Gosh, where to start?
First thing to talk about is where I’ve been since the 7th of October, which was when I last posted. The answer is nowhere physically, but mentally, I have been a million and one miles away.
In my previous post, I said how I was still having sleepless nights about a really quite… no… for me what is a MASSIVE decision in my life. I was having sleepless nights over a decision about whether to go travelling through South America.
But it wasn’t just about that.
It was about giving up my cosy work situation, and risking not getting it back again.
It was about spending a LOT of money on another major solo adventure, when I know full well I’m not the best solo traveller.
It was about leaving my comfort zone at a time when I’ve never been more afraid of doing so.
It was about leaving a comfortable, if not perfect, living situation in terms of cost of rent, housemates, location, etc.
What would I come back to?
Can I earn enough money?
How long can I go for?
Is this just fanciful nonsense?
So, while all these things were swirling around my mind, day and night, night and day. Every day, I forgot this blog even existed. I was so consumed by this decision.
It was really impacting my life in a big way. I couldn’t concentrate on anything nor sleep at night.
Get ready for an analogy I love (and have quite possibly shared with you before elsewhere on this blog).
There are so many aspects of my life where I have rolled the dice and I’ve gotten a three. Now, in many ways, there’s nothing wrong with a three. A three’s not bad. It’s not that great but it’s certainly not a disaster.
Sometimes though, you want more than a three. You can accept a three for a while and understand that under certain circumstance you can have every reason to be happy with a three.
I can’t shake this feeling deep down that I want to pick the dice up again, give them a shake, and roll.
So, I’m doing it. I’m going. These aren’t just empty words either. I have booked my flights. It’s confirmed. I’m going in March and returning in July.
I can’t describe the adrenaline rush when I proceeded through each step of the flight booking process. At the part where I input my card details, it all became very real. But the moment when I actually had to click “confirm”? That was terrifying.
But, Jesus Christ, it made me feel alive. Not only that. I felt happy. Proud almost. I did something. Something big. Something not many other people do. Literally and metaphorically.
Because it’s not just about going backpacking. It’s about what going backpacking represents. It represents me saying, you know, what this scares me more than any of my other trips by a long way, and I may not know what I’m getting myself into, but I’m doing it anyway.
Because, fuck me, I’m stagnating to the point of a pointless existence. Not to be too melodramatic, but if I continue my current lifestyle for much longer, than I may as well not be alive. I’d essentially be waiting for my own death. Days becomes weeks, which become months, then years and you’ve wasted the part of your life when you’re actually still young and healthy enough to DO something.
I’ve got to try. I’ve GOT to.
I don’t know anyone else who is like me. 29 years old, single, alone, very little social life, and on a tiny income (which necessitates very little social life, so there’s something of a vicious circle there).
But the thing is, this is the life I chose for myself. Minimalistic. So there’s no one to blame here but myself. Every girl that’s been crazy enough to go out with me (since my very first girlfriend), I’ve broken up with. I leave them. Similarly, I quit any job I’ve had where there’s actually any chance of a career developing.
The truth is I don’t know of any other way to shake up life and roll the dice other than the ultimate act of escapism – travel. And make no mistake, this is escapism. Big time.
I’m being sensible about this though; I’m going to try to make sure that when I come back I have some money, so there’s a platform there and I’m not broke.
Will I come back to live in London? Will I end up with a worse or better houseshare? Will I end up with a better or worse job? Will I end up happier? I don’t know but it’s all part of the game. I’m risking all of these things by rolling the dice.
Yes, I could come up with a six, of course I could. I could also roll a one.
But I just can’t stay on a three any more. It might even be a two sometime, I don’t know.
Hell, who knows, I might not even come back. Maybe I’ll find a way to keep on going.
This was one of the major factors in my decision to go – I couldn’t come up with a compelling enough reason to stay. Not one. There’s no one and nothing here for me.
Let’s not end on a negative note, and I don’t want you to think I’m feeling negative about my plans. I’m very excited, very scared and quite anxious. I still don’t know if I’m doing the right thing but only time will let me know that now.
I’m taking control, I’m making an impact and I’m fucking doing something about it.
In 19 weeks, I’ll be gone and that is a fantastic feeling.
p.s – wow, 403 views on this little corner of the internet now! I appreciate your interest in my self-indulgent rambling.