Why I Hate The Word Wanderlust

If we are going to compile a list of travel words that need to go away, then we can start with wanderlust.

Wanderlust is defined as “a strong desire to travel”. The urban dictionary has felt the need to further define wanderlust as “a very popular hashtag used on Instagram by girls who love to show off in all of their journeys”. No comment.

Before I start receiving hate letters from Pinterest users, allow me to clarify that I have nothing against people who like to travel. In fact, if I were, I would be something of an enormous hypocrite. I have read many intriguing articles written by bloggers who feel that wanderlust preaches inauthentic experience. However, my problem lies in the terminology.

We can collapse wanderlust into two words: wander and lust. While I have no qualms with the former, I do hold serious reservations about the latter. Lust – a passionate desire for something – has the implicit connotation that this object one longs for is not within reach. When men describe themselves as lusting after a woman (or vice versa – I’m nothing if not a feminist), they are generally referring to someone they cannot attain. Lust is unrequited, if you will.

If we apply this unrequitedness to wanderlust, we observe well-intending hash-tagging individuals as people whom consume all their time with pining after that escape but rarely take the measures necessary to turn dreams into reality. Am I generalising? Unashamedly so. But one consultation of Tumblr demonstrates my point.

For most people, travel doesn’t have to be something that exists purely in theory. Saving to finance a trip can be soul-crushing and demands sacrifice, but it’s not impossible. I saved up enough money to travel to Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia in late 2016 after ten months of working five part-time jobs on top of full-time university. It was social suicide – and admittedly not the best for my mental health – but it got me those plane tickets.

Wikipedia (everyone’s favourite reliable online source) discusses how wanderlust might “… reflect an intense urge for self-development by experiencing the unknown, confronting unforeseen challenges, getting to know unfamiliar cultures, ways of life and behaviours”.

I like that, I really do. Furthermore, I completely understand where people using the term for this purpose are coming from. But to put it bluntly, I feel like people are abusing the term and using it to make excuses. If you want to travel, formulate a plan and invest your energy into making it come to fruition.

In the words of the Travel Playbook: Start Traveling. Stop Lusting.

Photos sourced from Unsplash.

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5 Travel Tattoos That Don't Scream PINTEREST

If you read an earlier blog post of mine called Everything You Need to Know About Getting a Tattoo in Thailand, then you will know that I have a tradition of getting new ink every time I travel overseas. My latest instalment was homage to Katsushika Hokusai’s ‘The Great Wave off Kanagawa‘ painting, which is one of my favourite works of art.

Whilst I am (for some absurd reason) passionate about the painful process of tattooing, I do hold myself to some strict guidelines when choosing what designs to eternalise on my body. Personally, I prefer ink that tick three boxes; being androgynous, ‘less-is-more’ and monochromatic. In other words, nothing that pops up when you search ‘travel tattoos’ on Pinterest.

I have curated a selection of tattoos that – for my fellow minimalists out there – abide by these three personal rules.

1

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Image courtesy of ideastand.com

Whilst I do not see myself getting a sleeve (or half-sleeve, for that matter) anytime soon, I do have a soft spot for this particular idea. The sketchy design makes for a softer look, and the airplane extending from the arm onto the collarbone creates flow and direction.

2

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Image courtesy of thebrofessional.net

There are a lot of horror stories floating around out there about white ink gone wrong, but if you have a tattoo artist who knows what they’re doing, the results can be stunning.

3

classic-globe

This is a stylish alternative to the clichéd two-dimensional world map that dominates any post titled, ’15 Tattoos Everyone Got in 2016′.

4

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Image courtesy of tattoofilter.com

A tattoo that I myself am considering getting in the future (albeit a different location), this would pay gorgeous tribute to Michelangelo and the renaissance artwork of the 12th-15th century on a trip to Italy.

5

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Image courtesy of coolerlifestyle.com

It doesn’t get much more hip than a postage stamp inked into your skin. An innovative way to celebrate a specific point and place in time, it’s simple yet captivating.

What are your ‘rules’ when it comes to tattoo designs? I’d love to hear from you and see your favourites are!

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