You know the feeling you get when you’ve been traveling around Italy for a month and you would almost rather not get out of bed than see another cathedral? It’s not that you wouldn’t still think it is big and amazingly beautiful; it’s not that you wouldn’t look at it and say, “Wow, that is really effing cool.” No, it’s just that maybe the idea of it doesn’t give you that same feeling it once did… the goosebumps and the butterflies.
I’m lucky at this juncture in my life to have had such a rich travel itinerary with some experiences that just seemed to open one door after another. But, I know about travel burnout like in the example above, and I also know about something a little less on the scale: loss of the travel goosebumps. In this case, you get excited about travel, but it’s just not on the same level as the all-encompassing goosebumps-throughout-the-body sensation.
When I was fresh and new with just the idea of world travel filling my mind, I ALWAYS had the travel goosebumps. If I read about someone trekking through Nepal or going on safari in Africa, I was just so overwhelmed at the possibilities that I would often get the shivers. The feeling can only be compared to the tickle in your tummy received when going down roller coasters or hitting a hill just right when driving. A smile immediately crosses my face every time.Now I hope this doesn’t come off wrong, because I still get excited about travel, only… travel around Australia, or travel to the United States, or even travel to Malaysia when I’m with a group of people that are experienced in that area is just not something that has given me the travel goosebumps. In actuality, it has been so long since I’ve had the feeling that I almost thought I would never get it again. You know, like maybe I had been there and done that and now there’s nothing new to excite me again quite the same.
Well, guess what…
I was wrong!
I mentioned it in passing a couple of times on this blog here and there, a few times on Twitter, and I also made an announcement on Facebook, but in case you didn’t know: I booked a trip back to Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan for a month this November. I’ll be heading off alone, stopping off in Istanbul for 4 days on the way there and arriving at 3am on Halloween at my beloved, crazy, unique old stomping grounds in the country that Lauren can’t pronounce.
All I know right now is that my friend Erica will be there (she’s an Anthro major, Master or the like) and that I will probably sign up again for some intensive Russian lessons at The London School in Bishkek. I’ll be inclined to buy shit loads of kefir, eat plates of lagman, struggle with the marshrutkas, hunt for decent Internet, eat at that Georgian restaurant I once loved (if it is still there) and avoid corrupt border guards as much as possible.
As I am still coming to terms with my decision to go back, I have been reading my old Kyrgyzstan posts and thinking about how freaking weird and interesting my life was back then. Seriously, the thought of doing it all again has made me excited and terribly, terribly nervous all at the same time. This has given me the travel goosebumps.
Yep, I’ve still got it.