There is an inclination that tickles at the soles. It can be instigated by photography, worldly tales, reading, or curiosity of culture, language or animals, among others. There is no known cure, only a brief reprieve achieved by satiating it as it occurs. In so doing, one accomplishes a broader, more worldly understanding, heightened awareness and cultural intelligence, and a soul-enhancing jubilation. It’s a win-win. The only negative side-effects are the increasing frequency of re-occurrence, occasional communication obstacles accompanied by an obsession with language guides, and an occasional but minor and totally justifiable financial strain.
If you suffer from restlessness, boredom in routine, chronic impulses to peruse photography of foreign places or parks, or read articles about traveling and hiking and immediately have an urge to skip work, pack your things and disembark for those destinations, then you, too, are likely a victim of wanderlust.
Embracing your affliction is the first step, for total acceptance enables you to live your life to the fullest, confidently.
If you’re uncertain, this Adventurer’s Credo was designed as a general guideline based on personal experiences:
- Believe in and trust yourself. You know yourself best. Don’t let the criticism of others hinder your progress or prevent you from pursuing your ambitions.
- Seize your opportunities. Days are short and years get shorter.
- Accept that you don’t always have to have everything planned out. Sometimes it’s best to “get a taste” of a place and go from there, but you must:
- Take the first step. Make the commitment.
(There are a million reasons why something won’t work; all you need to do is focus on one reason why it will, and follow through.)
- Get in touch with other hikers and travelers. Their experiences might provide helpful insight to get more out of your own exploits. (Also note #7)
- Pack light, don’t forget a sweater, and make sure you save room for a souvenir or two. (A first aid kit and sewing kit can also come in handy.)
- Be true to yourself and follow your heart, for it, in turn, will guide your feet.
An adventure can happen in a weekend; one could achieve it in a day. Sometimes it’s as easy as packing a car and just driving, whether there’s a map or not. For no matter what the arguments might be that weigh against such “shenanigans”, there is far more satisfaction in humouring a whim or living a dream than sitting idly and thinking about it.
It’s important to remember that sometimes things go wrong, but understand that people are surprisingly helpful if you ever get lost, have no idea where you are, or lock yourself out.
Life’s too short to get stressed out about when things go wrong, being caught in unsavoury weather, forgetting your phone charger and spare batteries, or misplacing a sock. Enjoy it. Wouldn’t it be that much more awesome if you can honestly say you laughed in the face of adversity and had a kick-ass time anyway?