Traveling is like flirting with life. It’s like saying, ‘I would stay and love you, but I have to go; this is my station.” — Lisa St. Aubin de Teran
Staying put is the hardest part. In the past, when I’ve returned home after an extended stint overseas, I spend the first month or two caught up in seeing old friends, visiting my family, and indulging in all the culinary delights I missed while away. Then a funny thing happens: I get bored. I become listless and can never seem to get rid of that burning urge to get back on the road. Since October 2011, I haven’t been home for more than 4 months at a time.
A lot of people assume it’s a stage I’m going through. “You’ll grow out of it.” or “One of these days you’ll get a real job and settle down.” are the phrases used. I smile, shrug, and keep dreaming of the next place.
As Robert Louis Stevenson said, ‘The great affair is to move’. Some people have a desire to nest, to raise a family, to… the list goes on. Others want the opposite: freedom from obligation. For the time being, that’s me.
Who knows, maybe someday I’ll change; it’s certainly happened before. When that day comes, I’ll need to have a good sit-down and figure my situation out, but for now, this series of landscapes viewed through the windows of planes, trains, and dodgy taxis will be my constant.
I’m back in South Korea now, a country I love and consider my second home. I’ve been enjoying seeing my friends, making new ones, and eating all of the amazing foods I missed. But I won’t stay.
In just a month, I’ll be staring out a plane window with a head full of memories and gut tensed in anticipation for the next stage of my journey: the Philippines. Even though I love these places I see, I must leave — they are merely rest stops on my journey.
How about you? Do you prefer staying in one place, or do you get restless as well? Answer in the comments below!