Before I left Australia a colleague and friend of mine, Louise, warned me against becoming blasé on my year-long journey around South America. Over the course of a long trip it is easy to lose your energy for the countless experiences that are on offer each and every single day. She explained that she had experienced similar feelings on her longer trips overseas.
Three months into my travels, I have to admit that there have been some occasions where I have felt the same way. Despite each day bringing new opportunities and new people, I have had days where I simply feel like sitting at the hostel all day – reading, writing or (and I like this one a lot) … sleeping.
My friends would probably tell me that I'm crazy – 'Wait, you're in Buenos Aires and you're sitting in your hostel all day!?' – but the truth is that sometimes being a vegetable for a day is exactly what you need to recharge your batteries.
I've justified these days by referring back to my original itinerary. Of course I've strayed from my initial plans several times and I don't regret a thing, but having a good idea of the places you definitely want to visit before you set off on your trip is a great way of keeping yourself in check. It also helps on the flip side, I've had a few occasions where I've learned about new places I could have visited on my travels but simply didn't have it planned. This has kept me honest with my budget.
In short, I've learned that it's ok to have a vacation from my vacation every now and then, as hard as it sounds! For anyone else planning a long trip, keep this in mind. Plan where you really don't want to miss and let the surprise side trips be a wonderful part of your travels as well.
Nos vemos and safe travels!
[Photo credit: Kike Barro]