It’s not good when you’re constantly daydreaming of being somewhere else. Not that there aren’t many good points to my daily / weekly life. Yet at the same time, London is increasingly testing my reserves of optimism. The weather here is shockingly, shockingly bad, bad for April or November, let alone July. Meanwhile, the tube and overground trains are as packed as ever. Pushing your way onto a Victoria Line train every morning isn’t much fun, even if it’s only for two stops. And finally, the cost of everything remains high – including paying for the privilege of pushing yourself onto that Victoria Line train.
So, if my problems with this city can be summed up as a combination of weather / population density / cost of living, it should come as no surprise that I’ve been dreaming of such places as Thailand and Indonesia, where you can feast like a king for pennies, the sun never sets, and there’s hardly a soul in sight (OK slight exaggerations).
Recently many scenarios have occurred to me – first, the ‘long term’ plan of saving up before travelling off, around the world (estimated cost for a year of travel, £15,000). Next, the idea that I could save while living and working back in Tokyo, Japan (although that would mean a return to ELT, and the risk of me squandering any potential savings on a combination of food / drink and karaoke). Next, the thought that maybe I could find a publishing job in Australia (could I? well, maybe. who knows – I haven’t done the research yet). And finally, how about just going on a fun short-term trip – Barcelona / Thailand / Lebanon – to ease my short-term travel pains (although on that count it’s barely a month since my last trip, so the temporary travel plan probably won’t have its intended effect). Then there’s the thought that the time for such crazy plans is over. At 28, I’m ‘established’, or at least more established that I was at 24, when I was leaving two years in Japan for another year in South Korea without any concern about my long term goals.
Of course, London’s not all bad – there are films to see, exhibitions to visit, restaurants to eat in, pubs to drink in. And there’s people that I know. The question is, which is better – to risk all for a crazy travel plan that may leave me unemployed and depressed when I come back – or to risk sitting tight, potentially until I write a similar post to this one when I’m 32, bemoaning my missed opportunities.