Travel Drought That I Just Have To End

Caen during travel drought

Travel Drought:

Travel drought might not quite be the right phrase as I’ve been to Caen a few times over the last couple of years and a music festival in Belgium, but it’s now been eight years since I’ve been on a plane. It’s not that travelling by boat doesn’t count, it does, it’s just these where weekend trips to one place. Not what I consider travel, or at least not what I want to consider travel.

Before this eight year travel drought I’d go on holiday two or three times a year, for weeks at a time. I travelled round most of Europe, seen a fair bit of America and went to Morocco.

It felt like a start…

…Then it ended.

And really I only have myself to blame.

Why Did The Travelling Stop?

The main reason for the travel drought is money. Isn’t it always. I hated my job, quit it because I really really did hate it (after previously loving it. The first of two times this has now happened to me) and rather than get a new job straight away I lived off my credit card for a while creating a lot of debt.

After a break up I continued to be unemployed for a while and still living off my card before finally getting a part-time job. I wanted full-time but it seemed at the time that they just didn’t exist anymore, or they did but in the shape of a soulless call centre job and I wasn’t in the right frame of mind for that.

(I tried, lasted two weeks and cried everyday. Not for me).

With my debts mounting travel just kind of stopped. I went to America with my parents the first week of this new job and had an awesome time enjoying Disney World and such like, but that was the last time I stepped on a plane eight years ago.

Am depressing myself just typing that.

Anyone who’s had a huge credit card bill and part-time job will know that you’re then essentially stuck.

I was basically paying back the interest each month and barely covering the minimum payment. I had gone from managing two Blockbusters to working part-time in a card shop. This remained the way for too long.

The Trips I Did Take?

The little bit of money I could save went towards an incredible stag do at Rock Werchter, (A weekend I’ll never forget) and then another trip there two years later…

… Then nothing for a while.

Just before the second trip I managed to get a loan to cover my credit card. Previously I hadn’t been able to get one but this time after working a lot of extra Christmas hours I managed to get a five year loan at an incredibly better interest rate than my credit card was.

Now was time to start trying to fix things.

Getting myself out of this slump took time, but I had plenty of motivation and support.

Eventually after a year of trying I got myself a better job, albeit still part-time, and began to work my way back up to management. During this time I took a couple of boat trips to Caen with my ex, one of which included a day trip to Paris,  and that travelling feeling was starting to come back to me.

I missed it.

I love being in new places.

Honestly don’t know how I survived this travel drought for so long.

Where Am I Now?

So fast forward to the present and once again I’m no longer a manager (and know now that I never will be again because of way to many reasons to list here). I have a part-time job, but more importantly I spend my days writing, filming and taking photos. All the things I love.

The five years since the loan have passed, and that’s paid off, but unfortunately there is a little on my card again.

But…

… I’m in the best position I’ve been in for ten years. Financially.

So now I’m saving quickly, and dreaming of stepping on that plane once again.

I think I’m someone who just has to travel. The two trips round Europe on Inter rail are still on my mind all the time. I can feel myself smiling when I talk about them. There’s just a positivity and happiness in me that mainly exists when I’m travelling and/or creating.

Hence the new blog.

I need both them things to be a constant in my life.

It’s a large part of who I am.

Now that I’m close to being back to that person. I can’t let it go.

What Next?

Plenty of incredible things have happened to me over the eight years since I last boarded that flight to America. I’m not one for regrets and I believe that all the decisions and paths we take, better or worse, make up who we are so I understand that the absence of travel may have been necessary in my life.

But I’m 100% certain that it’s now time for it to return.

While I’m still months away from that happening, I can start smiling at the thought again that it no longer feels impossible and that the travel drought is coming to an end.

Stephen

 

 

 

 

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