Today I leave for Asia and I realized it’ll be the longest I’ve ever been away from Toronto since my trip to Brazil almost 10 years ago. One month is short by backpacking standards but when you’re use to the standard 2-week vacation allotment of full-time employment, a one month trip practically feels like a gap year.
While in bed one night, a time when my brain is most active, I felt this sudden urgency to ditch my loose, go with the flow plan. I couldn’t waste any time there since who knows when I’ll be able to jet around for this long again. I came up with an ambitious list of four countries I was going to make a point on visiting–one country for each week I’ll be in Asia for. I spent the next morning researching the top cities within each country and mapped a route out based on transportation options. I went from having no itinerary to this tactical plan that had me jumping from city to city, staying no more than two days in one place.
It was exhausting to look at. Hell, it was exhausting just putting it together. It read like I was out to check boxes, that I was operating on a timer and I needed to squeeze in as much as I could before time ran up. That’s definitely not the experience I’m looking for on my extended SEA trip.
To be honest that’s how I’ve always planned my trips. When you only have two weeks somewhere, you want to squeeze as much out of it as possible. And that’s why I come back from every trip feeling depleted because I literally don’t stop when I’m there. Since Brazil I haven’t stayed in one city for more than three nights. I think this is an opportunity to slow it down.
So no more checking the boxes or detailed itineraries by the hour. Just me doing what I feel like, when I feel like, where I feel like.
See you guys in Bali!