Travel. It sounds so glamorous. “I’m spending the year traveling,” she says, with a pinky finger raised and her nose to the air.
But it’s not all staying in five-star hotels and sipping mojitos on the beach while chiseled men in white linen shirts dote upon you with sandalwood fans and fresh grapes. Sometimes, traveling looks more like this:
Sometimes you shove all your crap in a bag, get on the plane, and hope for the best. And frankly, that’s the part I like. The adventure. The unknown. This isn’t to say I’d refuse a mojito if I was offered one while walking on a beach in New Zealand, but that’s not part of my expectation for this trip. My expectation is to rough it a little, and to have fun doing so.
So after a decently exciting wrestling match, I’ve managed to fit all my things for the year into one backpack and a carry-on. Tent, sleeping bag, clothes, and gear—it all fits. Moleskin notebooks, a book of Hafiz poems, and waterproof matches. Check, check, and check.
It will be a lesson in frugality, hopefully showing me how little I really need. Of course, I say that now but I could have forgotten enough important items to fill another bag, so perhaps I shouldn’t speak so soon. But if I’m honest with myself, I wear the same three outfits on rotation anyway, so I think I’ll be just fine.
My one shot at that glamorous travel experience will be the fresh grapes, I think. There are plenty of vineyards to work on and the fruits will certainly be an attainable luxury. But I’ll stick to feeding them to myself, thank you very much.
I’ve reserved today, the day before departure, for freaking out. But as I sit here sucking on a candy cane and triple checking all my lists, I’m realizing my worries are in vain. Even if I did forget something, too bad! There’s absolutely no room left to take it. I’ll miss Vermont, my favorite shirt that’s getting left behind, and my mom. But I can’t wait to live out of my backpack and read Hafiz under the wide skies of New Zealand.