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It will happen that there are days travelling will just be too much, too frustrating, and too chaotic: you’ve got to have no goal except to travel: to see and listen to the world around you, and let it imprint itself on you, in order to manage and keep down the stress.

When my boyfriend and I were on our camping trip last month in BC, we had a day where it felt like everything was going wrong.

That morning, we were in Banff, Alberta where it was raining just enough to leave you with a misty feeling, but wet enough to soak through the tarps I had laid beneath our tent. It was also the second day of our trip, so we hadn’t gotten into a morning routine yet and ended up just throwing everything in the back of the car in a chaotic mess, dry things perilously close to those wet and muddy, to get out of the campground before check-out time.

By evening we were in Revelstoke, BC and had hung up our tent and tarps to dry. We went to buy food and returned to have a fellow camper inform us that they had literally just chased a black bear out of our campsite ten minutes earlier. We thanked him for letting us know and cooked our dinner with an eye on the bushes surrounding the entire back side of the campsite.

Because we got a late start, we were also eating late and it was dark by the time we were sorting through the mess in the back of the car and setting up the tent, which is when I found our entire dish soap bottle exploded on the pillows, the sleeping bag, and half of the cookware.

 

In hindsight, it wasn’t so bad. We used a different blanket that night and slept together on the one less soapy pillow. In the morning, we did laundry and hung out the bags the cooking gear had been in to dry.

At the time, I had spent all day squished in the passenger seat of my car, maps and boots and bottles all over me with barely enough room for my feet, unable to see out the rear widow of my car and thinking about how we were going to be wet, cold and muddy all night.The soap explosion was just the icing on the cake.

That’s the thing about travelling though, you have to just go with it. Just roll with the punches and keep in mind that you literally have nothing to do except see and listen to the world around you, to discover new ways of life, culture, and people.

I am adamant about one thing: if you want to have a real trip, a life changing adventure, making discoveries and explorations and seeing things you never saw before, you have to let go of all your control and let the world imprint itself on you. Let the world just happen and take the side roads, follow the signs for 35 flavour soft serve ice cream and jump over the fences labelled NO TRESPASSING. Let the day develop as it will, keeping a good attitude, and no trip will ever get too stressful.

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