I am currently obsessed with Abroad in Japan. Who wouldn’t? With the beautiful locations, the in-depth knowledge about Japan, and let’s not hide it, that cheeky British man smiling his life away in a distant land, I was immediately drawn to the allure of what I have also been dreaming all my life.
THAT’S NOT WHERE I AM AT THE MOMENT
I have done my fair share of travel. I lived in Spain once (to be explained in a later post) and I have been to as many states in the U.S. as my wallet allowed (not many) but I am as some would say stuck in my hometown for a while.
This isn’t terrible, but for a while, it seemed like the end of the world. Ever since I was a child my dream was to live the life of the nomad. I wanted to travel from place to place learning about people, meeting new friends and leaving the world a better place than when I began. I don’t know if this would help you understand my obsession but my favorite Harry Potter Character is Dumbledore. I mean really, any Dumbledore-like character in a story is usually my favorite. They are wise and kind, and there’s a deep implication that the knowledge they received was through travel and experiencing life through its most magical aspects. In the Nutcracker my favorite scene is where the sweets are represented by their nations and they all dance inspired by their respective cultures. I love adventure and change and therefore I also love travel.
So, to see my wings clipped for this period in my life was close to catastrophic. I was disappointed with myself, for failing to be where I should be (which was presumably somewhere in the Middle-East or Eastern Asia brokering peace and prosperity as an important diplomat) and disappointed with life for sucking so much that it forced me to make decisions against my will. However as you can already tell (I’m assuming you’re quite intelligent and sensitive, especially since you chose to read my blog so that immediately makes you a genius ;D) there are a few problems in my thinking.
RICH BY 26
There are many many many people that made a fortune by the age of 26. I don’t even need to mention them, you’re probably already thinking about Mark Zuckerberg or any of those other fancy startup stories (If you like podcasts listen to How I Built This, there’s a ton of interesting stories about startups and their creators). I saw myself that way, because I feel like I have some of the qualities of the people in those stories, and I have a knack for bringing the right kind of people together to start things. I think we all secretly feel this way about ourselves- like we’re little diamonds hidden away in the stone waiting for the right kind of pressure to become shiny and free.
Life doesn’t always work the way we see it in our dreams, or wishes. I cannot be a Zuckerberg or a fancy startup person or even any of those other people in the “Rich by 26” club because of some very practical things. I lack vision. I have an idea and an opinion of what I believe to be right and wrong, a strong sense of justice and absolutely no focus. I have a job mind you, because a difficult past has ingrained a sense of practicality and survival that would not allow me to be idle, but I don’t have the “Idea” or the “vision” to find a solution for what I perceive as problems in my community. I also don’t have a lot of experience or qualifications. Street smarts doesn’t count as a qualification (JK I’m not street smart). Finally because of unforeseen and personal situations I don’t have the freedom to make decisions that carry a lot of risk. If I failed at a risky idea or situation, I wouldn’t be the only one to feel the consequences, and so I stick to making the safest decisions that I can manage (it doesn’t always work out, risk is inevitable for any kind of progress). These are all things that crowd my life. It doesn’t help to neatly bind them together in this manner because they seem even more daunting than before but they’re the reason I’m home and not rich by 26 (it’s also incredibly arrogant to assume that even without these situations I would be rich by 26). My saving grace, and so is yours if you feel this way about your own life, is that it doesn’t matter.
You don’t have to be rich by 26. I don’t have to be rich by 26, and getting a late start in life is a given for even more people than the many many many lucky and talented entrepreneurs who are now swimming in champagne, as I assume most rich people do. I had to learn that I’m ONLY 26, and that I’m fairly unaccomplished and it’s okay, because the expectations that led me to believe that I should be rich by 26 are mostly unfounded and unrealistic. I am a part of the majority. Lacking vision doesn’t mean I’m lazy, it means that I’m learning, and waiting to find my own calling and therefore I don’t have to pout and moan and hate my life while doing my best (as I am and I’m sure you are). Also,
No Travel does not equal No Adventure
Just because I’m stuck in a place doesn’t mean I have to be STUCK in a place. I am a deep believer of free-will and choice (save it philosophy majors, I’ll fight you) and I have decided that my cup shall runneth half full. It’s far from saying that everything’s fine but I like to think that I can give everything a fair chance. That’s what this blog is all about, or at least what it will be about. I’m in my hometown, and I like adventure and I think I’ll show you the things that make it so so interesting and frustrating. It’s an anti-travel blog. I’m going to show you the charm of staying in one place and I think it’ll be exciting because I am far from having it together, so you’ll see the messes as well as the joys of living life like it’s one big trip even if you’re not moving.