You ask why I wander.
I wander because I still love this world. No matter how often I grow weary of the horrors and injustices committed upon it, I still love this mote in the expanse of the heavens.
I love Nature, which is so awesome, vibrant, brutal, epic, majestic, and serene. The thundering roar of a waterfall, the craggy heights of mountain spires, the shifting sands of the deserts, the creaking serenity of a forest, the murky depths of the mysterious deeps; all of these things make me feel so powerless and fill me with awe.
I love the creatures — great and small — who scurry, flit, leap, and flop through their lives with the sole goals of survival and procreation. For the frailness of the natural biospheres they dwell in and the miracle of life and balance that sustains them.
I love the people; the varieties, cultures, and creeds which comprise humanity as a whole. How passions can run so deep and how every person, no matter their situation, can make the choice to be kind or cruel. The languages which divide and distance us, the common needs which bring us together. The way we compete and push and try to achieve so much, only to fail and get back up again.
However, as much as I love these things, they are not the main reason I travel.
I wander, selfishly, because of the way it makes me feel.
Traveling pushes me, harder than anything I have ever tried. It challenges me and goads me on with discomfort, pain, and sacrifice until I rise up, conquer whatever stands in my way, and astound myself when I break through. It exposes the deepest parts of me: the darkest, worst parts I have suppressed and the hidden strengths and compassion I had given up for lost. It slakes the voracious thirst my soul has for knowledge and adventure and still leaves me howling for more. It gives me purpose.
And so I wander.
I want to travel until my body falls to pieces. I want to climb mountains as my shoes disintegrate on my feet. I want to eat wonderful, exotic meals in faraway places until my teeth rot and fall out of my gums. I want to always, always remember how wonderful life is and how important it is to make a positive impact on the people around me. I want to die bent, broken, weary, and worn with pennies in my pocket and a barren bank account; yet slip into oblivion with a heart filled to the brim and a head full of memories.
I don’t want the things I was brought up to pursue. A family of my own, successful career, custom house, cushy retirement plan — those things just don’t hold any appeal for me. I live to experience this world by exploring it because the simple act of wandering gives me joy, peace, and strength. Maybe it will do the same for you. Or maybe it won’t; in which case, what does? Get out there and do it!