An Education, Not a Vacation

29 Jul

A wise young man told me before I left to remember that this trip is an education, not a vacation. A very insightful piece of wisdom, it’s something I have to remind myself every day, especially when I lose sight of the reason I decided to take this trip. I didn’t decide to take this trip to get a break from my unsatisfactory life. I decided to take this trip to change my life into something I like. In order to bring about that change, I must embrace this trip as both a worldly and a personal education.

This is a trip of highs and lows – every day brings with it fun experiences, but also minor annoyances and sometimes even extreme aggravations. When things aren’t fun, I sometimes forget that this trip was meant to be an education, not a vacation. Instead of focusing on what I’m learning from a particular situation, I focus on the fact that I’m not having fun at that exact moment. I get overwhelmed by the obstacles to overcome and problems to solve in order to get from place to place, see certain things, or even eat or find a place to stay. I get frustrated that I can’t communicate easily with people I need information from. I get angry when I get overcharged for something due to my tourist naivety. I get annoyed that every hostel I go to seems impossible to find. I overlook the fact that these things are all part of the education – learning about the world and learning about myself.

I must remember that every part of this trip – the fun parts and the not-so-fun parts – contributes to this education. If I remember that all of these things are an important part of the education, I may actually have fun overcoming the obstacles and solving the problems to get through each day. At the very least, it will be incredibly rewarding when I attain the change I am seeking.


7 Responses to “An Education, Not a Vacation”

  1. Allen Whitt August 6, 2011 at 9:09 pm #

    absolutely. stay flexible!

    love this post

    • carlylarson August 22, 2011 at 9:06 pm #

      your bro miiiight have been the wise young man who provided the inspiration for this post :)

  2. staci August 6, 2011 at 11:38 pm #

    i completely understand this. you are so amazing CPL. :)

  3. Prairie Mathews August 9, 2011 at 11:45 pm #

    Carly I almost cried the first time I read your blog because it was so inspirational! I am going through alot of this in my own life and am amazed that you have the courage and stregnth to do what you’re doing. Thank you for blogging and letting me live vicariously through you.

    • carlylarson August 22, 2011 at 9:10 pm #

      prairie, you don’t know how happy it makes me that my blog could provide you even a little bit of inspiration! i would love to have a traveling friend if you would like to take a trip this year :)

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