscribe to (see the list at the right). I read these and others that are linked to these. My favorite kind of book to read is a travel narrative. I like to read about other people's traveling, and I like to think about my own traveling.

Maybe it was always so, but what with the big, big world of blogging, it seems like every 4th person is now doing long term traveling. I do notice that many of the travel bloggers tell us that they began with being dissatisfied and unhappy working in the corporate world. Many are single, but there certainly are couples and families in the mix. I get the impression that most are middle class and are generally well educated. Most are white. Most are younger than I am by decades.

I am fascinated with the idea of long term travel, but the question I keep asking is, do I really want to do that? I think that obviously if I am still uncertain about the answer to that question, then the answer right now is "no."

Here are some things I do know. I don't want to just travel around constantly, trying to see or do everything that must be done or seen in a given place. I don't want to be constantly on the move. I also don't care about visiting every place there is to visit. I don't really want to be very uncomfortable or in danger with any regularity. I want the ability to have days like Sunday when I need them, days where I just stay put in my room and do nothing much. I don't want to feel guilty about that; if I need a day "in", I need a day "in" and it's not something that I "wasted".

I do want to learn about other people and places. I would like to go someplace and then find an apartment or something so I could just live there awhile and get to know what it's like to live there, not just visit.

I don't want to give up my summer place. If I were to hit the road, I would get rid of the city apartment and do something about all the things there, but I would simply shut and lock the door here in the condo and then continue to pay the mortgage and electric bill.

It looks like most of the travelers who blog did have a fairly long period  of planning before they hit the road. I think most planned for at least a year. It doesn't look like most people just woke up one day, said "I quit" and then left by the end of the week. That's comforting. I'm a major planner. I can take my time to really think about this.

At this stage of my life, it would probably be best just to wait things out and get to retirement age. Then I would have health insurance and an income and could feel more secure about going some place for the sake of going some place. I just need to be patient.

I'm going to get New Kitty in a little while. That will keep me at home for several years. So for the moment, I'll continue to just read and think about long term travel. Maybe I will do that someday. But not now. And that's just fine. I'm not running away from anything. I'm actually quite contented with how my life is going these days. I'll stick around in it for awhile longer.


  1. you're always welcome to stay at our house in southern Germany. it's an easy 10 min walk to town, where you can read a book or drink coffee and eat cake. you can go to the public swimming pool/spa and relax. you can sit and watch the birds on the lake, or walk around the lake if you want. you can take the train to Munich which is about 45 min away. it's a very enjoyable place.

  2. That's the kind of thing I know I would prefer to do ... find a place and stay awhile. Shop at the grocery store, go for a walk in town and talk to people, hang out and just get to know a place. It won't matter that I only stay in one place ... miss a lot of other parts of Germany for example. I'd rather go for depth not breadth.