You discover you actually like to do other things that are available elsewhere. You become more interested in a different culture, maybe a new sport or activity, you find out you have a love for a certain kind of food. Rather than just sitting in the same Bar week in week out, you find a passion to trek some of the most scenic points available, you have a huge interest in surfing or scuba diving and you surprise yourself that you actually like Sushi.
You realize that where you were brought up, may never have been right for you, whatever the reason. You have enjoyed your time and you adore your friends and family, but sometimes when you go, that’s the universe pushing you. You are meant to leave; you were only a temp there despite growing up from childhood.
You realize who your true friends are. Your true friends will be happy for you, understand why you did it and love the fact you are flying the flag for your hometown. They want the stories, the experiences to live with them too. They want to tell their friends and they want advice on what to do if they decided to get up and go. The ones who keep quiet or become naysayers, is a blessing in disguise, you realize they are either spiteful, jealous or never really liked you anyway. It’s happened to several of us but sometimes its best too.
You become more attached with a family member or two than you thought possible. Whether its becoming closer to your mother, brother or even in contact with distant relatives at home or abroad, family sticks. You realise who they are in your life and forget about the small squabbles of everyday life and see them for their love to you and for yours to them.
It becomes scary to think about settling back at your hometown after realising there is so much more out there. Maybe your time has passed and you realise you’re ready for the City life, or the Beach life. Whatever it is, going back seems instinctively wrong.
Your mind and eyes open like you wouldn’t believe. You become more confident, self proclaimed, independent, cultured and at peace. You deal with different nations, situations, locations that only benefit you as a person, making you become easier to relate and talk to and more solution minded. It’s almost like a drug expanding your brain.
Freedom. You are free to see the unknown. It may be scary, it may be exhilarating, but whatever it is, you are happy.
You find that you become close with people you never thought you would back home in your circle of friends. In most close town societies, we are bound to hang with others similar to our present interests, not given chance to others. We all do it. When travelling we accept people for who they are and we find how we can relate with each other, respect each other and become friends with one another.
You realise that materials, home comforts and the same routine are really not worth more than experiences. Whether its waiting for a new video game to be released, a nice quiet night in bed with a cuppa or buying some new sneaks, these things are all temporary in life. Materials are temporary, experiences are permanent.
You use more universal words and less hometown slang. Accents are one of the most quirky wonderful sounds when travelling. People love yours, you love theirs, yet you both hate your own. American English creeps in and even accents can change depending on how difficult it is for people to understand you!
Facebook Photos don’t do what your experience justice. People back home think all you are doing is partying, yet you’ve spent alot more hours travelling, seeing sights and other things. The difference is people go trigger happy with picture taking when drinking.
You begin to write about your experiences, something you really didn’t do about your everyday life back home. You see more, you share more.
However good the food is whether you’re in Thailand or Australia, you always miss a good home cooked meal or something from your local takeaway.
You realise, no matter what, never judge someone. People are easy to assume at home, but when you meet people from all over the world, there is a more relaxed attitude. People understand easier, tend to not judge as quick or at all, and understand you have your reasons. Nothing is easy.
You tend to find yourself Googling your hometowns tourist attractions. You took them for granted before, but given you have probably seen so many of other places, you always have a look at what your hometowns come across like.
You are always attempting planning ahead in some respect. Because you are on the road, and the closest thing you had as a home is now in the past, everywhere is potentially temporary or permanent. You are not sure where you are going to be in 6 months. Plans change, continuously.
You wish your closest from home could see the sites and experience some of the things you are doing. Whether it’s a beautiful waterfall, a stunning temple or exotic food, you just wish for a moment you could show your family and friends that too.
Talking about your travels to people back home can be seen as your better than them. This isn’t the case, you just have the wish to share something new. Exploring and discovering new to you, who else are you going to tell?
People may think what your doing is ‘hippie like’ or ‘unstable’ yet you just realise its a bit of a myth. In America this is the case alot, but its not really true. People are taking risks and want to see more. There is nothing wrong with it, others are just different and don’t want commitment yet. There is no right or wrong.
You find yourself discussing with other travellers how your family and older family members always question your next move, when your back and generally don’t understand why you are doing it. We are in a generation where travel and social networking is at its peak. Its available to us. When they were our age, everything was about finding a job, a partner, house and family. It was foreign and insane to travel as much as is done nowadays.
No matter where you are, how you look, what you are doing, you’ll always remember where you from. We may change, but we never forget. We always will find someone who we can relate to where we are from. Whether its an accent, about football or just general way of life, we are never too far from someone like this.
The longer we are gone, the more we want. We mature more into seeing different things than the touristy destinations. We become adopted locals.
It never gets easier saying goodbye. To family, friends, saying bye on Skype or bye to a fellow traveller in a bar, we get used to this, but we do underestimate how tough it can be.