Memoirs of a Young Traveler

I have a travel bug. If I could, I would travel the entire world 5 times over. Every patch of soil. Every building. Every ocean.

I always want to be somewhere else. A different city. A different state. A different country. I get bored with where I am and want to move onto the next place.

Since I was 2 I’ve been talking about travelling the world. I took the opportunity in high school to go to Paris and London for 1 week on a school trip. But, amidst school and the typical drama of being a high schooler, I look back on that week feeling as though I never actually set foot there. This is only exacerbated by the significant lack of photographs I took and the lack of souvenirs I bought. So I knew the moment I returned to the United States that I had to go back. My best friends in high school, Denise and Mandie, and I made a list our senior year of all the countries in Europe we were going to visit together (everywhere except Slovakia and Slovenia). We planned, we dreamed. But, we never actually ended up going. So I planned and dreamed with others over the years, much to the same result. For various reasons, predominately money and time, no one was ever willing to commit to the idea of making a big trip to Europe with me. Backpacking across the continent, staying in hostels.

Time and money. Two factors that ultimately prevented me from being able to study abroad in a foreign country during my 4 years at American University. As other people went to country after country though, and sent pictures from remote locations, it only increased my travel bug. When everyone else starts going everywhere and you’re going no where you begin to wonder if your life will be permanently stagnant. If maybe, despite your dreams you’re never actually going to see anything. Will I ever see the inside of the Tower of London? Will I see the Taj Mahal? Machu Pichu? Will I walk the streets of Johannesburg? Stroll the fields of Mongolia?  It’s a fear only amplified by the ever changing world. The realization that no more than 50 years ago Iran and Afghanistan yielded some of the greatest and most impressive man-made structures in the world; structures that have since been destroyed. If I continue to wait will all the things I want to see still be there?

My graduation from American this May, and 9 months of working as a nanny, presented me with a unique opportunity. Upon graduation I would have not only the time, but the money, to travel abroad. I could continue to wait for everyone I knew to be ready to go or I could just do it. And, I just did it.

In April of this year  I bought a ticket for England. A 10-day trip. With a 4-night stay in a hotel just outside of London, then the remainder of the trip Southwest of London, in rural England with my godfather and his family.  And so, I went to Europe. By myself.

(I have to make a note about this posting and the ones to follow. After a tragic incident with my camera, details to come later, I am still in the process of recovering my photographs from the trip. Once they are recovered I will post them but, until then I hope that these writings will suffice).


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