The Family You Choose

It’s nearly impossible to find friends that you’ll become so attached to as much as ones that you meet while traveling. 

Serial backpackers know; we’ll often feel more connected to a hostel bunkmate of 3 nights than we do to someone who we went to school with for 13 years. Why? It’s simple. Shared experiences. You’ll normally find yourself having the same outlook on life as people in your dorm room: carefree living, spontaneity, open-mindedness and the desire to acquire experiences as opposed to material things. And what happens when you share experiences with someone, no matter if they’re negative or positive? Connection. Whether you’re sleeping on the floor of the Lima train station, watching the sun rise over Angkor Wat, wallowing in self-pity during a case of Delhi-belly or motorbiking down the coast of Vietnam…they’ll all find a spot in your vault of unforgettable memories and seem to come flooding back when we start sentences with “Remember that one time when…”.

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If we’re meeting people back on home soil, they’re often hiding their true form. Their personalities disappear behind a cloak of work, stress, responsibilities and *sigh* general adulthood. We see potential friends – but maybe they’re in suits, checking important emails, seeming standoffish after getting deadlines from a boss and putting off their social life because there are more pressing matters to tackle. Is this the recipe for an unbreakable friendship? Hell no.

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Traveling with someone – or even just taking a day trip with someone you met at lunch – dramatically intensifies experiences. Enjoying these moments alone is empowering; enjoying them with others creates bonds that just don’t compare to anything else. There’s a good chance that your relationship with any of your travel-pals is silently based on these shared events, the unspoken reason that you feel like you share a brain and a heart. You can go months without seeing or speaking to each other but as soon as one of you reaches out? It’s like not a day has passed.

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My heart is on the brink of bursting when I think of my nomadic family. I love them with every ounce of my being and I can’t imagine my life without this gang of wanderers. And, to all those I’ve met in a fleeting moment while on the road? Don’t think that you aren’t making appearances in my day dreams and thoughts of “I wonder what they’re doing now…”. 

Is your mind suddenly overrun with thoughts of your closest travel-friends? Let them know you’re thinking of them! Come join us and reconnect with your true self here.

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