Destination TBD

True to Capricorn style, I'm an extremely practical person. My decisions are sensible and I'm always on time, to the minute. My bills are paid well before the due date and I can find 10 uses for a Ziploc bag that don't include food storage (that's actually a good skill for world travel by backpack). Making the decision to throw caution to the wind and leave everything I know - my home, my friends, a steady source of income, and my hair stylist (he's good) - goes against every sensible bone in my body. At first, it scared the shit out of me.   I agonized over things: 'What about my job?' 'What about the mail?' 'HOW is this possible?'

But, I've been dreaming of this trip for so long, my initial fears are a distant memory. In the beginning, it was a harmless fantasy that lived in the back of my mind. Taking more than 2 weeks vacation per year is lavish in terms of American standards. Several years ago I broke free. In a stroke of weird luck, I lost my job for a short period of time and I took the opportunity to travel. I was only gone for 5 weeks, and along with intestinal bugs and the occasional bed bug, I became host to the travel bug. While the others are long gone, the travel bug has made its home in my spirit, and it beckons for more adventure... the discovery of exotic locations and wondrous landscapes, an understanding of foreign cultures and their history, and the path that will lead me to a better understanding of myself.

I am going to follow my dream. In it, I am wandering the dusty streets of a small, tropical village. I am lost in a big city with nothing to rely on but my instincts. I am haggling the price of a souvenir in a foreign language. I am scared out of my wits on a crowded bus hurdling its way along curvy mountain passes. I'm eating food that I don't recognize, making friends to trade travel stories with over several rounds of beer, and living without ATMs, electricity or hot water at times.

I created this site to document the process of planning the big escape, to living it, and returning again to "normal" life. Not only to document my experiences, but also to help others figure out how to do it themselves - especially the practical ones like me who have a tendency to get bogged down by the details.

The name 'Destination TBD' is a natural, as my plans are to fly by the seat of my pants with my partner, Benjamin, without knowing where we will land...


© 2004, Cheryn Flanagan