I have been pondering on this question a lot since last year. With so many long trips I went through this year alone, the questioning may come as a surprise. Looking back to my picture folders, it even looks like I travel at least once a month since January 2013! So much traveling with such a heavy heart, huh?
But, really, can I?
Can I stop longing for traveling even with so much traveling done? This past year, I asked myself this question whenever I traveled. For several months the answer had been: I will come back home and settle down. For the sake of my future (ahem!), I promised to settle down (but should I?). But then, several weeks later (days even!)–as I scrolled down pictures after pictures that I took when traveling, as the time I spent with the people I was with or met on the road played at the back of my mind–the pull to pack my bag and just go wherever comes and hits me stronger than before.
‘Can I stop longing for traveling?’ becomes an unproductive question. I should say I come to this realization quite late. Honestly, not traveling at all is not the answer; not thinking about traveling is also not the answer. After a long contemplation (I have this writing on my draft box for half a year already) and self-debate (you might be surprised to find how much time I spend on self-debate activity every single day), it’s not about the longing or stopping the longing that I should wonder.
It should be about what good things I can bring to other people’s lives when I travel, and then after I’m home again, I should ask myself what lessons I have learned from the last trip that made me a better person than yesterday. All the while, I should and must keep wondering about ‘next trip’.
It’s not about diligently ticking off the bucket-list boxes–I did this, I hiked this, I found this, I ate this–but what good things I can offer, or do, when or after traveling. After all, traveling had done and offered good things to me–it opens my eyes and warms my heart every single time; traveling humanizes me, somewhat. Thus, it’s time to give back and no more wondering on an unproductive question.
“More good things to think and do in the nearest future!” is the early resolution, for 2016 will be a new fun and bold year! I am looking forward to it!