Love Letter #15: Long-term travel & the challenges of blogging on the road

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cambodian tuk-tuk driver relaxesSiem Reap, Cambodia

Dear Love,

It’s taken me a long time to get to this point of updating you. I apologize…

I’m in my 5th month of traveling and this is what I’ve come to know:

 

The goal of blogging-on-the-road is a massive beast!

Not a simple task. It’s not that the countries I’ve traveled after India weren’t as amazing, but I’ve quickly learned that it’s nearly impossible for me to take you through my journey as I’m experiencing it. So I’ve decided to detour from my chronological mission of posting only India (Look out- I may get messy!)

While I’m super-excited to share all that I’m learning about impromptu trip planning and treading the waters of long-term solo travel — aka I’m basically getting my ass kicked — writing and posting pictures demands a lot of time, energy and a consistent internet connection.

Usually, it’s two out of three that I don’t have.

 

Life is teaching me to live by the day. But this is still work.

Challenges:

•  Money:

No telling how long my journey will last, so I try to travel, live and sight see cheaply to stretch funds; although the occasional splurge is necessary and quite nice.

•  Homelessness:

It’s hard to gauge what country (or city) I’ll be in from day-to-day, so most of my hotels are found after I step off the bus. I point to a budget name in my guidebook and have the driver take me there– then I do my neighborhood hotel search on foot. I can sleep in a tin can if it’s been scrubbed clean but most places run pretty budget basic & after days of not having white sheets, a firm mattress and peace of mind comforts of room cleanliness… I’m tempted to spit on myself for being a budget backpacking traveler!

•  Itinerary:

I plan my days either the night before or …that day. It’s all dependent upon energy.

•  Possessions:

The only time I despise travel is when I’m violently aware of the fact …I’ve become the sherpa of my house. It’s made me empathize with snail life (no wonder those things travel so slow).

How hard is a drifter’s life? Coming from a structured world, it feels like a vigorous workout!

 

I want to make each day of my travel freedom count, but there are still times, my freedom can feel like a curse.

Obviously there are times when having so much travel freedom stresses me out. This kind of freedom is not natural- we weren’t born into the wild but into structured lives of domesticity. Sometimes, I don’t know what to do with it. It feels like a curse.

Yet, it’s as if I were a dying man– I want to exhaust these days and live them fully, so that I’ll not have regrets. Whenever I’m about to curse this journey’s intensity, its need for responsibility and vision (even when I’m making drifter choices) and the raggedy toll it takes on me, I try to remember this.

Some day, I’ll look back on this freedom and wish I were living it again.

Feeling spotty,


GRRRL

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Love Letter #14: When life forces you into the uncomfortable spaces of long-term travel
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