Feeling like a travel imposter
For as long as I can remember, I’ve always been fascinated with travel stories and other cultures. I think that explains why I studied anthropology, international development and languages. I’ve always wanted to travel!
I remember that most of my classmates had visited over 15 countries! Most of them wouldn’t even go to an all inclusive vacation. Instead, they would travel backpack, stay in a cheap hostel and meet locals.
So how could I be a real travel lover? I had visited like two countries at that time. I felt strange being such a travel lover without having traveled that much. Back then, I thought I was weird. I felt like an imposter.
My biggest travel experience
But then, I realized that I’ve had one of the biggest travel experiences: moving from Peru to Canada.
I hadn’t traveled around the world, but moving here was a big deal for us. We left our country and my mom left all of her family. If that’s not travel experience, what is?
I was young, although it went pretty well, I still had to live with a new weather, new place, new language and new lifestyle. When I arrived in Quebec, I didn’t know a single word of french. Not even bonjour! My mom even had to put sticky notes in french on everything at our home so she could remember the french word for it. It was a whole new world to discover.
I think that my desire of exploring and discovering new places started there. When I took my first flight at 6 years old.
The desire of traveling
Although, I didn’t travel a lot during my teenager years, I’ve always wanted to travel. I’ve always been fascinated by other cultures and discovering new places. I’ve always had this strong desire to travel and meet new people.
I think you know that you have it in you when you watch movies that show beautiful cities, or worse, romantic stories abroad and you feel the need to book a flight ticket ASAP. Has it happened to you lately? I remember wishing that I’d fall in love with a beautiful stranger while traveling in Europe… Such a cliché. But hey, that’s just ’cause I watch too many romantic comedies, haha. In a way, movies and books (and now YouTube videos, Instagram pictures, blogs and websites) make us travel. Even Netflix makes us wanna travel. So many cooking TV shows and movies that take place all around the world. We’re all wannabe travelers!
Make your own travel journey
I now have traveled to some countries, maybe not as much as my fellow classmates, but this doesn’t make me less or more of a travel lover. We’re all different, we don’t travel the same way and we don’t do the same activities. Each travel experience is different. Don’t compare yourself. You can listen to tips and travel stories from others, but make your own. Don’t try to do the same trip as someone else. You will find your way of traveling and it will be fantastic.
If you like food, then travel to taste and try new meals and then bring back home new recipes. If you like sports, then travel and try new activities and enjoy the outdoors. If you like to travel fast, do it, run if you want. If you like to travel slow, take your time. There’s so many ways to travel. And there isn’t a “good” one or a “bad” one. You just have to find your own way. For example, I know that I like to eat at nice restaurants when I travel. And I try to do stuff that I don’t usually do at home. Travel makes us do crazy things, but it also helps us grow as a person (but hey, that’s a whole other story).
The Wanderlust call
Recently, I’ve had what I call « the wanderlust call ». The desire to travel and explore the world. It’s that moment when you realize that if you don’t change something in your life or if you don’t push yourself to do something new, you will continue living a monotonous life and work most of your days.
Days become weeks, weeks become months, months become years… and you haven’t traveled to any city that you wanted to see. Instead, you’ve bought 3 pairs of shoes, 2 pairs of boots, a new winter coat, partied like a beast and ate at fancy restaurants. When you do the maths, you could have gone easily to Paris without any problem with all that money. That’s when you realize that you can travel and that you need to change things in order to make your dream come true.
BOOM. That’s when you get the wanderlust call.
I bet you’ve read tons of articles about people traveling. How easy it can be. How they planned everything. How cheap the flight was. How wonderful everything went.
You say to yourself « I’m gonna do it too! This year is MY year! I will travel too! » and then, you start working, pitching on a new big project, working 24 hours a day and the days go by and the only trip you’ve done is a 3 hours drive to visit family. Don’t get me wrong, I love road trips, but you haven’t done any of your travel plans.
I get you, I’m like you. I can be super spontaneous, but I tend to leave to tomorrow what I can do today. But what makes you stay? What’s in your way? If you really want to do something, you make it happen. So, just go! And I’m writing this down, so I can remember it. Saying you’re gonna do something makes it more real. At least for me. This is like my personal travel manifesto.
Now, here’s your little challenge: choose a city or a country that you want to visit and a travel due date. Yeah, a travel due date (summer 2017, October 2017, 2018; whatever works for you). Now stick to it. Commit to achieving your dreams!
Let me start: London – 2017!
This is the beginning of your travel trip. Make your dream come true!