I had absolutely no interest in travel. Sure, I loved summer holidays to 5 star european resorts on the beach and I liked the odd bit of skiing. But in terms of actually seeing the world. I didn't care, I wasn't bothered.
Then, just days before Christmas 2013, I felt like my whole world had fallen apart...
No, nobody died, I didn’t try to kill myself, my parents were not getting a divorce.
I got dumped.
As ridiculous as it sounds, it tore my world apart. The next six months of my life can only be described as the worst ever. I cried everyday. I was so lost. I had no idea what I was going to do, or how I was going to live my life. Things were only made worse by the infrequent communication I had from my ex which left me wondering and feeling incredibly anxious as to what he actually wanted. I felt so sick everyday waiting for a text message that I couldn’t eat – and ended up losing about 2 stone in 3 months.
Eventually, I decided that I had to do something about it.
I had always been interested in photography and video. I’d had my own camera for a couple of years, and had made several videos at University and on holidays. My friend suggested that I go travelling with her as it could be a good opportunity to take some nice photos. I got onboard pretty quickly. I’d saved loads from being a hermit and not leaving my bedroom for around half a year, so why not…
On 13th June 2014 my friend and I began our adventure, and on a hazy Friday afternoon we arrived in Hong Kong and I couldn’t believe my eyes. I could not believe that I was actually there.
I can’t believe the things I have seen all around the world since that day. After whizzing down the East Coast of Australia and living on Pad Thai for a month in Thailand, my plans to get a real job when I got home had gone completely out of the window. I wanted to see the world. I had no worries, no commitments - and this was my opportunity. No one to hold me back at home, and not a care in the world.
I saved up, and six months later I was travelling around Central America and the Southern Sates of the USA. Those eight weeks away were even more life changing than my previous trip. The thing about travel, is that you meet the most amazing people. As bad as it sounds, they somehow make you forget all the people at home because you are all there for a similar reason. You want to see as much as you can in the little time you have on this planet. 2016 then brought trips to South America, Jordan, Switzerland and France.
Its easy on sad days to be sad. Its easy to stay inside, listen to sad music and not speak to anyone.
I sometimes sit and wonder what my life would have been like If I’d never travelled. It sends the biggest shiver down my back. I have seen the most incredible things in this world. I would never want to change that – or even the circumstances which provided the opportunities.
To think, not snorkelling in the Great Barrier Reef, or surfing at Cofts Harbour. Trekking for four days in the Thai jungle or partying with thousands on a beach in Koh Phangan. Drinking Rum on a sail boat in Belize and eating too many tacos in Guatemala … and Mexico alike. Biking over the Golden Gate Bridge and helicoptering above the Grand Canyon. Hot Air ballooning in Albuquerque and being a wizard for the day in Universal studios. Speed boating around Miami and watching a baseball game in D.C.
Without the break-up, I never would have done any of that.
I now live in Canada, and have done since January 2017. It’s not like one big holiday, and some days it’s hard being so far away from home. But writing this now has reminded me why I am here. So if people are in any doubt if travel can change anything about your life, then send them my way. Tell them to read my story. Most probably they wont ever believe that it is possible. But if you want change, and let it happen, then trust me. Travel can change your life forever.
I first travelled because I had a broken heart. But now, my heart would break if someone told me that I couldn’t travel.