Do you ever feel like you’re stuck in a rut? I know I do. Sometimes, the routine of doing the same things day after day, driving to the same places, sitting at the same desk, eating at the same restaurants, and going out to the same places starts to get to me. It’s almost like a case of cabin fever, except the cabin isn’t just my home but the entire city. I get to a point where I need to get out and explore. I need to do something, anything, that’s out of my routine. It starts to ache I yearn for it so badly.
That’s when I know it’s time for me to travel again.
Of course, if I had my way I would do nothing but travel. I would be on the road 24/7 and my home would be wherever I had found a bed for the night. That’s simply not reality, though. Life finds a way of getting in the way of my becoming a full-time travel hobo.
Obviously, I need to work and make money so I can do things like eat and clothe myself. I need health insurance, because I’m not getting any younger. My husband, who I love more than anything, loves travel, but unlike me he doesn’t like the idea of becoming a broke travel hobo. Damn that stability!
I sometimes look at my life and I just want to book a flight somewhere, anywhere, and be free, but then that voice of responsibility comes back and reminds me that I have to at least attempt some semblance of adulthood.
I have big plans for the future. I’m going to be a digital nomad. I’m going to live abroad. I’m going to teach English in Thailand. I’m going to work for the U.S. Antarctic program. I’m going to buy a camper van and hit the open road. I’m going to take seasonal jobs in various national parks. I’m going to do so many things. Just not…yet. After all, I’ve got to save up an emergency fund. I’ve got to save for my retirement. I need health insurance. I don’t want to be away from my husband all the time.
Back and forth. Back and forth I go. Should I become a travel hobo? Should I settle down and buy a house? Back and forth. Back and forth. Such is the dilemma of the responsibly minded person who also has a hopeless case of wanderlust.
All I can really do is continue to craft a life that allows me to travel as much as possible, to take every opportunity to hit the open road, and to remind myself that my life is actually pretty good. Eventually these feelings pass and I look around, see the beautiful San Diego palm trees and sparkling Pacific Ocean, and I realize that yes, I am happy here.
I am happy here, but that doesn’t mean I don’t need to get out, too. Sadly, my life will always be a tug of war between building a life for myself and my need to run free. That’s the story of my life.
That’s why when I realize I’m stuck in a rut, I book a trip. I book a big trip to another country, a medium sized trip to see a friend in another state, or a small trip at an Airbnb I can drive to for the weekend. But I always book a trip.
Any of you ever feel this way?