I HATE TRAVELING

January 14, 2016


The title already gave it all. Should I continue? Well, if you insist ...


First and foremost, in this first post in 2016, I wanna say to you all a very very late Happy New Year.  I am sure all of you have made plans and resolutions for the year ahead, including traveling, am I right? A lot of people in my life had made a promise to themselves to at least travel once in a year, either locally or abroad. Good for them, and also good for you if you are just like them. But I'm not. Because I hate traveling.

“A journey is best measured in friends, rather than miles.” 
– Tim Cahill

Now now, I'm sure most of you think that I'm some kind of freak who despises society and likes to munch crackers while watching Making A Murderer on daily basis, but I'm not. I'm just like you all, minus the urge to get up, pack on a suitcase, and go trotter the world. It also doesn't mean that I like to stay at home, because I don't. I'm a self-proclaimed mall-wanderer, cafe-hopper and cinema-regular. 

The urge to write about my "discouragement" on traveling came up when I was watching this local youtuber who made a video about things to do in Japan. I'm gonna tell you this : just by watching that video, my level of discomfort and uneasiness shot up. I don't know why so I can't tell you why. I mean, if I were to get a free ticket to Japan right now, all expenses paid, I wouldn't go. Even to Paris, for all that matter. I just don't want to and I don't like it. 

In addition, I was born in a family who never travels. My parents do like traveling, but they just don't have the time for it. And they always say that "We could use the money for your college," stuffs. The farthest I go was to Singapore (2 hours from Surabaya LOL), for plenty of times, and that was only because my mom needed to get a yearly checkup there. Just imagine if my mom didn't need to get that check-up, I'm sure I'd be visiting Singapore for just once, or maybe never. To make things even more crazier, I only visited Bali TWICE and the first time I couldn't even remember. I've never even visited small cities near Surabaya like Tretes, Trawas, Batu, Malang, etc for more than once. I often went to Jakarta when I was little to visit my grandparents there, but since they were gone (which was like 12 years ago), I have never gone there anymore. You probably think that those lack of traveling would make me want to travel more, but in reality, it's the contrary.

Fortunately, beside my unknown whatsoever reasons to hate traveling, I was able to sum up some of the known reasons of why I hate traveling :

1. I don't like to be in the middle of somewhere. It's actually a branch of my basic flaw, of which I dislike new things.

2. It's a waste of time, money and energy. In my defense, for me to travel from Indonesia to, let's say, China, would cost me more than ten million for a week. I could use that money to shop books, clothes and many other things that won't just dissolve within a week. And I could really use that 1 week and 1-week worth of energy to do something productive, let's say making a portfolio or simply sleep.

3. Foods, hotels, transportations, toilets and beds experience while traveling scare the shit out of me. I know it's crazy considering the fact that most people travel for food, but I just don't like the sensation of not knowing what to eat and also I have this fear of eating the wrong food for my digestion. So in Singapore, I always eat nasi lemak, hainan chicken rice and yong tao foo, and that's that (ps : desserts and snacks don't count; I actually love them). And about the hotels-toilets-beds, I just hate it. I don't even want to sleep in my parent's room at home, so no, no matter how nice the hotel is, it's uneasy for me. Especially since I'm an only child; whenever I travel with my parents, extra bed is my (forced) go-to. On transportations, it's easy, I'm afraid I'll get lost or get kidnapped.

4. Packing. I'm actually a fast-packer (approximately 5 minutes with list) and quite a light packer (a cabin-size will do for 3 days-2 nights trip). But the excruciating head pain I experienced whenever I make The List of What I Should Pack is killing me. I'm quite an OCD, so I have this crazy routines of making a scenario from the minute I wake up, take a shower, until dressed just to determine all the utensils and stuffs I need to complete that routine. And it applies not for a day-basis, but on a routine-basis (so if I were to change/take shower 3 times a day, then 3 times the 'imagination'). And that's just for a tropical country, what about in a 4-season country? Can't imagine.

5. I always have the feeling that I'm forgetting something. Either phone, camera, even my dear friend hand sanitizer. And it drives me crazy.

6. I love airports, but I hate flying. Don't get me wrong, I'm not scared of flying, but I am a little traumatic when it comes to planes, especially LCC ones. I'm 5'11" and the seats kill my knees. And back, for all that matter. This is why I must be rich so I would fly business, not first class, for the sake of my beloved long legs.

7. I hate to put an effort to research and to learn a thing or two about the place I'm going to visit. And I hate adapting to new surroundings only to get comfortable then hit by the reality that I must leave. Why even bother???!!

There. But I have something else to say. It's not like I don't want to visit some places before I die. I do wanna visit ONE place before I die. It's not Paris, but it's New York, and I actually want to live there in the future. Here are my list on why New York is an exception to me :

1. I speak their language. Well. So, I don't need to be afraid to ask directions or whatever. Though some say that a lot of New Yorkers won't even bother to help you. But there's Google. And its maps. That will do.

2. The high cultural diversity won't make me feel like a "tourist". I mean, I could always be mistaken for one of those Malaysian or Singaporean residing there, am I not?

3. You probably know everything about New York from movies. There's this Times Square, the Ellis Island, Empire State Building, Central Park, etc.

4. It's a CITY, not much different from mine, only bigger and more 'cramped' in every ways. It's beautiful.

5. I fancy skyscrapers. Not landmarks. Not mountains and forests. Not deserts. And certainly not ocean and beaches.

6. What NYC offers don't overwhelm me. But that doesn't mean that the city itself is lacking of attractions. It is actually full of it.

7. Duh I just wanna go there.

People may say that traveling is a way to live your life, but if you're living, then why do you leave? I know it's my subjectivity speaking, but I would be more than happy to enjoy my staycation. So yes, if I'm going to Canada next year to get my master degree, I'm fucked.
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