On a relatively balmy evening, I was staying over my elderly great-aunt’s house and we spent our after- dinner hours browsing through some pictures of my recent trip to Thailand, and she couldn’t help but shed a tear.
“I would have loved to go there. Should’ve gone anywhere really, when I could,” she said, wiping her misty eyes, and asked to go to bed.
My aunt had to have the lower part of her leg removed when she was around 40 due to complications with diabetes, and has mostly just stayed at home. I take every chance I can to visit her, since my own mother is not around any longer. I look around Aunt Mel’s house, and it certainly is a big, comfortable home, and I wonder why she never decided to travel in her younger years, because she certainly could.
She had money in her younger years, and even up to now, but it mostly goes towards her medical needs and upkeep. I think back on what she said, and I remember an article I read recently on one of those financial planning sessions, where a smiling man in a suit is the usual model on the brochures.
“SAVE UP NOW TO TRAVEL IN STYLE LATER! INVEST IN OUR TIME PLANS!!!” the article screams, and while it is wise to save up in case of a rainy day, don’t forget to set out a bit for yourself so it won’t feel like you’re just living to work.
That article advised to invest in their time deposits that within 20 years time, you could borrow from so you’d be “able to pay for first class!” But I look at Aunt Mel, and I am more determined more than ever to explore the world as early and as much as I can.
While articles like that are well-meaning, they don’t really factor in things like sickness or mortality, because you never know what’s going to happen within those two decades.
You could get into an accident, the world economy could crash turning us all into hostile post-apocalypse cretins, or you could develop a lifelong debilitating disease that can hinder your movement, making travel impossible.
I mean, what is the use of first class when we’re all just headed to the same place? You could scream at me that “there’s added comfort and privacy!!!”, but we all sleep with our eyes closed, and there are a myriad of products out there for cheap that you can bring along to make your economy class experience better. It doesn’t make sense!
But I wouldn’t deter you either if saving up to arrive bougie at a foreign place is your deal, we all have our preferences, and if you can afford it, then even better for you.
Yet there are people like me who earn just enough to be able to eat daily and even travel internationally on occasion, and I don’t need your first class. I’d take a plane, sleep on a bus, whirr around on a motorcycle if I have to, because sometimes the journey gives a lot more experience than the destination.