So, about 9 months ago I wrote a post on how I sometimes felt like selling all my junk, stuffing the rest into a backpack and take off. In the mean time I’ve been in Vietnam for 5 weeks, which was certainly an adventure, but to be honest left me in a state of unfulfillment. A big part of that was my own unrealistic expectations – to the country and to myself.
Before we went I’d expected beautiful scenery, authentic and delicious street food and most of all I’d expected myself to trout along with a joyous, spontaneous attitude and a constant smile on my face. That’s not quite what happened.
I found Vietnam to be very rough and dirty and I was completely overwhelmed by the constant noise and turmoil. I felt like I was constantly being ripped of (which I probably was) and found it hard to get “off the beaten track” and see something other that the designated tourist route. Also I got sick – a lot…
But worst of all, I didn’t enjoy myself. I found myself acting suspicious rather than being open and spontaneous and I was unable to let go and just go with the flow. I couldn’t help it and I constantly blamed myself for this, which obviously didn’t make it any better. Goddammit I knew that it was all a matter of perspective … and yet I couldn’t seem to find the right one.
I realized (with a little help) along the way that I was so afraid of being “just a stupid tourist” that I ended up being even more of one. I was so attached to that self image of me being in control and I was unwilling to accept the fact that I was really inexperienced when it came to travel in Asia and so of course I would make “mistakes” – and that was okay.
As I said to someone recently “I am so afraid of ending up in that exact same situation again – that I’m already in it”
My point is that there is nothing wrong with Vietnam. And there is nothing wrong with me. But my ego got in the way.
When I left I was so afraid that I would never feel like traveling again. And that really scared me because it had been all I’d thought about for as long as I could remember.
That feeling stayed with me for about … two weeks. Then I was ready to jet off again. The old urge to get rid of all my stuff and set of for an unknown adventure once more began to surface and I felt like doing it “right” this time.
Fast forward about 1,5 month to me exclaiming “OH MY GOD WHAT HAVE WE DONE?!” as me and Jonas simultaneously hit send on the email that terminated the lease to our apartment. We didn’t really have a plan as much as an idea that we wanted to leave in the beginning of 2015 and probably stay on the road for a year, which wouldn’t be possible did we continue to pay 6500+ DKK in rent every month. So we hit send – the rest would have to work itself out.
And boy did it. I’m typing this from our new home – a spare room that two of Jonas’s friends have agreed to lend us for 2,5 months until December. The bathroom is 4 times the size of our old one and they have a cinema in the basement. That’s right – a friggin’ cinema! But the best part is that they are such great and hospitable people. Right from the start they have gone out of their way to make us feel at home and we are both beyond grateful for this.
I can’t help but smile when I think about what my mother-in-law said to us just a few days ago: “When you show the universe you are ready to let go it will bring you something new”.
Well, take off is February 10th – and I’m SO ready to be a Future World Traveller!