The Art of Not Planning
I don’t want to plan anymore.
I don’t want to pore over site after site of travel information obsessing over where we should go and what it will cost.
I don’t have time to do all that anyway. I work too many hours and I am also taking classes to pass another licensing exam for work. Add in kids, family, and household duties, and I have too much on my plate already.
The thought of planning out every last microscopic trip detail is stressing me out.
Rather, I am choosing a loose travel route and a big dose of faith.
Since a portion of our travels will be in lesser developed countries, a go-with-the-flow mindset will be critical. Travel plans can get derailed anyway. We may plan to visit a really great museum and find it closed and under construction. We may plan a picnic on the beach and be rained out. We may plan to merely pass through one place on the way to another, and choose to linger there longer.
I want full freedom to savor all of that when we travel, and to get my eyeballs out of the guidebook and off the computer screen. The locals know better than any guidebook anyway, and this will help us interact more with people along the way.
I have sketched out a tentative path through Latin America with expected time periods of at least one week in each place. Learning Spanish is a priority for me and the kids, so this makes sense for us.
Since my husband is Colombian, I have also penciled in 8 weeks in Colombia. He can be in charge of the itinerary during that time. Eight weeks will give us time to explore various regions while also spending quality time with his siblings and elderly parents, aunts, and uncles.
Europe, Asia, and Africa would be great, but let’s get real. Our budget will stretch further if we can minimize air travel. Also, life is cheaper in most of Latin America, especially in the regions where we have friends and family to stay with. Those savings will leave us with a stronger cash cushion when we return home.
It is an incredible luxury and privilege to able to choose this and I do not take it lightly. When I let the wonder and gratitude of it all soak in, it is almost too much. The ability to make such a profound life choice is true freedom and I am blessed by luck of birth into a nation where that is possible.
Today I click “publish” – with no planning!