An Open Letter to a Dysfunctional Wanderlust

Hello, My Love.

Did I catch you at a bad time? Are you daydreaming about that tropical beach getaway again… the one that you should have gone to 5 SUMMERS AGO? Or maybe it’s that road trip with your friends that you missed last May that you’re obsessing about this time. You knew putting that off was a bad idea. You were looking forward to that trip to Lucban all month long and even troubled yourself to prepare an itinerary. But no, you bailed on your travel buddies the last minute.

At the Pahiyas Festival, Lucban, Quezon
At the Pahiyas Festival, Lucban, Quezon

You know what, I will not even rub it in. I will not tell you how exhilarating it was to jump off the cliff at Ariel’s Point and plunge into cool turquoise waters. Or how a relaxing full-body massage by the beach at the setting of the sun ruined all other massages for me after that. Don’t get me started on the mind-blowingly delectable local food offerings we devoured during the Pahiyas Festival (I could eat Pancit Habhab all day, everyday). I sent out a record-breaking number of tweets gushing about what I had for lunch that day. Nope, I will not even go there.

Not for the faint of heart. Photo taken from Ariel's Point website.
Not for the faint of heart. Photo Credits: Ariel’s Point

But I don’t want to be so hard on you. I shouldn’t be very quick to judge because I were you not so long ago. I knew in my heart that I long to travel and experience the world but for some insane reason, I just did not go. I came up with all sorts of excuses… I don’t have the time or I am too tired or I don’t have enough saved up or It might not be worth my while. I could pick and choose from all possible excuses and know that I have used them at some point. I find it quite contradicting to be perfectly honest but silly as it may seem, it was my situation for a very long time… longer than I cared to admit. I wanted to travel but I stayed in one place.

For so long, I hid my wanderlust behind thick curtains and lived off the exciting trips of other people. I read travel blogs, watched lifestyle shows and rummaged through Facebook photos of my friends going on expeditions all around the world and wonder about the fun they had. The worse was when I would go on a sadistic fit and plan an entire trip only to cancel it because… reasons. It went on for so long that it took out the curiosity that I used to have for this lovely planet.

The good news is that this is not totally irreversible. Wanderlust is like glowing embers. The slightest gush of air can easily turn a spark into a blazing fire. The smallest of efforts, so long as it is planned according to your liking, will lead to something greater.

Do this now, will you. Take baby steps by clearing out an entire day to go on a trip to a nearby tourist spot, somewhere that you know you will enjoy and ideally not more than an hour or two away from you. My default is Tagaytay. It’s especially picturesque during sunny days when the greens, the yellows and the pinks at Sonya’s Garden are so intense. The local foodscapes would almost always make you want to be in places so be sure to visit a tried and tested restaurant or two. Save the unfamiliar hole-in-the-wall for another day. Plan to do an activity besides just drive by and eat. Visit a heritage site or spend some time taking pictures of people bustling their way around. If this trip does not invigorate you enough, go on another… and another… and another… and another… until it does. These sampling portions are aimed at preparing you for your next big serving of travel escapades.

Postcard worthy pathway at Sonya's Garden
Postcard worthy pathway at Sonya’s Garden

So you see, our case isn’t really hopeless. All we have to do is to embrace our inner wanderlust and empower ourselves to go on that trip. Screw the reasons… just go already. And when you go, go with all your heart.

XOXO,

A Recovering Dysfunctional Wanderlust

Not all those who wander are lost. - J.R.R. Tolkien
Not all those who wander are lost. – J.R.R. Tolkien
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