Not seeing it all is okay for me

Today marks 600 days of living outside of the box. Over two years ago, I had this grand idea to travel the world and to see and experience as many things as possible. The more research I did, the more I felt I had to see and the longer I knew this lifestyle would exist in my life. For the first few months of my trip, it all felt like a dream. I was city hopping every few days (or everyday), going from village to village, going to every world heritage cultural site, and meeting an endless amount of people. The hardest part of my day was figuring out what to eat from the endless selection in every country. It was exactly what I wanted… or so I thought.

About six months into my trip I started to feel more laid back. I started to not really care about what I was skipping out on as I passed by certain places. I do not however feel what I’m seeing to be any less amazing than before. I’m always appreciative and lucky for what I do but everything does start to blend in as if I’d been living like this my whole life. The world suddenly feels smaller yet bigger. Nothing feels inaccessible to travel to and I know of so many more places to go to. I’m confusing myself because although I want to see more, I feel too relaxed to actually do it. The world in my eyes has become overwhelmingly too big to see it all. I’m no longer caring about how many places I’ve been to, the amount of stamps, or where I actually end up most of the time. All I want is to be on the road itself.

Mike in Uruguay

The shift in attitude, I think, became from me being more accepting of the larger world. Before leaving, I had no idea there was so much. It’s physically impossible to literally travel the whole world. I’ll always be that minimalist backpacker but I don’t feel like I MUST see it all or have a list of any kind. There is no end date so what’s the rush? I’m still living for every moment but I don’t feel I need to rush for every moment because then it would defeat the purpose of living for every moment. I feel relaxed that the world has a lot to offer. As long as I’m experiencing something new everyday, I’m perfectly satisfied with where my travels take me.

I talk as if the world is small knowing it’s big by categorizing by continent. “I want to go to Central America next year.” instead of saying “I want to go to Costa Rica next year.” It gives me room to take things as they happen landing in places I didn’t know existed keeping everything in suspense and surprise.

I think what’s most important for me is the actual lifestyle of a traveler itself. I can at any moment go where I want to go, stay as I please, work anywhere in the world, live in the moment, and BE myself.

  • http://www.theplanetd.com/ Dave and Deb

    Good for you. We too feel slower in our travels. We used to feel the need to keep moving on to keep seeing more and more, but now we suddenly feel like moving slow. A year ago we couldn’t slow down, now we can’t speed up. Congrats on 600 days on the road.

  • http://www.theplanetd.com/ Dave and Deb

    Good for you. We too feel slower in our travels. We used to feel the need to keep moving on to keep seeing more and more, but now we suddenly feel like moving slow. A year ago we couldn’t slow down, now we can’t speed up. Congrats on 600 days on the road.

  • tomschinablog

    quality over quantity, great philosophy!

  • tomschinablog

    quality over quantity, great philosophy!

  • tomschinablog

    cool pic by the way… really metaphorical

  • tomschinablog

    cool pic by the way… really metaphorical

  • http://www.theaussienomad.com Chris

    I like this “As long as I’m experiencing something new everyday, I’m perfectly satisfied with where my travels take me.” as that’s exactly how I feel about travel. I don’t care how fast or slow I go, its about seeing and doing not racing to the finish line.

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Right on!

  • http://www.theaussienomad.com Chris

    I like this “As long as I’m experiencing something new everyday, I’m perfectly satisfied with where my travels take me.” as that’s exactly how I feel about travel. I don’t care how fast or slow I go, its about seeing and doing not racing to the finish line.

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Right on!

  • http://portageur.ca/ Preston Ciere

    You’re so right. If you’re intent is to go out and see what’s out there, take the time to actually see it. This is a great reminder that we all need every now and then, because it is too easy to get caught up on goals and schedules rather than why you’re out there in the first place.

  • http://twitter.com/portageur_ca Preston Ciere

    You’re so right. If you’re intent is to go out and see what’s out there, take the time to actually see it. This is a great reminder that we all need every now and then, because it is too easy to get caught up on goals and schedules rather than why you’re out there in the first place.

  • camorose

    What a great attitude! Having big plans makes it much easier to be flexible.

  • camorose

    What a great attitude! Having big plans makes it much easier to be flexible.

  • http://twitter.com/GoSeeWrite Michael Hodson

    good attitude — glad you are still having a blast out there. As am I.

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Good stuff. Travel on!

  • http://twitter.com/GoSeeWrite Michael Hodson

    good attitude — glad you are still having a blast out there. As am I.

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Good stuff. Travel on!

  • backpackingmatt

    Congrats on 600 days. I feel you, completely. I was at a NYE party in Chicago and continued to explain my life and work situation to people who asked. They couldn’t believe it and were extremely jealous. What kept hitting me is how terrified was to be where they were at, right now. More or less – stuck. Me? I can pack my pack and take off whenever I choose.

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Ah yes. The “I wish I could do that” quote. Famous words I hear often.

  • backpackingmatt

    Congrats on 600 days. I feel you, completely. I was at a NYE party in Chicago and continued to explain my life and work situation to people who asked. They couldn’t believe it and were extremely jealous. What kept hitting me is how terrified was to be where they were at, right now. More or less – stuck. Me? I can pack my pack and take off whenever I choose.

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Ah yes. The “I wish I could do that” quote. Famous words I hear often.

  • http://www.MyBeautifulAdventures.com/ Andi Perullo

    Happy 2011!!!!! I wish you nothing but beautiful adventures. :)

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Thhankk youu! Happy New Year to you as well :)

  • http://www.MyBeautifulAdventures.com/ Andi Perullo

    Happy 2011!!!!! I wish you nothing but beautiful adventures. :)

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Thhankk youu! Happy New Year to you as well :)

  • Ericmcgraw4

    I remember that young/Quixotic Michael Tieso on the Great Wall of China in May 2009…amazed to see you’re still doing it and taking it all in. Well done and continue enjoying the moments as they come. Happy 2011!

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Eric! Ah thanks man. I had just started traveling when we met. :) Happy New Year!

  • Ericmcgraw4

    I remember that young/Quixotic Michael Tieso on the Great Wall of China in May 2009…amazed to see you’re still doing it and taking it all in. Well done and continue enjoying the moments as they come. Happy 2011!

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Eric! Ah thanks man. I had just started traveling when we met. :) Happy New Year!

  • Alyssa

    Sounds like you’re are having a blast! I’ve never done anything like that before but I’ve always wanted to. But how do you afford it? Have you saved up for this or do you just use everything you have for these experiences?

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Thanks! I saved up, sold things, teaching English part time in China, and making a little internet profit. It all adds up making it enough to travel for awhile.

  • Alyssa

    Sounds like you’re are having a blast! I’ve never done anything like that before but I’ve always wanted to. But how do you afford it? Have you saved up for this or do you just use everything you have for these experiences?

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Thanks! I saved up, sold things, teaching English part time in China, and making a little internet profit. It all adds up making it enough to travel for awhile.

  • http://fastforwardacademy.com/index-page-irs-enrolled-agent-exam-course.htm enrolled agent course

    Its been almost a year and two months for me since I left the life inside the cubicle and I couldn’t be any happier. I’m hoping that I can travel to more places this year, learn new things and meet new friends. I don’t think I would ever want to come back on a 9-5 job.

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Same here. I don’t think I could ever go back to that type of job. I’m enjoying life.

  • http://fastforwardacademy.com/index-page-irs-enrolled-agent-exam-course.htm enrolled agent course

    Its been almost a year and two months for me since I left the life inside the cubicle and I couldn’t be any happier. I’m hoping that I can travel to more places this year, learn new things and meet new friends. I don’t think I would ever want to come back on a 9-5 job.

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Same here. I don’t think I could ever go back to that type of job. I’m enjoying life.

  • http://texascity.texas-hotels-us.com Texas City Hotels

    “All I want is to be on the road itself.” -> since you’ve mentioned that, I recommend “On the road”, and amazing song performed by Byron, not many people know of it, but it’s totally worth it. You can find it on utube, perhaps it will add an extra meaning to your trips:)

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Interesting. I’ll check it out. Thanks!

  • http://texascity.texas-hotels-us.com Texas City Hotels

    “All I want is to be on the road itself.” -> since you’ve mentioned that, I recommend “On the road”, and amazing song performed by Byron, not many people know of it, but it’s totally worth it. You can find it on utube, perhaps it will add an extra meaning to your trips:)

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Interesting. I’ll check it out. Thanks!

  • http://roymarvelous.com roy | roymarvelous.com

    Great attitude Michael. Since working on cruise ships, I’ve started appreciating “slow travel” more as well. When we try to see everything, we see nothing well.

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Thanks!
      Must be interesting working on a cruise ship. Where does your ship go to?

      • http://roymarvelous.com roy | roymarvelous.com

        Right now around the Caribbean, but going to South America in 7 weeks, woohoo!

  • http://roymarvelous.com roy | roymarvelous.com

    Great attitude Michael. Since working on cruise ships, I’ve started appreciating “slow travel” more as well. When we try to see everything, we see nothing well.

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Thanks!
      Must be interesting working on a cruise ship. Where does your ship go to?

      • http://roymarvelous.com roy | roymarvelous.com

        Right now around the Caribbean, but going to South America in 7 weeks, woohoo!

  • http://www.theroamantics.com Lorna – the roamantics

    that’s beautiful michael! good for you for settling in and enjoying the moment instead of being goal-focused just for the sake of! it’s that old cliche “it’s the journey not the destination” right? congrats on realizing your dream…pretty incredible :)

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Thanks! Though cliche, it’s true.

  • http://www.theroamantics.com Lorna – the roamantics

    that’s beautiful michael! good for you for settling in and enjoying the moment instead of being goal-focused just for the sake of! it’s that old cliche “it’s the journey not the destination” right? congrats on realizing your dream…pretty incredible :)

    • http://artofadventuring.com/ Michael

      Thanks! Though cliche, it’s true.