Sunday, July 8, 2012

I'm Leaving On A Jet Plane...

"It's been through hell and back" I joked with my husband as I tossed my battered, ripped, taped together, on-its-last-legs statistics book on the couch. I no longer need the book- the class ended June 17th. However, since my UPS delivery guy decided not to leave my package full of books for the new quarter at my doorstep, I needed the book one more time. There are some distribution tables I needed to access for my Quantitative Methods quiz.

So, because my mind always wanders (it's the poet in me), I started thinking about why my book was so beat down. Then I realized, the book has traveled up and down the eastern seaboard. In less than 3 months the book was in Miami Florida, Greenville North Carolina, New York City, Atlanta Georgia and Jacksonville Florida. My book has traveled more than my husband has in the past year. Yes, this book has been on adventures a plenty with me, and it kind of makes me smile.

The thing is, I have always been an adventurer. I have wanderlust pumping through my veins. A psychic once told me that I would live many places but would always return home (NY). I am only in my mid 30s and have lived many places, and lived in NY on two separate occasions long term. I have dreams of backpacking across Europe with nothing but a Eurail pass and a few Euros, but I think I'm too old for that now. However I am saving like crazy to make sure that I can afford to give my 18 year old that trip when she graduates in 2016. 

It amazes me to meet or hear of people who have never left their little corner of the earth. Whether it's a small town in the middle of Podunk USA or the borough of Queens, New York, or a small village in China, or the island of Manhattan. I think everyone should have at least one major adventure in their life. 

Most people think all NYers are big city slickers. But as I stated in the previous paragraph, there ARE people who stick to their their borough and/or nabe and never venture outside their comfort zone. I remember my mom used to have a friend who begged my mother to chaperone her on every trip into "the city" (Manhattan, or New York, New York to outsiders). Said friend didn't know how to take the train/subway and clearly didn't want to learn. So every time she had an interview or any business to conduct in Manhattan she would enlist my mom to help her navigate.

Even though it's fiction- there was an episode of Sex & The City which featured a guy who felt like he never needed to leave Manhattan because it had everything he needed. Art imitates life, so I'm sure that character was based on a real person.

I feel blessed to have family and friends in so many different cities. It allows me to travel extensively and enjoy life. I even went to San Juan Puerto Rico by myself once on the way to Saint Croix. I walked the streets alone, went to the beach alone, ate alone, swam in the pool alone, shopped alone, etc. Everyone warned me it could be dangerous. But my Spanish is decent, and I'm pretty fearless. I love traveling enough to do it alone.

I could keep typing forever, but my point is- don't let life pass you by. Remember that old Tribe Called Quest song? Take a globe. Spin it. Stop it with your fingertip. Wherever it lands- (outside a war zone) book a ticket. If you can't book a ticket right at that moment commit to saving a little from each paycheck until you save up enough for that ticket. Book the ticket far in advance, to give you time to save for the hotel and spending money. When you're ready, reserve your room. Then try to save at least $700-$1000 for spending money. And you're off! 

If you can't afford this adventure, consider a cruise. A cruise is an affordable way to get to an exotic locale without worrying about hotel costs and food. You just have to get to the cruise ship. The ship docks in each port of call and you will need some spending money to enjoy the shore excursions there. If you can't afford shore excursions, secure a safe taxi to go to a tourist safe beach or shopping area. But if you can't afford taxis you can stay on the ship and play in the pool, or take part in the many shipboard activities. 

So there you have it. There is no excuse for you not to see the world! Have fun- and be sure to let me know how it turns out. I love vacation pictures. :)

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