I am writing this in the least-adventurous circumstance one could think of. Wrapped up in a bath robe, just out the bath, laying in an unmade bed. But I got to thinking in the tub, as most of us do. I want to live. I mean I’m already doing the necessary actions of ‘living’; my heart is beating, I’m breathing and I’m sat here writing. But my little town in the South of England doesn’t make me feel alive, like I’m really living at all.
At the age of 18 I have been lucky enough to travel to three beautiful countries; Croatia, India and Spain. Now I’m sure you can relate to the sheer excitement that erupts in your body when you go away, even when it comes to the little things, like packing your bag, travelling to the airport and of course take-off. Whether the trip you take is a soul searching one, a luxury holiday or backpacking through countries you had never imagined venturing to, you will always learn and take something from it.
My first holiday was last summer, to the beautiful town of Dubrovnik, Croatia. At the age of seventeen you can imagine a girl’s holiday, especially as your first, was an absolute dream. No parents around, living at the beach, soaking up the sun and living with your best friends. The first thing I learnt from this holiday, may seem like a pretty obvious lesson, use sun cream! You may think because you don’t burn in the ‘English sun’ you’ll be okay but, you won’t. At least I was not that lucky, I spent the first day in total bliss taking in the Croatian sun and I finished the day (and the rest of the week) looking like a crabstick. So unless you like that whole half fire-truck red, half pasty as hell vibe REMEMBER TO FLIP!
India was a completely different culture, almost like a different world. It was truly enlightening, I realised how lucky I am to have my friends and family around me, that I have a roof over my head, access to a real education. I got to see one of the most beautiful sunsets and beaches I have ever seen in my life, I got to meet interesting and such polite people and I am forever grateful for that. I learnt that having ‘Delhi belly’ makes for a good laugh between you, your best friend and her Dad while your sat in a public toilet with no windows, no lights or toilet paper. I learnt about the friendship I share with Joss and how we see the world in such a similar way. It was ten days that I wouldn’t have wanted to share with anyone else and that I will never forget.
Spain taught me to live with people that I didn’t know so well, I learnt that most of my friends are incapable of washing up and that we all eat ridiculous amounts of food. I learnt that drunkenly running into a thorn bush with no shoes on, to hide from your neighbours isn’t the best of ideas. But what I did realise, it really is the people around you that make your time incredible and most importantly, I took two new friendships from this week that I will treasure forever.
I believe travelling opens you up to all kinds of people and situations, some that you would never expect. It helps you to grow as a person and see the world as a bigger place than just your life and your problems. If you are lucky enough to go away, enjoy every single moment of it, from the minute you book your tickets, to the moment your plane lands you home.
Go and live, go and learn.