Anatomy of an Imaginary Road Trip
It creepily crawls into your brain without you
even realizing it until its too late.
You are unsuspectingly watching a movie, where you see some good-looking actors playing friends and going on a road trip of their lifetime. Gorgeous landscapes, fun and frolic, laughter, tears, pretty people falling in love with other pretty people, and life-changing epiphanies inundate your brain all in a matter of a couple of hours. “Wanderlust” has infected you and you find your hand moving towards your phone. On your phone, there are groups with names similar to “College FRNDZ”, “School buddies”, “BFFs for life”. Come on, don’t pretend you do not know what I am talking about. You open a group, and “wanderlust” decides to spread trough your phone to your friends. It begins with the message, “Hey, let us go Goa this long weekend yaar. Let's have fun yaar. Life too boring yaar. Everything sucks yaar. Lets party yaar.”
Your unaware friends going about their routine check that message and catch “wanderlust” from you, the patient zero. You get a bunch of replies from group members about how awesome your suggestion is. Your suggestion gets so much appreciation as if you are the first in the world to ever think of such a beautiful thing. Your friends start planning on another level. Things are getting discussed, accepted, rejected, applauded, and ridiculed all in the span of a day or a couple of days since you last mentioned the idea of going on a trip. You feel like a genius leader who came up with such an innovative idea. Your group is brimming with new energy and hope for a memorable weekend getaway.
And then without you realizing, the inevitable happens. Your friends, who were possessed by “wanderlust” start falling like dominoes. It starts with one friend backing out of the trip, and then one after the other the entire group backs out. Their excuses feel like stabs to you. After all, you were that genius leader who came up with the idea of the century and your friends a.k.a. followers had agreed to follow your lead. In the end, when you and that “friend” you do not like enough are the only ones braving the effects of anti-wanderlust, you give up on the idea of a memorable trip that the movie was teasing you with. You go back to your bed and decide to do nothing for many more weekends to come.
What would have happened if you and your friends had gone on that road trip? Let me assure you it won’t be as picturesque and perfect as you saw in the movie or you dreamt of. Most of the things would turn out to be different than you imagined. Minor inconveniences would occur. No matter how prepared you are, you would still face some unexpected events. In short, your trip will be a mixed bag of fond memories and laughable glitches. All I want to say is just TRAVEL. I am not recommending you to quit your jobs and go backpacking all around the world (not that it won’t be cool). There need not be a reason or a way to travel. Travel to get free or to get captivated. Travel extravagantly or on a budget. Travel alone or with your loved ones. Travel locally or internationally. Travel to get lost or to find yourself. Travel to feel young again or to grow up. Whatever your reasons are, travel because the world has so much to offer and we have so little time. As Ibn Battuta, the famous Moroccan traveler once said, “Traveling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller.” The world is waiting for your stories. Are you ready to create them?