A Case of Traveler's Block

Monday, June 04, 2012Ryan Mach

I'm having a serious bout of traveler's block. I seem to have lost interest in traveling. I have 3 flights booked a few months back (Palawan, Bangkok, Davao) but I don't feel like going. The idea that I'd let my hard-earned money to buy those tickets go kaput bums me out. My head says 'don't go', and my heart asks 'what's wrong.' Maybe, I'm not wired for this. I'm no Kerouac after all. I got bitten by the travel bug but now that the wound was healed up, my wanderlust is slowly burning out. Not enough inspiration or guidance to rekindle the fire.

I haven't traveled in more than a month now. Last trip I had was in my hometown where I embarked on a quest to know my own backyard better by exploring its uncharted territory. After that, I felt a bit empty and jaded. I also began to ask myself if the road is for me. The trip didn't in any way deflate me. Quite the contrary, I was inspired to share my little adventure. But I hit a roadblock, which now leaves me wondering whether I'll keep on wandering or steer away from the course.

Traveling entails forking up a considerable amount of cash to fund your upcoming trips. Part of my traveler's block has something to do with money. I have bills to pay monthly. While I earn a few dollars from my blog, it's just not enough to pay for the accommodation and food. My family doesn't agree with my frequent trips. They consider my traveling as a luxury, a whim. You should save, they'd tell me. I know the money I spend on travel is well spent, and there's no price in experiencing a new place but when I look at my savings and expenses, I begin to think hard whether it's all worth it.

Apart from being expensive, travel can be tiring. Constant travel can weigh a traveler down. Some days you're inspired to do a list of places you'd go next, and you take off and travel very often to the point where you spend more time on the road than at your own house. Sometimes, the inspiration to travel vanishes faster than your money. The thing though is I read travel blogs and travel magazines every day. With information and good travel reads available, inspiration is not hard to find. It can be misplaced but hopefully not lost.

Travelers are supposed to always love travel. They're always inspired to go to places unexplored. They hardly ever lose their passion to be on the road. I don't think seasoned globetrotters have experienced what I'm going through right now. Or maybe, they just don't want to admit that at one point in their lives, they couldn't find travel. Perhaps it's a normal phase that's easily overcome over time.

I should take some time out and let this negative vibe pass. A change of scenery might do the trick, although that doesn't make any sense because traveling offers different scenery all together. I have read somewhere that traveling is more of a mindset than a destination. It puts things into the right perspective and I hope this insight will help me pack my bags again and go sailing, or flying.

Is traveler's block normal? Did you go through the same phase? How did you overcome it?

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