Today, I Hate Traveling
There is one time when I really, really hate traveling: the day before departure.
I hate leaving my family. I look at my son and I can’t imagine going just one day without seeing him, can’t imagine not being able to hug him whenever I want. I feel such an acute sense of homesickness that I am sometimes tempted not to leave.
Fear sets in too. What if something happens to me? Worse, what if something happens to them? How could I ever live with myself? And yet bad things could happen on land as on the air, at home as away, while working as on vacation. A life crippled by fear would be a life wasted.
Then there’s a bit of guilt. While I’m going on food trips, my mum will be feeding my son. While I trek through rice paddies and lie on the beach, my son will be traipsing around our backyard, without me to tell him to be careful. While I’m seeing things I’ve never seen before, it will be just another ordinary day for my family. And yet…well, I can’t think of a way to justify the inequality, except that I know I would wish the same thing for them too, that they will also be able to see the wonders of the world, and I know I will do whatever I can to make that happen.
These feelings pass, or rather they are consciously pushed to the back of the mind. They are eventually superseded by excitement or — more often, in my case — a mind-occupying flurry of last-minute packing and repacking. But they are very real and rather ironic for someone who loves travel. Sometimes I think traveling is really an act of faith — in the pilot, in yourself, in your family, in the future. You trust that everything will turn out well, during and after, though there are aren’t any guarantees and never will be.
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