How it All Started: The Seed for Travel Adventure
As a child, I owned a set of old Childcraft books. I’m not really sure who gave me these books or where they came from but they were sort of a lifeline to the world around me. Growing up, my family was pretty poor and my father abusive. We didn’t have much, mostly due to my father being an alcoholic and drug abuser, and travel was pretty much out of the question for most my youth. Consequently, I spent a lot of time reading this set of Childcraft books and looking at all the photos and drawings that went along with the stories and facts. I remember reading about far off lands, both real and imaginary, and thinking how I wish I could just runaway to some of these places. I’m fairly certain these books planted the initial desire to travel in my little child head and the seed has only grown since.
The First Travel Adventure
There were two times in my youth when my family took trips and each time was to visit relatives. The first time I ever left my state was to visit my grandfather in Missouri. We drove from North Carolina to Missouri and I remember feeling as though we were driving through the scenes of some of the stories I read for so many years. There was a moment on the way when stopped in the Great Smokey Mountains. I remember standing at, what seemed to me at the time, a cliff at the edge of huge valley. Fog was rolling in through the peaks and I could see cows far below. It simply felt like a dream experience to me and I still remember it as a surreal moment in my life. Since that first experience, I’ve always wanted to go out into the world, meet new people, see new things, and just feel what the world has to offer. I guess, during that travel adventure, I realized there is so much to more to the world and I could escape into it…leaving behind my abusive father and becoming part of something so much bigger than myself.
Last Travel Adventure of My Youth
The second travel adventure of my youth took place during my freshman year of high school. My father finally received his residency for the US and decided it was time to go meet our relatives in Mexico for the first time. We drove from North Carolina to Monterrey, Mexico and the drive alone was quite an adventure. I remember feeling as though we passed through all these new worlds and trying to figure out how far was left until we left our country behind. When we finally arrived in Monterrey, I was blown away by pretty much everything. Originally my family planned to stay for only two weeks but ended up staying for a month. I, on the other hand, decided to stay for a year. That’s right…my family returned to the US and stayed behind with my relatives for the year. You can imagine the experiences, adventures, and trouble I got myself into as a young teenager in Mexico. This experience definitely solidified my love of travel and made me realize there was nothing to be afraid of…it’s just a different country.
Travel Adventure as an Adult
Once I left home to go to college, my mind was made. I would take every opportunity to travel anywhere. In college, I did not have much opportunity do international travel but I definitely traveled through the states quite extensively. A lot of my travel adventure in those days involved volunteering and organizing. I was quite bleeding heart and I really loved volunteering. I traveled to just about every state during college. But I wanted more.
Leaving college was great for the development of my mind into more of an adult and also for the hashing out of more travel adventure. I actually met Alfred right after leaving college and his love for a good travel adventure is just as great as my own. In fact, meeting each other probably brought us out of the woodwork when it comes to travel. It’s easier to be adventurous when you are with someone you trust and love. Not only that, he encouraged me to pursue travel writing when it finally came to a decision.
Why Travel Adventure is Important to Me?
Without a doubt, travel is important to me and is certainly a priority in my life. When it comes to choosing between spending money on instant gratification such as partying or a coffee and saving that money to put towards a new travel adventure, I always choose travel. The experiences I gain and the people I meet are the stuff that makes life so awesome. Granted, there is a lot to be said for home life and my consistent friends from home are an indispensable part of it all. But travel adventure adds spice to a life and make it even better. My quality of life is improved as a result of heading out on travel adventures and there is definitely a million experiences we just can’t get at home. I think travel adds to our development as people and as souls.
I believe wholeheartedly in the idea of taking advantage of opportunities when they present themselves. The problem with this is we must be able to recognize the opportunity. A travel adventure can be random like when your friend tells you they are going to DC for the weekend and suggest that you tag along. A travel adventure can also take time to plan for and take time to save for like when you decide you want to spend a week in Cuba so you stop going to your local coffee shop everyday to start saving for the trip. No matter what, we have to see the opportunity and take action in order to seize the moment…even if the moment is a ways away.
Travel Adventure is not Something You’ll Regret
Ultimately, travel is something that will only improve your life and your perspective of life as well as others. I’ve never met a single person who felt as though they regretted traveling. It can be a bit of an obstacle getting to the moment your plane finally takes off. You may need to sacrifice your daily coffee and eating at restaurants for a bit. But the payoff is totally worth it. You’ll have experiences under your belt which you’ll cherish. You’ll gain stories to tell your friends and you’ll hold onto those stories like the most valuable souvenirs. In the end, experiences and our stories are what create happiness. So when you choose a travel adventure, you choose a more fulfilling life and happiness. Looking back, one day when it’s all over, what would your rather see? I think the answer would involve incredible experiences and a fulfilling existence. Travel can and will give you those experiences…and you’ll never regret it.
Will you make travel a priority in your life?
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