“Girls who travel” is the title of one of the many books currently on my nightstand. But what does this mean? Who are these girls who travel?
Everyone who’s in my friendship circle travels. Most people I socialise with travel. Who are these people who don’t travel these days? My facebook and my Instagram are chock full of different people in different places and rarely in their home nation. As the world becomes more connected and the cost of travel reduces, there isn’t a man or his dog who hasn’t travelled to some extent.
That’s to say if travelling only means to go to a different country. For me to travel isn’t to go on holiday. I mean holidays can involve travelling, but if someone says they are going travelling to me I’d expect them to be exploring, adventuring and experiencing something entirely different which pushes them out of their comfort zone just a little bit. Whereas to go on holiday means staying somewhere with some semblance of comfort, where everything feels very safe.
Boys who travel are just as accomplished as girls who travel and I’m not trying to suggest that they’re not. I do, however, believe that travelling as a female involves more risks and more confidence than travelling as a male. Yes, females get it easier on the bar and club front, we may get a few free drinks here and there. But it remains very much a fact that women are more vulnerable than men, we are the physically weaker sex, and in many countries we are still very much viewed as possessions rather than equals. There are things we have to take into account because we are female, I don’t ever remember anyone trying to buy a man for a herd of camels! But these mishaps often lead to the most memorable stories, and more often than not they lead to making you a stronger person.
So what defines these girls who travel? We don’t want a fairytale, we want a whirlwind. We don’t want your designer handbag, we want a backpack with more stories than days lived. We don’t want to fall in love with just one man, we want to fall in love with places, with 2am conversations round the embers of beach fires, with the stars and everything that falls in between. We don’t want a flashy car, we’d prefer a ticket to a faraway land. We don’t want a white picket fence, we yearn to have left parts of our heart scattered around the globe.
At the moment I am not travelling, but I am not in my home nation either. I am simply living in Australia. I am however adventuring and exploring and pushing my comfort zone just a little bit. I am a girl who travels. I get itchy feet. I want to pack up and leave. I crave adventure. I desire new sights, new sounds and new smells. I fight for my right to take risks, to make decisions for me and no one else. I protect my independence as a female more than most. I often refuse to ask for help. “I’ve got this” is my attitude. I’m so used to being independent, and fiercely so, it scares me to be dependent on someone else. I live in the faith that, if I had to, I could pack my bags and leave in less than 24 hours and, on a practical level, it would affect no one other than me.
My girls who travel are the most inspiring, determined, strong willed and accomplished people in my life. The reason for these common attributes in these amazing women can only be put down to the experiences they’ve had whilst touring the world one passport stamp at a time. There’s an open mindedness and self-confidence that seems to run through the very being of very girl who travels. And that is why I will continue collect them as my dearest friends as I try to embody being a girl who travels. After all “your vibe attracts your tribe”.