This week was our last week of work for at least a couple of months. Jess and I decided that living in Calgary for the past 10 months was enough, and that we needed some change and excitement in our lives.
Two months ago we bought a 2009 Dodge Grand Caravan (with stow and go seating) so we could have a vehicle that we can sleep in. We really enjoy camping, but on long road trips it really becomes frustrating to set up and take down a tent all the time, especially for those 1-night stays. We knew we would be going on a long road-trip, and that comfort was a necessity for us to truly enjoy the experience.
We recently watched the movie Expedition Happiness, and the traveling couple in the film had a difficult journey with some tough obstacles to overcome, especially since they turned a school bus into their home. Perhaps the toughest tribulation they (and their dog) face, is the homesickness that sets in due to the lack of routine and stability in their lives. We figure that if we go on our trip and continue to do things as usual, like daily yoga, cooking healthy meals, remembering to have private alone time, and making our new “home” as cozy as possible, we should be able to skip out on the struggles that Expedition Happiness endured.
What it really comes down to is figuring out what kind of travel is your kind of travel. Do you require hotels/hostels, or are you fine with camping? Do you like driving every day, or do you want to settle in one place for a while? Do you like to plan ahead and pre-book everything, do you fly by the seat of your pants, or do you require a mix of spontaneity and planned destinations? What resources can make your life easier, and what obstacles do you want to tackle on your own without the use of technology?
There’s no wrong way to travel, and there’s no best way to travel; everyone is different and your experience can be very different from someone else’s who is doing the exact same trip. It’s great to have expectations so you know what you desire from your travel, but it’s also great to be open minded, so when things don’t happen as you anticipated, you can openly accept the outcomes without feeling like you’ve missed out on something you wanted. Things will not always go to plan, but you will learn your own levels (and your partner’s) and you’ll know when and how things should be done to keep you happy.
The main struggle for Jess and I while we are traveling, is becoming hangry. A hangry person then becomes stressed out, then becomes easily agitated, and then both people suffer because of that tension in the vehicle. We figured this out, and now we meal plan a lot better so neither of us gets to that stage of being so ravenous we want to bite each others’ heads off. It sounds childish, but hunger has been the main source of bickering between us traveling… and at home.
Since we have been back from New Zealand, I have reconnected with friends and family and Jess has gotten to know the people closest to me. We both got awesome career experience in our respective fields, and we got to see what my home has to offer. We saved up some money, and now we are comfortable leaving on a new thrill. We are satisfied with our time here in Calgary, and now we want to fill our cups until we are overflowing once again.
Thanks to everyone who supports us and wishes us all the best. It would be way harder to leave home without all the love behind us.
We will be back again to visit, but I do not know exactly when, or why, but there always is a “how” that makes it possible. We plan to conclude our USA trip by ending up in Eastern Canada, so we can live a new life, before we leave that one and move on to the next adventure after that. Life should always be an adventure – in your mind, in a car, on a plane, in your career, with your relationships, whatever it needs to be, just keep yourself stimulated! If you’re in a state of mind where you don’t feel energized by life anymore, make a goal, set a date to obtain that goal, then work your ass off to make that change. Too easy, right?
Colin + Jess