I joke with people sometimes that I’m not a good traveler, but it’s true.
A good traveler usually sees all the recommended tourist locations, and eats a new food every meal. They socialize with other travelers and go out partying all night long. Also, they have unlimited amounts of energy to spend in the heat and sunlight because they are beach loving bums.
I am not a good traveler.
1. I don’t know where I’m going.
When I go out for the day, sometimes I have a rough idea of where I’m headed. By rough I mean that if you ask me where I’m headed, I sometimes respond with something along the lines of: “oh you know…that place with the bamboo…” because I have no idea what the name is.
Some places are easier than others to remember. Angkor Wat, for example, is a world wonder. Tomb Raider was also filmed there, so who could forget? On the other hand, Fushimi Inari-taisha (a shrine in Japan), is a harder name to remember. Its known to me as “the orange gates place”.
I also like to go out and just get lost – in fact, I make it a point to do this! For me, I find this is the best way of adventuring. Everything you come across is spontaneous. Since I’m a surprise-loving-freak this makes it 10x more special and fun! It also makes my travels more Burning-Man-esque!
2. I sometimes stay in and watch movies.
It’s as simple as that. There have been plenty of days I have just stayed in the hostel, eaten cereal and chips ahoy, watching a 13 hour marathon of cartoons. Don’t judge me!
My biggest episode of this was after my scary experience in Vietnam. I was pretty shaken up and just wanted to be home. I actually seriously considered buying a ticket home, but am glad I stuck it out! The closest I could get to feeling like I was at home was to lay in bed and watch cartoons.
I find that staying in and being anti social is a great way to combat homesickness. Also, my little introvert batteries need it. Sorry, I am weak. I can see the respect levels dropping in your eyes.
3. I don’t usually do the ‘touristy things’.
This makes some of my fellow tourists cringe. “You’re not going to go see the temple of 1,000 Buddhas?!” Honey, I’ve seen about a fucking million Buddhas at this point, so I’m real good on all of that. Instead, I prefer doing things the locals do. Mostly hanging out at animal cafes, such as: cats, rabbits and dogs. Lately, my adventures have been decided by where all the Pokemon are.
4. I eat at McDonalds and 7/11.
I know it’s getting pretty bad now, but I can’t lie to you guys. This is a confessional! I ate a Fish Filet every day while I was in Hong Kong for dinner (it was $2), and in Japan I’m enjoying frozen gyoza from 7/11 for breakfast. In Singapore, it was instant noodle cups. I know I could eat from these places at home, so does it make it better if I cringe with guilt every time I eat an easy microwave meal?
Allow me to explain myself. I do make an effort to eat the local cuisine as much as I can – and I always make sure to try the speciality dishes. This is a strategic move though, it’s a great way to save money!
5. I spend my time blogging.
For some reason, I get hate on about this via douchebags on the internet. There are some seriously snarky trolls out there. I need to develop some thicker skin. Sometimes, instead of seeing that temple that I feel like I’ve seen 700 of, I stay in and blog.
I know, I know, this is a once in a lifetime chance I have to be here – I should only be at the hostel to sleep. Every other waking minute I should be exploring, seeing, doing, photographing and pushing my body to the limits. Sometimes I do that, but other times I don’t.
Blogging helps me feel more connected when people interact with me via the blog. I love it when ya’ll leave comments, that’s the money shot right there. I also want to invest not only in my blog, but in myself. Learning about blogging, marketing, building an audience, creating good content and everything else that goes along with my dream of becoming a blogger. Now is the time, while I don’t have another job draining all my energy and sucking my soul. At least I’m doing something constructive right? That’s redeeming.
When you go on vacation, is it anything like this?
– Zoom <3