I have always been a gal on the move. Whatever that means. Simply sitting idle has never really intrigued me. I can’t stand it. Even in my younger days as a kid in Indiana, I was moving. This means exactly what it sounds like. The longest time spent in a house as a girl was probably three years. To some, this may sound chaotic. But it engrained a belief into my brain that I still cling to today. Sitting still sucks.
A lack of longitude
Until October of 2012, I had never flown on a plane. While some friends Instagram toddler aged passport photos on Thursdays (#tbt, don’t worry you’re not missing anything if this is a new concept to you), I could never relate. I do not come from a lineage of travelers. This is not a good or bad thing. It’s just an observation. My family never took vacations to Belize and the only large body of water I dipped my toes in happened to be the Gulf of Mexico. I only remember it being very murky and sting rays were abundant. Twas not a grand experience.
My first flight in October confirmed what I always knew to be true. Traveling is amazing. I know some of you may be forced to travel for work and find it a huge burden. There are times when sitting next to a sneezing elderly woman is downright unbearable. There are times when your flight is canceled in Detroit so you order a large pizza and consume it in your hotel room. But then there are those moments, and almost novel-esque happenings that once again confirm what you always knew to be true. Those who are in a position to travel and see the world are some of the luckiest people. While I do not believe in luck, it is a good adjective to use sometimes. With each mile I travel, I am eternally thankful for the opportunity. I’m no martyr but I remember exactly where I was six months ago. I used to daze out my university classroom window just longing to be in the air. I wanted to go. I needed to go. Now, when I look down out of my window seat (this is no accident); I remember.
Moments of WTF
Within the past six months, I have traveled to places I never dreamed I would see. My most monumental trip thus far involves South America. I can only take a few moments reminiscing photos from Rio de Janeiro until I become sad. I remember every conversation, every sip of Cachaça, and the massive feelings of happiness I felt while there. A few friends and family have wondered why I am still so deeply missing that gorgeous mass of land. For me, Brazil was a wonderful experience that was very much work related. As many of you know, I love my work. However, the trip was much more than required travel. I flew there being very aware of my lack of traveling.
I can only hope to remain appreciative of traveling. In 2013, miles are a trivial thing. Long distance relationships no longer seem crazy, flights become more efficient everyday, and the time it takes to completely change your cultural disposition is frightening. With each city I visit, I try to soak in every minute. Not every trip is a big trip, but it’s a trip I never saw myself taking. Statistically, I shouldn’t be where I am today. Without heading in a negative direction, I truly realize the amazing opportunities I currently have but I also realize where I could have ended up.
The chance to travel has knocked me off my feet. Once you take that first leap into the air, the world is just waiting for you. I will spend my days and most of my money traveling. To see foreign lands is something you cannot replicate. I could read National Geographic everyday and never really experience the world. All of this sudden travel has infected every molecule in my body. It is addictive and the mere thought of stepping off a plane in another country creates an obnoxious smile on my face. It is no longer something I can control. Perhaps my enthusiasm for crossing borders is childlike. If that’s true, then so be it. I refuse to dial down any bits of excitement I encounter while in transit. It’s a beautiful world and I’m happy to see it.