How Travel Changed My LifeTraveling did not change me.
I have always wanted to travel but adulthood caught me completely off guard. I would have considered myself successful though because I have a job that pays - only if it wasn't slowly taking my life away. I realized life is too short to be stuck daily in traffic and hating my boss. The world is too big for one lifetime that I would never want to end up regretting not doing the things I could have done. I longed for freedom. And so, I created mine.
I traveled one place after another to make a temporary escape from routine, cultural norms, social paradigm, work... pretty much everything adulthood has laid before me and be gone somewhere else where life is completely different. Well, it is indeed different.
I was welcomed with uncertain hitchhikes, uncomfortable habal-habal rides, slow buses, suicidal vans, delayed flights, and nauseating boat rides that have slowly opened my eyes to the ugly truth about traveling. How it isn't really an escape. How it pulls you back to reality. The reality not every traveler really talks about.
|Balut Island overlooking Sarangani Islands|
But why do I keep on traveling despite all of that?
I wouldn't say I am well-traveled. I still spend most of my days with a 9-5 job, just like you do. But whenever I have the chance to do something new, I don't let it slip away. Because to tell you honestly, traveling is the most exhausting, financially draining, and troublesome thing I have ever been so GRATEFUL to do. Why would I deny myself the experience? It is such an amazing world out there.
|White Island, Camiguin|
And so it follows how easily contented and grateful I am for the small things that often go unnoticed and things that I used to take for granted. Shelter, clean water, fresh air, food. I could go on forever.
It is amazing how I keep on making friends from all over the country without ever just "adding friends" online. Or how the kindness of strangers and locals I barely knew always blows me away.
|Mount Pulag, Benguet|
It is amazing how I go out to find myself only to be lost in wonder.
And much more amazing how standing on top of the mountain makes me feel small that even my problems - no matter how big they are - seem insignificant. It only tells me that there's nothing I cannot conquer.
It is amazing how I can be dead tired yet feel so alive.
And even more amazing how different locals, different tribes, and different races teach me the same thing: we are all humans and everybody should be treated with kindness and respect.
|Virgin Island, Panglao, Bohol|
|Lake Holon, T'boli, South Cotabato|
Traveling did not change me. But it made me realize who I am deep inside. And just by living the life that reflects who I really am, life has never been better. :)
How about you? How has travel changed your life? Write down your story and share it with Traveloka.
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