As most everyone knows, I’m almost always down for an adventure. I love pushing myself and seeing new places, and more often than not, I’m up for booking a ticket anywhere in the world. I’ve seen and done some pretty interesting things on my travels, and I usually have a never-say-no attitude to most experiences.
However, there have been times I have planned a trip and put a down payment on an adventure, only to find myself backing out at the last moment. It doesn’t happen very often, but there have been a few flights I have missed—some experiences I have backed out on. It seems counterintuitive to my personality, but there are times where the moment wasn’t right to travel and I needed to stay put.
One of these times happened not that long ago. I was all set to go on a trip after just landing in Spain. My boyfriend, Daniel, and I were making the move together and we were excited to have place that we could call home for a few months. This trip wasn’t just a jaunt, either. I was supposed to be gone for a month and would have limited access to WiFi—leaving him alone in a foreign country where he didn’t speak the language. We had just started our new life in Spain and I was supposed to leave again. I couldn’t do it. I woke up the day I was supposed to leave and looked over at him.
“I’m going to stay,” I said.
I helped him move our suitcases into our new place later that afternoon. I had thrown my expensive plane ticket down the toilet, along with the money I had spent on all the gear I would need to going to a very different climate. I didn’t really care, though, and I felt relieved more than anything.
There’s a fine line between jumping in and enjoying the journeys you’ve put together and knowing when you need to step back. I couldn’t have replaced those first few days of living in Spain and enjoying our brand new life in a foreign country together. In truth, my relationship with Daniel was much more important to me than any trip I could have gone on. It still is.
The two of us blew off another trip to Malta this summer. We had found some cheap flights, but we hadn’t taken account how much effort it would be to get from our home in Granada to Girona—which offered the only cheap flights out. It was simply bad planning on our part, and we found that any money we had saved on the plane tickets was offset by the cash it would take to get to Girona in the first place. It ended up just being a smarter plan to ditch the flights and relax for a few days before we left Spain.
Fear should never be a reason to back away from traveling, and I’ve never made the decision not to travel because I was afraid. However, I’ve had higher priorities than seeing a new destination before—and knowing when to stick to those priorities has helped me to determine whether I should stay or if I should go. As I get older, more and more priorities crop up. When I was single, I never had to worry about leaving a place behind and I had a more flexible budget that didn’t require that I think about paying for health insurance each month. But I’m not single and all that young anymore, which requires that I think about other priorities more than I used to. Travel is still one of my main ones—just not the main one.
Have you ever blown off some of your travels for a particular reason?