A friend and colleague recently shared with me a Huffington Post article best summarized by this quote:
“[Cornell University Ph.D in Gerontology Karl] Pillemer, summarizing the collective advice of these elders, said, “Travel is so rewarding that it should take precedence over other things younger people spend money on.””
Gerontology is the study of social, cognitive, etc. effects of aging (don’t worry, I had to look it up too). What Pillemer concluded from his study is, in layman’s terms, that elderly people commonly regret not doing more traveling in their younger days.
I’m not planning to feel that way when I’m old.
As you may have guessed from the extremely clever name of this blog, I’m taking our elders’ advice and going on a trip. I’m taking a backpack, a laptop and my money, and spending it on a life experience that may cost every penny I own. And that’s totally fine.
Maybe this whole thing is better defined as a “journey” since most “trips” have a return date and some semblance of an agenda.
After years of yearning, months of mental gymnastics and weeks of waiting, I finally bought a flight to go to Australia and explore a new continent with my favorite little sister. At some point in that process, I had my YOLO (for mom and dad, “YOLO” stands for “You Only Live Once” – please don’t start saying it) moment, or my “Eat, Pray, Love” moment as my manager so hilariously put it the other day.
I decided not to buy a return flight, and instead started planning part deux of what I hope to be a long, prosperous, inspiring journey.
As of now, I fly to Australia on March 17th, hop in a campervan with my sister and her best friend for a week in Tasmania, head to Singapore, Indonesia, and hopefully other Southeast Asian dreamlands in mid-April, and then way up North to Europe and Iceland a month after that.
There will be plenty more details to come, but now that I’ve notified my work, I wanted to get this out there.
The irresponsibility of my choice is blatant (who leaves a steady job with full benefits in the heart of San Francisco right when they’re coming off mom and dad’s insurance?). It’s not lost on me. But I’d be doing myself a disservice if I chose logic over adventure at this point in life.
Not that I have to explain the decision to anyone. Nearly every person I’ve told about my journey has been overwhelmingly excited for and supportive of me, and that’s an awesome feeling. It also gives me hope that a few of you will give this kind of journey a shot, too. Then maybe we’ll all avoid that sad discussion 50 years from now, lamenting our missed opportunities and lack of travel in our 20’s.
Anyway, I’m here to announce this trip, share this blog that will chronicle as much of the journey as possible, and to ask for anyone who has been to other countries (specifically Australia, SE Asia and Iceland…but I’m not picky) for all your wisdom, advice and recommendations.
You can follow this blog, and/or stay friends with me on Facebook, Twitter (@Jamblinman) and Instagram (@Jamblinman7), where most updates will be posted. If you’re feeling particularly friendly, add me on Viber, email (jeremydorn67 @ gmail . com) or Skype (jdwc77).
Even more adventurous? Come on out and visit me somewhere! I know a couple folks who are already considering it, and I can’t even express how excited I am about that.
It’s taken a lot of very difficult decisions, book-ending some relentless money-saving and secret-keeping. But I will finally be living the world-traveling dream for as long as possible – until my money, energy, or both fizzle out.
The journey officially begins on March 17th. Hopefully I’ll see you out there somewhere.