In an hour, I will put my laptop and cell phone in a box, not to be touched for at least 3 months. This will likely be the last time in my life that I will have no way to be reached and zero responsibility. The more research I do, the more excited I get. However, I find it hard to think about my mindset for this trip. The fast paced environment of San Francisco contrasts with the laid back lifestyle of the travelling community. I know that in 3 days I wont have a care in the world, but it is hard to actualize that feeling considering that I just finished my 9-5 job about 12 hours ago.
As I prepare to catch a plane in 7 hours, I reflect on my 6 month journey in 2005 to Fiji, Australia, and 9 countries in Western Europe. I would consider this one of the highlights of my life, and have been outspoken about buying an around the world plane ticket instead of studying abroad. Instead of being locked down in 1 city, drunkenly recreating freshmen year, I had time to immerse myself in cultures from all over the world, not just spend a weekend here or there. While I will be in slightly more impoverished areas than Aussie or Europe, many of the fundamentals of the trip will be similar:
I will explore other cultures, and do my best to learn how other people in the world live
I will bring a little bit of my culture to the people I meet
The backpacking community is really a unique culture. Its a very open, liberal culture where everyone looks out for everyone else. My dad offered me a free stay using credit card points. I told him I would rather stay in a $4/night hostel to be around backpackers
This picture has 2 points. First, there is no place I would rather be than on that boat. The ability to have total freedom over everything I do will put me in the travellers mindset
Second, look at my clothing in the above pics. I am only bringing 5 shirts for 100 days, do the math.
And finally, the last tenent: Facial hair
Here are some of the higlights of this upcoming trip:
2/11 - Fly into Ho Chi Minh, and meet my college roommate, Andrew
2/27-3/12 Meet my high school friend, Jaycie, and explore Hanoi, Halong Bay and the jungle region
3-20 - Tube down the river in Vang Vieng
4/9 - Full Moon party in Ko Phan Gnag. Hopefully a few of my San Francisco roommates will spend a few weeks island hopping with me.
5/11 - 5/16 - Fly from Cambodia to Japan for a few days, then back to SF (only if i'm ready to come back)