Published on March 28th, 20117
Travel’n McNuggets: an Antidote for Global Glut
Curiously, though I adore traveling to far away places, I’ve never been one to favor month after month of living on the lam. Nope, I learned early that long drawn-out RTW trips just weren’t for me. I’ve met far too many young RTW travelers who’ve been on the trail for 18, 12, even just 6 or 7 continuous months – who seem bored out of their skulls with their umpteenth destination. Utterly blasé about the dazzling sights and fascinating cultures that surround them. Waking at noon and lounging around hostel rooftops day after day chatting with fellow backpackers – too world-weary to appreciate the spectacular and unique attractions that await them just outside their hostel door. The symptoms are unmistakable. I call it Global Glut. And it’s perfectly understandable.
I mean, a person simply can’t keep taking in astounding experience after astonishing sight – world wonders to behold that most folks only read about in books – day after day after day. The human psyche simply can’t process it all with no let up. After awhile it all just blurs together. Apathy sets in and… you end up slumped on a lumpy hostel couch one day, languidly skimming a dog-eared discarded Harlequin novel – while the glory of the Nile or the majesty of the Himalayas lies (yawn) unseen outside your door.
Truly sad. Such a shame. For unless you happen to be some Microsoft millionaire, the chances are slim to none that you’ll ever be lucky enough to explore that unique corner of the globe again. The world is just too darn BIG and the wonders far too many, for any but the rare few to see it all – much less go back to hike that Himalayan trail that you missed whilst dozing with your nose in “Too Hard to Resist”.
Which is one of the reasons why I’m now planning on moving lock, stock ‘n barrel to Southeast Asia, to settle in for a goodly while. Alas I don’t have enough time (does anyone?) to explore all of the globe I want to see via 3-4 week biannual jaunts (which is all I might afford given spendy airfares to ‘n fro.) So living in Vietnam puts me nicely amid a wholly new corner of the globe from which to make short forays (a week to a month or so) into the delicious array of Vietnam’s nearby neighbors.
I’ve previously visited a smattering of China, Thailand, Bali, and once spent an idyllic day geocaching in Taipei, but now I’ll be able to further explore these, as well as Cambodia, Laos, Malaysia, the Philippines, and all of Indonesia. Shoot, once I’m tucked into that side of the globe, I might even end up shifting west to India and her enticing neighbors (Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan), and/or teaching EFL in China (and roaming perhaps up to Harbin for the legendary Ice Festival – an event long on my bucket list), or even dipping down to Australia and New Zealand.
In any case, by settling into a series of “base camps” on the other side of the Planet, I’m hoping to avoid Global Glut and instead savor the wonders of the world in McNugget-size bites – completely digesting each global Happy Meal before rushing off to yet another new border.