The truth to travel life is that it’s not so different than non-travel life. As someone who travels frequently, I’m guilty of the “humblebrag” post depicting a fancy cocktail overlooking a beach, mountain, [insert exotic scenery here]. But hey, I’m from Chicago. I’m not used to mountains and palm trees! But behind that fancy cocktail [spoiler alert] I'm eating hummus and pasta for a week. Not really photo worthy. I still worry about money, paying taxes and bills, doing laundry, etc. Finding a place to get a haircut becomes more challenging not knowing the language or where to go. Maybe I get a good story out of it or maybe I’m nearly bald for a week.
I made travel my priority, much like professionals make career goals. I choose this travel lifestyle because it allows me to see more, experience more, and connect more with the people and places in this world at a faster pace than if I was based in one place. Or at least at this point in my life I feel this way. I believe in embracing “now”. I still try to keep in touch with those close with me even if I can’t be with them physically. Plus, texting my grandma emojis isn’t an option. She uses her microwave a helluva lot more than her cell. I have also been very fortunate that friends and family have traveled across the world to meet me so we can travel together.
I’m not rich. I’ve never inherited a huge sum of money or won the lottery. Nobody sponsors me to do what I do. But none of that’s required to explore what surrounds us. I do look for promo codes, research travel hacks, and use credit cards with reward points. Part of the reason I started Nomad and Camera was to share travel tips and tricks, as well as travel realities.
Yet, travel somehow gets mixed up with fantasy-like imagery. The reality is most people aren’t staying at 5-star hotels or sitting first class. The beauty in travel is discovering the "ordinary" that differs from country to country, town to town. The local produce, the accent, the architecture... But truthfully, the things that bring people together are universal. The best part is travel can be a very tangible, affordable thing that leaves you with some intangible, priceless memories and experiences.