I’ve always had an itch to see Southeast Asia. I had pondered the idea of taking some time to visit the region after I graduated, but I certainly didn’t see this as a realistic option until I lived in Spain and backpacked parts of Europe. I was moved and inspired by my travels, and it became clear to me that my immediate post-college plans needed to be to see more of the world. I returned from my time in Spain and had a year left until I graduated. All I had to do was soak up my last year of college, save my money, and buy my plane ticket. Steady coastin’ from there, right? Wrong. The months leading up to my departure were rough. I was excited, scared shitless, and a billion other emotions at the same time. I’d purchased a one-way ticket to Bangkok and planned on being abroad solo for roughly a year. I’ve never had so many questions run through my head at once. There was now an official date when I’d have to say goodbye to my loved ones for quite some time. I’d be tossed into a pool of uncertainty far from home. I questioned myself as this reality approached, wondering if I were some sort of nutcase for doing this solo. Despite my pre-departure anxiety – which looking back seems entirely normal – my aspirations are fundamental to this trip and helped me past the discomfort. Ultimately, I want to satisfy the curiosity that I have about this world. There’s a thrill that we get from stepping outside our comfort zones, and I’m seeking to make that thrill a part of my everyday life by traveling alone to a part of the world that will challenge, inspire, and teach me.
I would have never dreamt to write something this personal on a public website, but what the hell. If this inspires just one person to step outside of their comfort zone and travel somewhere, I will have done my job.