Sunday, September 30, 2012

Pre-departure turbulence

After dreaming for two years and saving up for one, planning for months and preparing for weeks, the trip I've been anticipating for so long is a mere three days away. I've renewed my passport, gotten my immunizations, called my credit card company and booked a place to stay. Although I'm feeling pretty well prepared, it hasn't been all smooth sailing. I have most definitely encountered some "turbulence" leading up to this trip which, just like when you ride in an airplane, can make you reconsider your decision altogether.

Contrary to what some travel blogs might say, I don't think it's easy to decide to leave home and travel for an extended period of time. You need to have an idea of where you want to go. You need at least enough money to get there and back. You may need to get vaccinated (ouch), or buy lots of Pepto Bismol to prevent traveler's diarrhea (yuck). You need to be okay with leaving family, friends and other commitments behind. All in all, to me it seems like a pretty big decision to make and at times it can all feel kind of overwhelming.

But the other day I came across a quote that reminded me why all of this stuff doesn't matter:

"Always try to follow the road that makes your heart feel good."

While I've had some doubts about the trip, the bottom line is that traveling makes me feel alive and inspired. At the risk of sounding a bit cheesy, it makes my heart feel good, and that is why I'm going. Because after the airplane ride is over, you forget all about the turbulence that had you so scared. You forget because you've arrived somewhere new, and you're so glad you're there. 

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