During a skype session with one of my bestest gal pals we began the whole debate on ‘Where we are at’. Both 24. Both single, aspiring girls with good degrees from good Universities. – Since graduating last year she is an aspiring, freelance illustrator. – Since graduating 3 years ago, I have had 7 different jobs and travelled in more than 18 different countries.

The meaning of Travel

Trav•el
to go from one place to another, as by car, train, plane, or ship; take a trip; journey: to travel for pleasure. to move or go from one place or point to another. To journey, to proceed or advance in any way
To travel: A verb: A doing word.

We travel from home to work, from the bedroom to the kitchen, from one side of the bed to the other. We travel by foot, by car, by plane. Travelling is constant. It is built into our daily lives as we traverse from one place to another.

Yet when we use the word ‘travelling’, it feels exciting, adventurous and exotic.

People say life is a journey. They are not wrong but it is us that defines the depth and meaning of that journey.
I have now left home many times, on grand adventures, hoping to discover what makes me, me. Test my minerals and challenge myself. However, I always return home. Back to the golden bay, the local pubs and the comforts of close friendships. My Mam has always told me that she wanted to give me wings, allow me to discover the world how I wished. It’s the invisible roots that over the years I have subconsciously planted so profoundly that keep me coming back.

Independence tells me to adventure into the unknown. Take risks. Discover.

I live by the motto “We only live once”, I’m a very liberal person and the phrase can’t be easily argued. At 24, I believed I would be in a budding career. Climbing the ladder of success and running the rat race. Instead I find myself here, on a small, tropical island called Reunion. Unheard of by many, it is a beautiful, French island between Madagascar and Mauritius. I work here as a Nanny. Random. I have no child care qualifications, purely a maternal nature and lots of smaller friends. Hired.

I haven’t done the STA Travel ‘gap y’ar’ world package deal. I’ve journeyed sporadically. When I have that sparkle inside of me. Sometimes it takes a long, coastal run, sometimes a big sip of my large glass of Gallo, sometimes a mere blink.

A journey is a story we edit ourselves. We meet new people, we explore new cultures, and we dip our toes in their shoes for a week, a day, a moment. Have you ever thought, I wonder what it’s like?
The ‘travel bug’ is now a pandemic. My thoughts are that Facebook and the like has helped this travel trend. People are able to visually explore the experiences and adventures of their friends. It takes away the mysterious worries that are so associated with the unknown. The truth of the matter is how do we know something actually exists unless we see it ourselves?

People diagnose me with the travel bug. I disagree. I had this coming to me. It was injected into me through my childhood. My father’s stories of adventure from his Merchant Navy days. My mother’s support. I am lucky, I have had opportunities arise in front of me my entire life, sometimes I literally trip over them and sometimes I think I may just be an overt opportunist. Either way I’m grateful. The trick I believe is not to be scared of life. When your time is up it’s up, there’s nothing you can do about it. That’s not meant to be a negative concept, quite the opposite in fact. Why be scared of opportunities when the mere word itself conveys a positive impact. Que sera sera.

There are so many excuses to remain stationary, to cement oneself into the foundations of a comfortable home and lifestyle. Don’t think I haven’t thought about it. I travel to escape, right? Exploration is my type of freedom. You can’t explain it or bottle it up and sell it. It is a feeling. Often quite overwhelming.

The world is a big, beautiful place. But how would you know that if you haven’t played witness to its magnificance. Who knows what a place looks like unless you’ve seen it yourself. How do you actually know it exists? Did you see it on a postcard? On the television? So what? Do you believe everything your filtered?

Why not see it with your own eyes, take your own pictures and tell your own stories.

To travel: to proceed and advance in anyway.


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