I read a post this morning about how not everyone has the ability to travel. Not just because people deem it to be ‘expensive’ but that the ability to put your life on pause and leave everything just isn’t a viable option for some people. We don’t all have the privilege to pick up sticks and move when and where we please. Life comes with a plethora or responsibilities be it your job, children, family or even animals. The list is endless.
I have read endless posts about people ‘living the dream’ and ‘leaving their 9-5 corporate job to travel the world’ which is fantastic. Most of them claiming they started with nothing and worked their way to the top, attempting to give people the hope that they can do it to. The only problem with this is that not everyone can do this. Plummeting yourself in debt with loans or working yourself to the bone to create valuable content for your online platform while on the road isn’t an option for some people, no matter what way you swing it.
We take things like travelling completely for granted. I, personally, love taking short city breaks when I can and think nothing of it. If there is a festival or concert I want to see I will price flights to England, or even further afield. I have travelled just for this reason in the past, and will again in the future no doubt. It’s these little trips where I hop on a plane and go somewhere new that I take for granted – as this just is not a possibility for so many people.
I am privileged because I have no family to look after, that I have cats who I can get other people to mind while I am away (for free – I’m luckier again!), that I live right beside an airport and have a job that will accommodate me for days that I wish to take off. I would actually consider money to be the biggest issue for me when it comes to travelling, and even that doesn’t stop me at the best of times because I know some cuts on frivolous spending for awhile will put me back on track. When my friends were taken on holidays when we were younger every year and I only got to go every ‘few’ years I thought the woes of the world were upon me. This is such an ignorant and privileged outlook on life when there are children in the world being forced out of their homes due to war and all they want is to stay at home, those who are in awful living conditions around the world and will never get to experience more than their home town, those who have an illness so bad it makes travelling impossible, the list just goes on and on.
I write this as I’m about to take a half day at work to drive 10 minutes to the airport and hop on a plane to Lisbon for a long weekend. A huge privilege which I don’t even take the time to consider. I want to travel the world, I want to be selfish in my younger years and take care of myself and myself only. I want to visit every continent, explore the places that are hard to get to, try new things and new experiences. If I don’t visit a new place in more than three months I get itchy feet and feel like I’m ‘wasting time’ and I will want to book somewhere new to explore. And I am allowed to want, as is everyone. The difference between myself and other people is I will have the ability to do these things in the future – with little to no obstacles in my way. This, is privilege.