obstacle

Obstacle 3: Social Life and Fear of Insanity

I love hanging out with my close friends and family. They are more important to me than anything else, and they provide that sense of belonging that we all need. The thought of trekking around the world alone without that foundation starts to loom in my mind a bit until I shut it down.

While I concede it would be cool to have a partner or 2 in crime in this, I can’t wait for that to magically happen. Plus, I’m sure I’ll meet other travellers who are away from their loved ones and worried about having to sell snow-cones someday. I’m at a point in life where I know I need some discomfort. I’m too damn comfortable and have too many routines. 

There’s a quote in the book Roadtrip Nation that speaks to this: “The greatest nemesis to change is the conflict between what you want to become and how you want to feel.” I’m not really sure where the quote comes from, but it’s awesome and poignant. By the way, I highly recommend reading Roadtrip Nation; it’s pretty much phenomenal. 

Obstacle 1: Myself

Yep, the first obstacle was ultimately myself. I struggled with a few things, such as:

  • How the hell was I going to make money?
  • Wait, I have to quit this secure job where I get to hang out with awesome co-workers and health insurance doesn’t cost the equivalent of a used Ford Escort every month? Furthermore, would I actually be able to go into the office and just up and quit?
  • Well, people are going to think I’m completely insane. Wait, they already do. Okay, I’m good there.
  • At my age (I’m 38) there are certain things society expects of me. This includes having a steady job, having gobs of retirement money ready for an RV purchase when I’m 90, being married kind of unhappily but it’s okay cuz we have kids and the like. I hyperbolize, of course, and I think things have gotten quite a bit better regarding societal expectations, especially in a place like Austin, but it really just depends on who you’re speaking with.

Ultimately I had to realize something extraordinarily important: I didn’t have to have anyone to answer to except for myself. With that in mind, what the hell was I waiting for? What’s the worst case scenario? Well not to get all macabre, but death is the worst case, and that’s just something that can happen anywhere at any time, unfortunately. On a financial level, maybe I’d have to start selling snow-cones, or even go back to a desk job where I would work with snow-cone vendors. I don’t particularly like or have a passion for snow-cones, but it would be manageable. 

Anyway, obstacle 1 was soundly overcome.