Trapped by Culture

I tend to avoid anything with a political undertone, but this is article is a rant for new friends I have made.

In England and as a man I can be very selfish and to the most part with the right admin have the freedom do anything I want and I am defined mostly by my actions. In conclusion I am f***ing lucky.

Queue some friends I have met. Ms K which this rant is mainly about is smart, funny mutli-lingual, well travelled and extremely resourceful. Unfortunately her visa ran out and had to return to China. I keep in regular contact with her and feel for her. Now she isn’t defined by herself but her relationship status as single, from her home life to even job interviews. She has felt pressured to meet suitors who don’t see a lively smart Woman but someone who isn’t quiet and reserved.

Mr S is a pretty slick young man who was travelling around Oceania, he has an amazing youthful enthusiasm about him. Unfortunately he had to stop his adventure to serve mandatory military service. Despite the country he lives in not being involved in a war for a century.

The point of this slightly off key article is to really appreciate the freedoms you have. Rant over.


 

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People you meet travelling part 2

This is a series of articles exploring the people I meet travelling and the lessons I have learnt.

Ms China- She had left China to work in New Zealand. She stayed for two years and explored everywhere in New Zealand. She would work a little, quit, travel and repeat. She made me consider an important question do I ever want/need to settle in one place? One I will think on for the next 9 months.

Ms Australia– She was a senior lawyer in Australia and had no work life balance. She quit her job to travel around Fiji and the Cook Islands. I mention this lady because although we got on she is a mirror of some aspects of my personality-argumentative, competitive and an obsession with being right. She has helped me to realise being right or winning the argument for the sake for winning is pointless.

Mr and Mrs Canada– They had a six and a one year old child. They decided to buy a camper van travelling from Canada, to USA, Mexico, and work their way down to South America. This couple was especially inspiring as I am living my life with minimum emotional bagguage for fear of being tied down. However this couple had the obligations but were still having their an adventure.

Who do you meet when traveling?

I wondered when I started this solo traveling adventure who will I meet and what lessons could I learn? This series of articles will be a spot light on those people.

Mr. Young Germany–  I traveled with this young man a few days, he had graduated school a year early, decided to defer university to travel. Unlike a lot of people his age he decided not to do it as part of a tour and go solo. He helped my realise I don’t have to be so tough on myself-be kind to yourself.

Mr. England– Worked in insurance and this was his third time taking a year to travel. I met him in Honolulu and he has a serious girlfriend who he lived with in Japan for 3 years. He helped my realise with the right partner you don’t have to feel trapped.

Ms. Germany– She had a similar story to myself- fell into a career, saved hard for a home and was working her way up the career ladder. Then like myself felt incredibly trapped by life, decided to make a dramatic change and find herself by traveling . Unlike me she still wanted some structure so has been doing causal Nanny work in the places she visits. She helped me reconfirm that I don’t need to always do what society expects of me.

Sliding doors-a changing life

My App (STA travel app) tells me its 32 days till the world I have created is fully deconstructed and I start my new adventure, first stop New Zealand.

Sliding doors

For those who dont know the reference of my blog title today, its a film where you see two branches of someone’s life after an important event/decision is made.

The reason I reference the film is I went to see a house with a good friend today who is about 6 months behind me and asking the same questions- can I afford it? why am I buying? do I want to live here? what do I compromise on? etc. The difference between us is she is excited and energised by the experience and therefore taking that branch of her life.

The point you ask! Is no matter what direction you are taking make sure its the one for you because life is to short. And remember its never too late to make a crazy decision and take a different branch like me.

As always I will leave you with a quote I enjoyed.

“Her vision of the world under the water represented a beautiful stillness, a version of heaven. It was the lost city of Lena, her alternate universe, the life she yearned for but didn’t get to have.”  ― Ann Brashares

A little fear…

On Sunday I booked just over five months of flights (for those interested New Zealand, Hawaii, Fiji, Mexico, USA, Canada and back to London) and for the first time in this journey I felt a little bit of fear!!!

Why?

Since the start of this chapter of my life I quit my job, handed notice on my flat, gave the majority of my possessions to charity and told my Family of my decision. The only feelings so far has been excitement and relief. So why the fear now? I believe on reflection it’s because so far it’s about letting go of a life that didn’t work anymore, but travelling is embracing the new and it can be scary.

The point of today’s blog is fear is just another emotion we should embrace and helps us reflect on a situation. For me it helped reconfirm its ok not be certain of a new direction, but that shouldn’t stop us embracing the feeling.

A first lady has a good quote on the subject “Do one thing every day that scares you”- Eleanor Roosevelt

 

Changes that come with travel

How Does Travel Change You? My parents think I am crazy for wanting to just leave everything and travel the world. It is just not something they can comprehend. As I wrote about in my first post, I just have this incredible wanderlust. They don’t understand. They think I am irresponsible. I cannot […]

via Does Travel Make You A Better Person? I Think It Does — Change The Code

Calling New Zealanders

I have made a final decision. The first stage of my adventure will be lovely New Zealand.

The Plan (please note I am only doing the northern island on this visit-queue shock! GASP!).

Starting in Auckland, up to the Bay of Islands, down to Hamiliton, east to Hahei then Rotorua. Followed by Mt Mauganui, Whaktane, Gisbourne and then Napier. Inwards to Taupo and down to Wellington. Then up to New Plymouth and Waitomo Caves, with a final stop at Raglan.

Any areas I have missed? would love to hear your experiences. I will leave you all with a Maori proverb that made a lot of sense to me.

“Seek the treasure you value most dearly: if you bow your head, let it be to a lofty mountain”

 

London…relearning the love part 2

In an earlier post I spoke about relearning my love of London. As I discussed I discovered a great app called Walkster that has suggested walking tours. Today’s tour Belgrave Mews.

So armed with my coat, hat, gloves and contactless card of to Sloane Square I went. What did I discover? my love of architecture. In a very small area there are stunningly different styles of buildings from art deco churches to converted mews. A must walk for those visiting London. For those picture lovers see a few here https://www.instagram.com/quittingmylife/

In other exciting news I got a great credit card for traveling called the Halifax clarity.  For those planning a long trip abroad a must have. As always I will leave you with a quote that struck a chord:

“The longer I live, the more beautiful life becomes. If you foolishly ignore beauty, you will soon find yourself without it. Your life will be impoverished. But if you invest in beauty, it will remain with you all the days of your life.” -Frank Wright

Pack that backpack

This summer, my boyfriend and I decided to embark on a crazy, travel adventure! We decided on Europe as our destination, where the goal was to see and experience as much as we possibly could over the months while we were there. We had both been to Europe before, so we knew of the many narrow, cobblestone roads […]

via How To Pack For Backpacking — Indulge Without Bulge

Backpacks…who knew

So as my journey continues I am leaning towards travel to help refind myself. Regardless of what path I ulimately choose I have set myself the target to reduce my possessions to one backpack, yes one!

So my good friend and I went to find that one backpack that would become my life. I now have a new found respect for backpackers. You need to think about the size, the curvature of your back, hip support, rain protection, side compartments, areas for damp clothes etc. Despite all of these considerations I had great fun learning and hopefully found the one backpack for my next journey.

I will leave you all with a quote

” There are a lot of stories out there, waiting for you to live them.”