As long as I can remember, I have had the urge to travel the world. The first time I heard the word wanderlust, I knew that was the word I had been looking for to describe this deep seated desire to get the heck out of there and see something different. Lay eyes on mountains, rivers, markets, people, food, and everything else that could possibly be different – all of it waiting for me out there.
My family was able to nurture my desire for the world, and together we conquered countries. We biked around Sicily. We sailed the coast and islands of Croatia. We saw the Eiffel Tower and Big Ben. We bought banjos in Morocco, and celebrated Queen’s Day in Holland (which, might I add, happens to be my birthday). My sense of adventure was born, nurtured, and celebrated. I was taught to want to understand other cultures, to learn from the wisdom of others around the world, and to treasure my heritage.
Fast forward to college: when I discovered that it was an acceptable, and even expected thing to study abroad. Hello? Me? A different country? School? Sign me up. Scotland here I come. During this time I continued to discover more about the world, but more importantly, myself. Traveling alone, or with friends, is freeing. You are in charge of your destiny. You can eat baguettes on the side of a river, black out in a five-story club, see art, eat haggis, learn a few words in another language, or go to the Guinness factory. You can open your eyes, and your heart to the greatest freedom that this world has to offer. There is always more to learn.
Now that I am responsible (ish), self-sufficient (ish), and on my own (again – ish) – this isn’t something that I get to do. My days are consumed by my job, my family, and trying to figure out how to manage an effective budget. I haven’t left the country in over a year – and let me tell you, I feel that itch every day. I know that as soon as I am able I will be back on the road again, hitting the dusty trail, in search of good food, friends, and adventure. Watch out world – I’m coming for ya.