Social icons

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Travel Love : Lessons and Realizations from the Big Trip


DSC_0664
Annapurna Sanctuary Trek, Nepal

Almost three months of traveling in six countries. Some were short stays,others were long. But all these countries have offered me so many adventures and unique experiences. But more than anything, the Big Trip had taught me so many important lessons and realizations that somehow changed and bettered my views of how I want to live my life, how I look at the world, race, faith, and religion, and made me realize how amazing the Creator is.

Here are some of them:

Poverty is Relative. 

DSC_1884

First off, let’s not make this technical. What I mean when I say relative is that the term ‘poor’ is so negative. Yes, people in India or Nepal are poor. Most of them don’t have access to education, to electricity, to technology. But they seem to be happy. They seem content. Some of the homeless and holy men in India have their faith as wealth. It’s what keeps them going. They don’t complain, not like us who live in the fast-paced big cities who complain over the small things. But those people, they don’t. The village people in Nepal have their mountains. The great mountains that provide everything for them. It seems enough for them. They have genuine smiles when I take their photos. 


We All Can Co-exist 

Golden Temple 12 
The Golden Temple, Amritsar, India

There are so many religions in India. Yes, there are minor conflicts. But they co-exist. Now, if we just respect everyone for whatever religion we’re practicing, the world will be a better and more peaceful place.  


Race, Color, Background, Job - They Don’t Matter 

Annapurna Sanctuary Trek Friends Annapurna Sanctuary Trek, Nepal

I can honestly say that I’ve met so many wonderful people from all over the world. Non-pretentious, genuine, nice people. Some of them I know I will still see and maybe travel with again in the future. You guys know who you are. ;) Yes, we talked about our backgrounds and jobs, but only in passing. The time we spent together were short encounters, but I know that when I reminisce about a certain moment when I was still traveling – they are the only people who can fully understand the emotions I felt that particular time. Shared experiences and the same passion for traveling are the two things that tighten the bond among us. 


The World is Seriously Huge and Magnificent 

Taj Mahal-4
Taj Mahal, India

India as a country in itself is huge, and it offers a variety of landscapes and experiences! Rough and dusty roads, desert, beaches, big cities, heritage and historical sites, and the Himalayas. Nepal! Oh Nepal! Mountains of rice terraces, wild rivers, snow-capped mountains, snow-covered ridges. Nepal is just beautiful. And it’s just a small part of the world. There’s still Europe, Africa, North and South America, and the rest of Asia. There’s just so much more to see, explore, and experience! 


You Don’t Need Much Material Things in Life 

Tolka, Annapurna Sanctuary Trek, Nepal

I lived off one 35L+ and another small backpack for almost three months. I even left shoes and clothes in some of the hotels we stayed at. I have dry hair but I’m okay. Now, here in our house in Baguio City, I look at how much clutter and unnecessary stuff I have. And I have to get rid of them soon because they’re taking too much space. 


That You need to Let Go of the Small Things 


Old Delhi, India
chaotic Old Delhi, India

Traveling is not all happy and stress-free especially in the countries I went to. There’s the endless honking, in-your-face touts, delayed buses, trains, flights, unreasonable and rude people, loooong sleeper bus rides, and a lot more stressful situations. But when you’re traveling you would eventually realize that everything is temporary. All these stressful situations will be over soon enough. So you just really have to be patient. And it’s very important to have an open mind. You will eventually realize that there are just some things that you need to let go. That they’re not worth your time and energy. You just have to let go and accept the facts and the reality. 


Travel is One of the Best Ways to Enjoy Life

CSC_0230
Annapurna Sanctuary Trek, Nepal

But most importantly, traveling saved me. Traveling made me realize how wonderful life is. Back when I was still working, I was for the most part angry, resentful, and stressed out. And waking up like this almost every single day was such a waste of life. That’s what I realized after the Big Trip. It’s so much better and refreshing to wake up every day (either sober or hangovered) with such a thirst for life, for new experiences. And what’s more wonderful, is when life/traveling surprises you with more exciting experiences and adventures. 

The Big Trip made me realize that life is indeed beautiful. That when you just make an effort to get out of your comfort zone, or a bad situation, there are more beautiful things waiting out there for you. You just have to make the first step. 


The Bigger Picture

DSC_0083
The Golden Temple, Amritsar, India

Just a few days after coming back home from the Big Trip, I was starting to become anxious and a bit depressed. I desperately missed being on the road. I began to realize that there are just certain emotions and experiences that only traveling can give me. I was worried that I might go back to the person I was before the Big Trip. I was just so carefree and happy when I was traveling. I was dreading the reality that I would have to work again soon. I was close to booking a flight somewhere just to give in to my desire of traveling again. Until one afternoon after reading some of my old blog entries and writing the post "Big Thank You and Updates". I asked myself why I was so worried about the future. Why was I rushing my life again? When I know and have come to realize that He always has the Bigger Picture in mind. There's a reason why the Big Trip has ended, at least for now. And that I should just enjoy the present and be thankful for the  best three months He has given me. And hope that whatever is His plan for me in 2012 will lead to another adventure, or will be another great year.