A single sunset, a single capture, a single moment making a nine hour flight worth every second.
I’m always shocked when people mention that they dislike travelling too far for too short of time, for me, in moments like these, I struggle to qualify just how far is far and quantify just how short is too short. The promise of just one barefoot walk along a Saint Lucian beach with this beautiful candy coloured sky would have me boarding a plane again without delay.
So far this year I’ve travelled to 20 countries and packed my suitcase to escape the UK 24 times since January, each and every trip spending less than 10 days away from home. I’ve travelled to Qatar for just three days in and flew almost 24 hours across the globe to Tahiti for just 8, each time creating new memories and fulfilling lifelong dreams. The romance of travel, for me, has never been defined by length and time.
‘All that way for just a few days?’ In a heartbeat! For me the luxury of being able to travel for weeks, months at a time has never been an option since leaving university, for numerous reasons. As well as blogging here and creating content around the world, my main (and most months only!) source of income comes from my voice over work and hosting jobs. My reality is that I need to be home rather frequently to pay the bills! My husband and friends are also limited with their own holiday allowance and whilst I’m happy and comfortable travelling alone I’ve always found an experience shared means so much more.
I was recently on a press trip in Lanzarote and one of the hotel guests (quite rudely, if I say so myself!) said to me that I am essentially ‘not qualified’ to be a travel journalist/blogger because I am only staying in resorts for a few days at a time. Whilst politely smiling and wishing her a great day (through gritted teeth of course ;)) I walked back to my hotel room with quite the bubbling vent going of in my brain! It’s not the first time that someone has mentioned to me that ‘you can’t really get a feel for the country if you are only there for a few days’. It’s quite frustrating to be judged about never really being able to ‘fully experience’ a country when you are only able to spend a few days there. I cant absolutely see where some people may be coming from but for me and my own personal travel history, I highly disagree.
To put off travelling to a country I have always wanted to travel to purely because I don’t have enough time to ‘see it all’ is, in my opinion, ludicrous. As a married woman in her 30’s I can’t imagine I will ever be graced with more ‘free’ time in my lifetime, apart from when my (eventual) children grow up and leave home. As soon as the Mr and I start expanding our family time will literally stand still, or so I’m told! So with a week or five days free here and there in my current lifestyle I’ve never had and most likely never will have, more opportunities to travel.
For me careful planning partnered with a will to explore and maximise each day, makes every corner of the world accessible. If I could only travel for weeks at a time I speak for both my husband and I when I say we wouldn’t have seen or discovered half of the places we have. Now don’t get me wrong, we are fortunate, Mems works in construction so we are often able to take a good three weeks to a month off around the christmas period so we HAVE taken longer trips to further away locations. We travelled to four different countries in South America one year and spent three weeks driving the East coast of Australia at the beginning of this year, both long trips were incredible! Would I only ever go back for three weeks plus though? Absolutely not, sign me up for a week in either of those places tomorrow!
I have also had the opportunity to work abroad for two summers, spending three months at a time on two different Greek Islands, which was amazing and as much as I encourage shorter trips if you do have the time and money to spend on a longer, more immersive trip abroad then I absolutely highly highly recommend it. Adjusting to a completely different way of living and fully adapting to another culture is a priceless experience but unfortunately, the luxury of being away for so long just is’t a reality for most.
Having travelled for so long I have always had a longing desire to live abroad once again or spend a few months in another country but making a home in London has always been our priority. At the start of our relationship Mems and I would battle over whether or not we would one day live abroad but Mr C would always highlight that being able to travel the world for shorter periods of time may not be the textbook dream of living abroad but having a home and a steady source of security is far more valuable in the long run. I am slowly but surely warming to his thinking and adopting his mindset naturally. As I have highlighted, if you have the means and are lucky enough to have little ties and financial obligations at home then by all means spread your wings and book your one way ticket but for those of you reading this blog a little later on in life, I am the biggest believer that there really is no strict time allowance when it comes to travelling the world. Book it! Even if it is just for a few days.