Someone asked me a few weeks ago how many countries I’ve been to during my 5-month backpacking stint in Southeast Asia. My response was just two – Thailand and Cambodia. The person who asked the question couldn’t believe it. She went on a 6-month backpacking trip across Southeast Asia and visited a lot of countries. It seemed that a similar figure was expected of me given that I was only one month short.
However, that didn’t happen. As much as I wanted to spend time to get to know each SEA country, I never got the chance to. My original plan was simple. I was supposed to roam around each country every time my visa stamp runs out.
instead of going to Laos, I headed to Chiang Mai instead
I almost made it to Laos though. I would have enjoyed the thought of visiting the French-inspired architectures in Vientiane or perhaps figure out a way to cross the busy streets of Vietnam. Heck, I didn’t even get the chance to visit Bali, roam around Malacca, and experience the rest of the amazing holidays to Borneo not to mention walking the streets of the highly developed and organized city of Singapore. There were a lot of things I could have seen on those 5 months. But due to the lack of funds, I decided to stay put on 2 countries – Thailand and Cambodia – because of the cheap cost of living.
When I realized that I could not afford to move around as often as I wanted to, I decided to change my goal and focused on living abroad at my own pace. Although living in Vietnam, Laos, Malaysia and Indonesia are not that expensive, I’ve considered Thailand and Cambodia as my comfort zone countries on my backpacking trip. I don’t want to mess up my finances knowing that I only had a few to spend. I was afraid I’d ran out of funds had I pursued my main goal without any decent job to keep me afloat. So I ended up going back and forth those two countries, which I love dearly.
After the turn of events last month, I decided to go home and postpone my dream. I’ve been wanting to do so, to tell you honestly. I was just holding on to the last straw before I finally pulled the plug. There were so many things I learned during those 5 months which I will share with you in the next coming days.
Currently, I’m home now and still trying to figure out the next move I’ll make to satisfy my itchy feet. When I travel again, I need to make sure I visit new places this time, whether here or abroad. I know I can’t easily give up on my dream. I know I’ll get there someday. When that day comes, I know I’ll be prepared.