Hello everyone, it’s been a while. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t miss you but this leave of absence has been due to no fault of my own – the fog of war had me clouded. This is a war of brains against words, pencil against paper, us against the clock, as essays, midterms and assignments swirl endlessly though the mind and suck every last breathe of freedom from the soul. Anxiety soon takes over as larger questions, pertaining to the purpose of this madness we called university, fill the last remaining gaps of sanity. But as students, the shining hope of this damaged world, we keep soldiering on. It was a hard fight, but thankfully the ending is in sight.
During this time, while I sat glumly questioning my existence and self-worth, I became aware of others around me doing what I yearned to be doing the most – travelling. My brother went to Nova Scotia, my parents went to Las Vegas, one friend went on exchange to France while another left to explore Europe for 6 months; and as for my blogging idol Seattle of Seattle’s Travels, well, I’ll leave the story telling up to her.
My frustration mirrored my essay word count – vast and unforgiving. Sometimes the tacky souvenirs just don’t cut it. As a student, what can one do to counter this heavy spout of mid-semester wanderlust?
Plan. That’s right, short and simply. Plan. I know it can hardly compare to flying over the Grand Canyon or trekking through the Sahara Desert on camel back but in my current position, there are few alternatives. Get cosy – a nice hot cup of tea, a blanket and a cat are preferable – and list the places you want to travel to in the next coming years. A word of advice; be realistic, a part time job preparing food can only get you so far. Also, do not neglect the country you call home. You’d be surprised what you can learn about your identity and place in the world by exploring on a cheaper, national scale. Then, once your aspirations have been inked onto paper, research prices and times to work towards your goal.
It is at the tail end of this stage that I currently find myself, having researched and saved money throughout the summer and autumn for the next three adventures on the horizon. Now, it is just a matter of booking and waiting.
Do you ever get so excited over a coming date (whether it be Christmas, a birthday or a concert) that when it does finally arrive, it’s suddenly gone too fast? Of course you do, you’re only human. Well, the same follows for a vacation. One minute you’re booking plane tickets and the next you’re nostalgically unpacking your suitcase. The best way to remedy this additional holiday burn is to enjoy the wait. Wanderlust should not be overcome, but welcomed. The anticipation of what is to come should be embraced, rather than seen as an obstacle to fulfillment This can be said about anything in life, so make it a mantra. The next time the green eyed monster stares back at a newsfeed full of adventurous photos and holiday snaps, remember that that particular journey has already passed, when yours is just beginning.