Today, I hit the big 40.
Yes, I’m partially petrified by that. But that’s besides the point.
But in my time, I’ve done a heck of a lot of travel – be it aboard a Thai Airways plane when I was very young, a trip to Australia aboard an Air India Boeing 747 (the long way round), trips to Singapore and Brunei with Singapore Airlines, short hops with British Airways to Germany… the list goes on.
And at 19 or so… I was done with air travel – and travel generally for a while. Why? The joy of University, settling into a job, setting up a home.
Or getting on with life.
Things changed in 2005 when I discovered Low Cost Airlines – and flew Germanwings and Ryanair in short succession. And in 2006 – I began travelling again with a trip to the USA with British Midland International.
The rest is pretty much documented history – with me learning about points and miles in 2007… and it all went downhill from there.
So what have I learned over the years? Some bullet points and thoughts
- BE FLEXIBLE: If there’s one thing I’ve picked up over the years, be flexible over… anything. It can lead to good things a lot of the time
- SPLIT YOUR WALLET: I’ve lost enough credit and debit cards over the years to be known as “careless”. Splitting your wallet so you have a spare credit card and some spare local currency is common sense.
- KNOW WHERE YOUR PASSPORT IS: I can tell you where my passport is at any time (in my case, it’s next to an Office for Mac box). Know where it is, so you can act. And when travelling – keep it secure in case of an emergency
- KEEP YOUR MIND OPEN: I don’t tend to plan what I’m doing in a city or place. This has lead to some interesting adventures in my time by simple turning left or right and following along the road in front of you.
- BE AWARE: You never know what will happen!
- KNOW WHEN TO QUIT: Sometimes that walk maybe too much. Or the back hurts because you’ve been an idiot and are carrying a 65ltr rucksack all day.
- WEAR SUNSCREEN: Nah. There might be a song about that, but that’s bit of of advice I don’t tend to follow… because I’m normally in the cold… and normally wet!
- REMEMBER LIFE IS FOR LIVING: I’ve had it brought home to me in recent weeks that life is too short, and anything can happen (in fact it’s one of the reasons why I go to Chicago a lot – to celebrate life with my friends)… and that life needs to be celebrated and enjoyed – and not endured.
- NO ONE IS TOO FAR AWAY TO JUMP ON A PLANE, A TRAIN OR A CAR TO SAY HELLO. Maybe that’s the lesson of year 39 I’ll take with me going forward
I’m off now to get a tiny bit tiddy to celebrate my 40th, but I’ve got to be back at the flat later… as I have to finish packing
British Airways and Cathay Pacific await me.
But still. 40.
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