What a ridiculous question, you ask! What better life could there possibly be than blathering incessantly about wild and crazy international adventuring the likes of which millions will enviously adore from afar and aspire to similar tales of wanderlustful whimsy and perhaps even seek groupie-like levels of obsessive fandom and fanfare?
But a mid-travel crisis is taking hold. As utterly compelling and adorable as these adventures can be, it’s not the one and only thing I’ve ever wanted to do with my existence. And launching a travel blog, which I’m well aware is far less glamorous and far more time consuming than its title would have you believe, can only push those other projects down the road.
Back in my 20s I would have jumped at the chance to be an indefinite digital nomad, wandering every corner of the Earth with nothing but my trusty backpack and occasional travel buddy to keep me company. But as much as I still idolize that unburdened existence, the passion burns less brightly than perhaps it used to. Not because I care any less than before, but I just have other things on my mind. The last time I traveled, I was barely there. I liked what I saw, but my mind was off in the clouds.
For many years I would avoid purchasing any item that required a truck to move. Sadly, that chapter is over. Now I want a home base. Not a big one, but one with a bed. And a sofa. Oh, and pots and pans. I was learning to cook! It was fun!
But perhaps the biggest issue is that being a travel writer isn’t the only thing I wanted to accomplish. I can’t help but wonder what it might be like to build up a readership of fans who enjoy listening to fun travel stories, only to jump ship to a new project and never look back. What then? Do I abandon a project into which I sunk years of my heart and soul? Do I keep it going, but as a backup project? Seems just a little sad. The voices in my head are telling me that if I’m going to do a travel blog, it had damned well be the best travel blog in the universe. And the idea of letting that die makes me sad.
Plus, there’s the money. I could jump ship and go somewhere cheap and live simply while building up an online income, but I’ve got a home now. I figured if I hunkered down and built things up for a while, I’d be fine. I could maintain a home base and do excursions of a few months at a time, taking random breaks when I needed them. And I could always sublet the place while I’m gone. But, of course, each of these options brings its own headaches, even if comparatively minor.
I guess the short version is that I wish I had gotten started half a decade ago. I’d have lived out my 20s on the road, whereas I ended up spending plenty of that time working. If I get things started now, maybe I’ll be proud of what I’ve accomplished in a few years, and I don’t want to look back and regret not doing it. But do I want to be a full-time travel blogger then? Will my middle-aged self still want to skate across the surface of the Earth with no end in sight, forever? It’s hard to say. It also means that other projects get kicked down the road, probably pretty far. Maybe forever.
So it’s weird to launch this thing while I’m already thinking of moving on. It’s a tough decision, and one I wish could have been made years ago, when it would have been my one and only.
We’ll see how it goes.