Will you ever stop travelling?

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A friend asked me, “Will you ever stop travelling?” and without hesitation I answered, “No.”  Then he looked at me earnestly for an explanation.

Truth is, a few years ago I gave his question a lot of thought. I’d been perpetually moving for three years and decided to rent a 21 acre farm, unpack boxes and take a romantic relationship to the next level. But then I tacked up a world map on the wall and imagined all the places I wanted to go. Kahili Gibran wrote, “Your soul is oftentimes a battlefield, upon which your reason and your judgment wage war against your passion and your appetite.” My passion craves movement.

When my friend, Steve, was younger, like many of us, he moved around a lot. He played music, took photographs, and rode track horses as a jockey. Then ten years ago he bought a huge hand-built cabin on a creek, took in a bunch of rescue animals and hasn’t gone very far since. Now he feels stuck. Our conversation reminded me how important it is to make conscience decisions as we move through life.

While living at that farm I discovered the book Vagabonding and only pulled it off the shelf for a closer look because I had no idea what the word meant. Before dawn broke the next day; I’d read it cover to cover. In the last few pages Rolf Potts points out, “If travel truly is in the journey and not the destination, if travel really is an attitude of awareness and openness to new things, then any movement can be considered travel.” But he goes on to say, “…it’s important to remember that your vagabonding attitude is not something you can turn on and off when it’s convenient.” So as that map seemed to emanate from the wall and take on a pulse of its own; I decided to follow my passion and appetite for movement and keep travelling.


Posted by | Comments (7)  | March 22, 2012
Category: Vagabonding Life

7 Responses to “Will you ever stop travelling?”

  1. Rod Says:

    A bit of a painful post for me. I got married to a wonderful woman, and had two kids, and got stuck. It’s a great place to be stuck though… and yet…

  2. Amy "Gigi" Alexander Says:

    More than five years ago, I set out on a journey to see and do all of the things that scared me to death and I found them not scary in the least, but tremendously exciting. Traveling the world in a very instense, purposeful way, was one of those things I managed to do, and I was blessed to travel for a very extended period of time. I’m not sure I would do that again. That was what I needed at that time, that was my deep desire, and I felt a pull I cannot explain at that time. I found it a very centering experience and I found that who I became in that process of traveling extensively is someone that I really enjoy being. On my return, I wondered if I should keep traveling or not, and I have managed a major trip a year since then. But I also know, for myself, that the journey is within. I remember that I walked the Camino from Paris and had dreamt of doing that for so long; yet half way thru, I was aware that the journey is within..I did not need to keep walking. … While I miss the stimuli of constant travel, I now challenge myself to find that stimuli in everyday moments. I too met a special someone, and while I suppose I am “stuck”..it doesn’t feel like it. Maybe that’s because He’s from Argentina and I have to move there. So perhaps the vagabond within me is quiet because it knows adventure awaits. Very nice post. One of my favorite quotes of Gibran.

  3. DEK Says:

    What do we know of the lives of famous travelers? I cannot think off-hand of having read the biography or obituary of anyone who traveled perpetually. Whatever the rewards of the moment, viewed from the perspective of an entire life, is it a rewarding way to live? The travelers who come immediately to mind who lived long lives from Odysseus onward all seem to have traveled once and then found a home to settle. They may from time to time have gone traveling again, but it was from an established home.

    I have assumed that we travel when we are young in order that we can later appreciate a settled home, or make a home when we are younger so that it can be our base when we later go a’traveling.

    Many people, when they travel, seem to be surrounded by other travelers. When I travel I am aware that I am surrounded by settled people.