I’m about to let you in on a secret that every traveller knows (but will never tell you).
We want you to stay home.
That’s right, even though we share tips on My Five Acres about getting out and living a life less ordinary, in reality, we want you to stay right where you are.
You see, just like the world can’t sustain 7 billion people all eating meat every day, or 7 billion people who all have cars and TVs, it also can’t sustain 7 billion of us traipsing around the world and shirking our responsibilities back home.
The monuments, beaches, and museums of the world are already too crowded. Have you ever tried to get a look at the Sistine Chapel or to wander quietly around the Forbidden City? It’s a worse crush than being in the front row at a One Direction concert.
So for the sake of the rest of us, please don’t travel.
If you like things to be “just so”, stay home.
When you’re travelling, nothing comes pre-packaged and perfect. You have to adapt, compromise, and thrive on change. If you like everything in its right place and can’t handle surprises on a
daily hourly basis, stay home.
If discomfort scares you, stay home.
On any trip, no matter how expensive and luxurious, there will be moments of discomfort. From time to time when you travel, you will have to squeeze into tiny spaces, rub shoulders with hordes of other people, get sweaty, be cold, eat distasteful food, and smell some noxious stinks.
If you depend on perfectly air-conditioned spaces with tasteful furniture and floors you can eat off of, stay home.
If you can’t be offline for more than a couple of hours, stay home.
Do you start going a bit batty if you haven’t checked the news (or Facebook, or Twitter, or Buzzfeed) for the last two hours? Do you get anxious that you’re missing important emails or a life-changing Apple announcement? You can be connected almost anywhere on earth these days, but if you’re going to spend your entire trip staring into a tiny screen anyway, stay home.
If you already know everything, stay home.
On the road, you will learn things that will blow everything you thought you knew right out of the water. People and places will surprise the hell out of you if you let them.
If your mind is like a solid block of cast iron, if you already know everything about everything, if cold hard facts cannot shift your point of view, please, stay home.
If America is the best country on Earth, stay home.
Hey, my US buddies. I know you’ve been victims of propaganda, compelled to listen to the phrase “America is the best country on Earth” on repeat since you were a baby. But, if all the studies on worldwide healthcare, standard of living, education, poverty, and happiness have not forced you to entertain the possibility that there are plenty of countries that are “better” than your dear homeland, please, for the love of God, stay home.
If you just want to party hard, stay home.
I never understand why people travel half way around the world in order to get wasted in the youth hostel every night (with other people who also travelled half way around the world to get wasted in the youth hostel every night).
Related: Strange Animals
If you want to spend your nights getting drunk and your days sleeping it off (or worse, taking a bus tour with sour-smelling hangover sweat and a haggard scowl on your face), please stay home.
Travel isn’t for everyone
Not everyone wants to travel and not everyone enjoys it when they do. We don’t all like the same things, which is what makes us so interesting as species.
Thank heavens for that!
If you’re not curious, if you’re not interested in what makes humans human, if you don’t want to explore your own capacity for growth and change and you like your comfort zone, dammit, then travelling is not for you. Unless you feel a powerful call to explore, adventure, and find out what’s on the other side of this planet of ours, please, just stay home.
You’ll leave more room for the rest of us out there in the great unknown.
What do you think? Are we all better off if most people don’t travel, or should everybody be forced to get out there and see the world?
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Hi, I’m Jane, founder and chief blogger on My Five Acres. I’ve lived in six countries and have camped, biked, trekked, kayaked, and explored in 50! At My Five Acres, our mission is to inspire you to live your most adventurous life and help you to travel more and more mindfully.