Do you know how some people always seem to manifest money, relationships or even drama? Well I can do that with travel.
I’m that person that goes from having no plans to going to New Zealand in two months because I found a $244 R/T direct flight from LAX (true story) or better yet, finds a cheap last-minute flight that leaves to NYC that afternoon and decides to ask for some last minute PTO to spend the birthday the next day there.
Well shoot, you’ll say, that just means you have disposable income and a pretty sweet boss. And while I’ve been lucky to have both, I’d like to think its more than that. Travel is my non-negotiable. I can’t always pin whats going to happen for me in a year but I can assure you that I will be going on a trip, visiting someone or somewhere. Travel is one New Years Eve resolution I don’t have to make.
In fact, I’ve traveled for as long as I can remember.
When I was young, it was mostly in my imagination through the books I read, the stories I wrote and the games my younger brother and I would make up to keep ourselves entertained. On the many occasions my dad would travel for business, I would travel there in my head as I pleaded for him to take me along. And because he couldn’t stop traveling, we moved to Miami just so he could be that much closer to his connecting airport.
I think my mom could see this love for travel from a young age. She warned my dad while we were still living in Miami that it would be wise to move back to Mexico to lay down some roots. Heaven forbid I fall in love with a foreigner (95% of Miami’s population) and fly off to Latin America on a whim. Little did she know that there’d be no stopping that – the flying off somewhere, I mean.
As I’ve grown older, traveling has become my constant. I moved to London while I was in college and since then have not stopped. I’m lucky enough to work for an organization that has me on 3-4 extended international trips a year. (See, I told you I was good at making travel a thing).
Why do I travel? Simple, Wanderlust.
I’m not talking about the #wanderlust millennial fairytale of quitting your job to travel full-time, although power to you if you’ve done it or still do it.
I mean, I like wandering…
I crave it. I love strolling aimlessly through a new place. I simply love how present we become when we travel somewhere new. You see, I fall in love with cities and countries the way people fall in love with each other at 19. Full of excitement, curiosity and wonder. Where you can’t and don’t want to think of anything else but what’s right there in front of you. Where you’re mesmerized by the person in front of you. Except its not a person, its a whole city of strangers that I’m watching from a café.
Perhaps, I love to travel because I love stories. Those I learn about a new place before I even arrive, and those that I capture in the people I meet and the stories they share.
It’s possible that I’m still that book-worm kid collecting stories. I just traded my bike ride to the library for an uber to the airport.