When you’re full of the travel blues and looking back over your holiday photos with rose tinted glasses, it can be hard to remember that sometimes, just sometimes, there actually are some crappy times when you’re away. Here’s my list of what I don’t miss from my trip in Central America this summer, in an effort to convince myself that, yes, I would much rather be sat inside on a rainy September English day.
1. Sweating. Oh so sweaty. I took four T-shirts with me and could have quite easily get through them all in a day if frequent wardrobe changes were acceptable. A lot of the time I just had to embrace the stink until the evening. It also means multiple showers a day which just isn’t very eco friendly now, is it?
2. Guys in wife beaters. Sorry – I’m just not a fan. Probably more of a general summer problem but its definitely more endemic among the traveller population.
3. Not being able to afford breakfast. I was on way more of a budget than anyone else on tour and just couldn’t afford to eat three times a day at the restaurants or hotels. I’d normally take myself down to the market and pick up some fruit instead.
4. Fighting over the air con in a minibus. Let’s just say I was travelling with some air con hogs. Hmmph.
5. Catcalling. Also I hate that they call the attitude “Machismo” in Spanish as it’s way too similar to “macho” in English. Shouting obscenities at me in the street is not macho! Can I just finish my walk in peace please? (Also what is the correct response? I normally don’t dignify it with anything, especially not an angry one but sometimes it’s just so awful you have to laugh)
6. Rushing around everywhere. It just resulted in a sweatier Kirstie really. Turns out no matter how low maintenance I am when I’m travelling, I still do need 10 minutes at the very minimum to get ready for dinner.
7. Mosquito bites. AGGGGHH. (Might as well add to that – remembering to take malaria tablets)
8. The horrible feeling of not knowing if someone is being genuinely nice or is just looking to make a quick buck off you. It’s only a horrible feeling because I really wish I didn’t feel that way sometimes. I want to believe everyone is friendly and helpful just because they can be, but sometimes you can’t help but put your guard up. It sucks. 8/10 times, people are just being nice.
9. Not being able to drink the tap water. When I got to Costa Rica, where you can drink the tap water, I could have kissed that beautiful, clean land. Someone told me on this tour that he had never seen someone drink as much water as I did. (Everyone else seemed to be addicted to Diet Coke so I take that as a weird compliment.) I drink more than the recommended 2 litres everyday at home, imagine how my body was reacting in a situation where I was sweating more than I could rehydrate (see number 1!). Buying water is expensive and so wasteful.
10. Sleeping around the mess on my bed. My backpack only opens at the top so when I’m looking for something, it all gets dumped on my bed. Then I rush out for dinner, return after drinks and in an effort to not wake the room mates (or sheer laziness – you decide!) I’d push all my stuff to the side and sort of curl around it. Yeah, I don’t know why either – ask drunk Kirstie.
What things don’t you miss from travelling? Or at least, what can you convince yourself was bad about it?
Let’s be honest, we’ll all happily put up with much worse than the above if it meant we got to travel forever.