Wednesday, June 8, 2011

I want to travel around the world

I have had this intense need to see the world.

Most people, to my knowledge, talk about seeing the world after they retire. Most people have a certain eight point life plan set out for them:

1. Go to school.
2. Get a good job.
3. Get married.
4. Buy a house.
5. Have kids.
6. Get those kids out of the house and happy in their own lives.
7. Retire.
8. Live the life they've always wanted.

My father is part of the baby boomer generation. I think his life has for the most part followed the eight point list, though he hasn't retired yet, and who knows if the lifestyle he is going to have during retirement is the one he's always wanted. My father has mentioned to me that he felt like he spent a lot of time and energy working in order to acquire stuff, and in turn working to acquire bigger homes to hold all that stuff.

I don't want that life.

I actually don't think that that kind of life is possible for me, even if I did want it. I will probably never earn the kind of money my father is earning right now. The news is filled with stories about how people who graduated during the recession, like I did, may need decades to recoup their losses in income, if they ever do. Real income has not risen with inflation, and many costs, like housing and medical care, have vastly outpaced inflation, much less wage increases. Working hard through college is supposed to get you a good job, and working hard at that job is supposed to get you a comfortable income to raise a family on and later on retirement. It doesn't work like that anymore. You can't really trust your employer to promote you, or even to keep your current job. People don't get pensions anymore.

The eight point plan isn't going to work for me. It's a good thing I'm not particularly interested in it.

Which brings me back to the beginning of this post: Travel.

It's one of the main things I want to do. But I have a lot of things in my life that are directly opposed to a vagabond life. I have pets, I have a mortgage, I have student loans. I don't have a high income.

But I think those obstacles aren't the end of the road.

I found a blog, written by someone who is living the kind of life I want. It's called AlmostFearless. She has a series called 30 Ways in 30 Days to Redesign your Life and Travel the World. I'm going to work through the series here, and see what I can do to change my life to make it conform with my hopes for the future.

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