Rediscovering my wanderlust
Finding my sense of adventure
Over the last 30 years, I’ve travelled millions of miles, and stayed away from home more than half the time. A few years ago, a friend asked me about the nicest place to stay and I replied, “At some point, all hotels are the same. If the bed is good enough, they have coffee and air conditioning, and they’re close to work, then it doesn’t really matter.” With almost a look of pity, she said, “That not really what I meant. But, after living and traveling to some of the most amazing places, your answer is ‘Close to work’?” We went on to talk about the cool cities, hotels, natural beauty, but that first exchange really stuck with me.
- There was a time when I couldn’t wait to see what would happen next, or to connect with a new stranger at a great bar. A good friend of mine once said, “Give Dave 2 weeks in any city, and he’ll have the place wired. The guys at the pub will know him by name, and he’ll find all the cool little hole-in-the-wall joints.” What happeed to that guy? I had to reboot my head and find my sense of adventure again.
- My first step was to start traveling for fun, on my own, and not exactly as a tourist. So, I booked a flight to Quito, Ecuador right after Christmas, and stayed in an Airbnb. Following some tips from my host and google, I got lost in Quito and found my wanderlust again. I made enough friends to enjoy my New Year’s Eve at a pub, take a few day trips and had an amazing time.
- They say that familiarity breeds contempt, but it shouldn’t. The worlds and the people in it are still just as amazing. Finding the local flavor is still a joy, and every place has the tragic, the mundane and the sublime which makes it special. Since then, I always make an effort with my business travel to explore and to meet new people, take a couple of solo vacation trips as well.
- Discovering new places, eating yummy foods, drinking and telling stories (lies) with fun friends, and reading interesting books are my absolute favorite things. I’ve joked that my ideal job would be to host book review and travel show with my best friends. In each episode we’d travel to the setting for a book, and while dining, drinking and exploring the destination, we’d talk about the novel especially if the setting shapes the book. After a recent trip to southeast Asia, I realized I don’t need to wait for it to be my job, I could do this for fun on my own and with friends when they can join me.