I left New York on Saturday, May 28, 2016. That was a year ago. A YEAR! I was never really homesick (except maybe for bagels), which tells me leaving New York was the right choice. I don’t regret any of it. Even when things don’t go the way I want, I’m still glad I took a chance and started this adventure.
Sure I could have made some smarter decisions, planned a little better, but overall things have gone pretty well. I’m not really sure where I thought I’d be by now, but I’ve done and seen some pretty amazing things. I’ve learned a lot and I like to think I’ve grown a bit too.
I’m writing this from Sri Lanka, the 8th country I’ve visited this year. Eight countries in 365 days! I definitely didn’t expect this adventure to take me here. We’re exploring Sri Lanka for about 2 more weeks and then I’ll be home. And then…no idea.
In a year of travel (and for a long time before) I’ve read a lot of travel blogs. There are a lot of people out there having awesome adventures and sharing their experiences. Some people have even turned it into a job. I’ve found some of it to be really helpful. Before going to a new place I read up on what other people did and saw and thought. There are some really awesome ladies out there, making a living off their travels. But some of the travel blogs seem a bit preachy and fake, or forced. They seem to think they have it all figured out, and if your goal isn’t to emulate this free, nomad existence, something must be wrong. I’ve read too many articles about how to quit your job to become a full-time traveler, and why the life of a permanent nomad is the best possible life. Working in an office, being happy at home, these things are like dirty words. I hate that. There is no one right way to live your life. You’re not doing life wrong if you’re content to stay home. You’re also not doing life wrong if you do quit your job and buy a one-way ticket. Do what feels right, do what makes you happy, until it doesn’t anymore, then do something else. That’s something I’ve learned this year. There’s no one right answer.
The past 365 days have been full of incredible adventures. As for the next 365 days? One big shoulder shrug and an “I dunno, we’ll see.”
My year in numbers:
Sleeping Places: 47
Student Groups: 7
Elephants: 60 +
Broken Bones: 2 (I’m pretty sure I broke my pinky toe, but I’m not certain)
Mosquitoes: Thousands, hundreds of thousands
Dog surgeries watched: about 8 (which is 8 more than I ever expected)
Trips to the top of Doi Suthep: 8
Cooking Classes: 7
Blog Posts: 50 (this is my 50th post)
Having a terrible sense of direction has made me really good at getting lost. Sometimes getting lost is the best part!