Before I went travelling I had a plan, and that plan started with New Zealand. There was just something about the country that attracted me to it, the natural beauty of the place, the mountains, the unique landscape, the people, I couldn’t wait to get over there and see it for myself. I also thought New Zealand would be a good starting point for someone like myself who had never travelled before. The culture wouldn’t be much different and there wouldn’t be a language problem.
From here the plan was to step it up a bit and go to Asia, do some ‘real’ travelling as I thought of it. I thought that after 2 years travelling around New Zealand I would be craving something a bit more adventurous, I would want that extreme culture shock, to be put out of my comfort zone and experience crazy things. And this is exactly how I feel! But I didn’t follow the original plan and instead, I went to Australia.
I don’t know why but Australia has never overly interested me, I’ve never seen myself coming here. But there were 2 reasons for going. Firstly, I’d be silly to travel to the other side of the world and not go to Australia, it would be a waste not to. And secondly, I’m a bit broke and with the wages over here I know I can save enough money to fund a 6-month Asia trip, easy.
So I went to Australia and 6 months later I’m still here. In my previous post, ‘Culture Shock, It’s Not Just A Third World Country Thing’, I outlined some of the things I didn’t like about Australia. The flies, the expense, more than anything the tv adverts. But I realised after a while that all this stuff wasn’t the problem. The real problem is me, and the fact that I’m extremely impatient.
Once I get an idea in my head I want to do it now! I’m bad for planning ahead and getting excited about the future rather than just living in the now, and unfortunately, the idea of Asia is stuck in my head. When I see my travel friends photos of Asia on facebook it gives me butterflies in my tummy, I trawl through peoples travel blogs and it just inspires me even more. I think I just need to calm down a bit.
As always it was a skype call with my Mum that got my head straight again.
Mum: “I get the impression you’re not fussed about Australia, why’s that?”
Me: “I dunno. I’m just not feeling it. I can’t stop thinking about Asia, I want to go and do some real travelling, experience totally different cultures, I’m just not bothered about here. Once we finish this job I think we’ll just do a really quick road trip and leave.”
Mum: “Do you think you’ll ever go back to Australia in the future?”
Me: “No, I’ll be wanting to spend my money going to new places rather than repeating myself.”
Mum: “Well then, I suggest you take your time and see Australia properly. I know you and you’ll kick yourself if you don’t, you’ll regret it in the future.”
And of course Mother always knows best.
It was like a switch went on in my head and I could see how irrational I was being. Why do I feel this need to rush to Asia anyway? It’s not like I have to be home by a certain date, I’m not on any time limit, I have nothing but time to make the most of these experiences!
Sometimes I think I forget about where I am. I’m in Australia! It may not have that cultural difference I’m after, but there’s still plenty of things I love here. Beautiful beaches, the chance to learn how to surf, camping and hiking, natural beauty, I would be stupid not to make the most of this chance!
So just like that everything’s changed and that feeling of excitement is back. I’ve been working for over 3 months now and the pennies are really started to pile up. I’ve got until August to save as much as possible and then I’ll be back in the campervan, taking my time, exploring Australia and experiencing everything it has to offer. Because what I’ve realised is that Asia’s not going anywhere, it will still be there when I get around to going, whenever that may be.