As many of you know, I’m not the type of person to really have goals or ambitions or really plans for that matter.  Yes, I’m aware of how lazy or slack or whatever other negatively connotated (is that actually a word?) word you would like to use to describe that aspect of my personality sounds, but it is something I’m hoping to some day in the hopefully near future change.  So it should be no surprise that one of my favorite quotes is “Not all who wander are lost.”  Thank you J.R.R. Tolkien for that one.  The term of wandering or the idea of someone wandering usually goes hand in hand with someone who is lost and miserable and doesn’t know which way is up or down or East or West.  To me however, this just isn’t always the case.  Think of the term wanderlust.  The word itself is just kind of magical and mysterious and I just really love the word.  But it literally means to have a lust for wandering. How can such a beautiful word be associated with something negative? Answer: it can’t.

I will agree that there are way that being a wanderer can be a negative thing, such as a homeless person wandering the streets of a city or a mass murderer wandering around looking for innocent people to kill.  But, when it comes to a stable (relatively) person who is simply wandering because they’re trying to figure life out or exploring interests or the world, this is hardly a negative thing.  How else are you supposed to really get to know yourself and figure yourself and others out without some innocent wandering first? You can’t. People who have strict plans and goals make me nervous.  It’s like if I’m a minute late to meet them for lunch I’ve somehow altered their fantastic plans and now because their schedule is off by 30 seconds they will no longer be able to find the cure for cancer.  I’m not dissing goals or ambitions by any means, but I do think that there should be some leniency with goals and ambitions.  What if your plans aren’t actually what you’re destined to do or be? But how else can you figure that out if you don’t give yourself room to wander a little bit?  There’s another quote I like that goes a little something like this: “Never stop wandering and never stop wondering.”  Preach.  You have to have some amount of yourself that still finds wonderment in discovering things you didn’t know or had never seen before.  And that’s where wandering comes in.  When I say wandering I don’t mean you have to find some random field in the middle of nowhere and walk around in it for an afternoon.  I mean you need to allow yourself the opportunity to do so.  Not literally a field but hey, if you’re driving somewhere and see a field and want to do that, go for it.  I’m sure it will enrich your life in some way.

I’m aware that I could be biased about the idea of wandering because I’m a pro at it, but I really don’t believe I am.  While I do envy those who have their lives all planned out down to what kind of soap they’ll use in the first home they own, those people do freak me out sometimes and I think they should be a little envious of people like me even though I probably freak them out with my lack of ambition. So here’s to wandering and getting lost because without some wandering you’ll never find yourself and where you should be. Oh and here’s the perfect song for this:


2 thoughts on “Wanderlust

  1. “If a man does not keep pace with his
    companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let
    him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
    It is not important that he should mature as soon as an apple-tree or
    an oak. Shall he turn his spring into summer?”
    ― Henry David Thoreau, Walden

  2. Hi,

    My name is KC Owens; I’m a college student who loves to travel! While cruising the Internet, I found Ruining My Twenties and really enjoyed reading your posts. Personally, I think traveling is a necessary part of life as you’re exposed to all sorts of new cultures and experiences. While enjoying time abroad, I’ve found it’s crucial to fully understand the dangers that you might encounter along the way. These mishaps are part of life and certainly part of travel but it’s always a great idea to take preventive measures to help ensure your safety while abroad.

    I was hoping that you would allow me to write a post for your site to share my travel safety tips with your readers? I put a lot of time and passion into my traveling and I would love to help others by offering safety advice as a result of the mistakes and triumphs I’ve had. I look forward to hearing from you!


    KC Owens

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