Live to travel or travel to live? When we made our first trip to South America in 2008, we discovered that for traveling you don’t really need to have tons of money. Obviously, you need money to take off, but for what you don’t? All you need to do is make the decision: to pack and leave. That trip to South America left us many lessons. I think one of the most important was that: you can travel on a very low budget. Since then, the idea that for traveling we need a lot of money (one of the most frequent myths), is gone. I decided that I would travel more, whenever I could, in every time frame. I would create a trip from every excuse. I decided to cumulate memories and not just stuff, I decided to become a collector of stories, photographs, moments, and to declare myself a citizen of the world. (This sounds so easy).
I can share this with you: during those 5 months of travel, visiting 7 countries, we spent only $ 1250 dollars each in TOTAL! That’s $ 250 USD a month, which is pretty little compared to living in a city. Of course, we traveled with a tent, a little stove and pans to cooks: we slept in train stations, we traveled on trucks full of tomatoes, and sand trucks… Well, we were in our twenties! And there is no better sensation than the freedom you experience when you live life at your own pace and with your own rules … and yes, we were free. And we loved it. During that trip I discovered that a travel bug had bitten me and my cells became addicted to the adrenaline of the unexpected, to the serotonin and the stamina in my body every morning.
Travel as a way to experience life
Ah! wait for a second, I want to clarify that I’m talking about traveling as a way to experience life: from climbing volcanoes and riding on smelly busses, to carrying a heavy backpack with everything you need to live … I’m not talking about being a tourist, nor about “all inclusive” packages with breakfast hours and scheduled activities to make the tour and take pictures. No sir/ma’am. I talk about waking up in the middle of the morning mist on a lost mountain and to get out to find some wood to prepare your coffee. I talk about walking the less traveled paths, about getting lost and spend the night where it catches you, about sharpening your observation to see the colors of the world as if you were watching it with 3D glasses. I talk about jumping from bridges and feel that you get wings to fly.
That trip was a starting point for Mau and for me.
It stated the beginning of our relationship, but also because it marked traveling as our way of life. Living to travel, traveling to live. Travel as an invitation to adventure, to close your eyes and feel, to let go control and let life surprise you, and also to find our own reflection in others, to trust them and find beautiful people everywhere, because there is brotherhood and solidarity all around us.
Much has happened since that trip in 2008 … We have traveled through beaches, cities, and puddles (as the song says). We have learned to live and travel in a different way, a bit slower, seeking and finding well-being and purpose in each place, creating our lifestyle. What have we done particularly? Nothing special. We just have a lot of desire, determination, specially to not let ourselves be trapped by the magnetism of social standards with the salary, the car, the house, and the loan…
What do we do when we run out of money?
Same as you do! we work again and find more money. And of course, this is our way of life. It does not have to be everyone’s and, like everything, it has its pros and cons. Sometimes I say it sounds more romantic than it really is because, in the end, your worries and ours are the same: eating, sleeping, loving, finding the purpose of everything in life.
If you dream about traveling, if you feel something burning desire inside about exploring the world, I encourage you to take the risk, close your eyes and jump. Do not ask anyone, because nobody is going to live your life. Do it before it all becomes a memory of youth. Leave the fear, ask for a license at work, take the holidays and go on a long trip. Those are the ones that change your shape, expand your mind and shake your soul. The rest is not going anywhere. There will always be houses, cars, and vacancies available because is the system. The most beautiful thing about facing the fear of loss is that once you challenge it, it becomes smaller in every aspect of your life. You will be surprised about how things haven’t changed on your way back home and how much you have changed instead.
As Battuta says: Travelling will leave you speechless and then will turn you into a storyteller.
Don’t live a life, travel it!
If you liked this post share it! Help us to spread the love for traveling!