Social media posts about people quitting their jobs to travel the world never tell the complete story. All they do is glorify the idea of travel and project it as the ultimate life goal. You must have come across hundreds of posts urging you to just drop everything, quit your shitty job, and take that bus or flight to an unknown land. While travelling like that sure is fun and a great way to learn new things, it is definitely not cakewalk.
And there’s no one better to prove this than this couple, Chanel Cartell and Stevo Dirnberger from South Africa, who quit their jobs in advertising to travel across the globe. Six months later, in their own words, they are now scrubbing toilets and doing all sorts of jobs to make ends meet.
They have been documenting their travel experience on their blog “How Far From Home”, and felt that social media did not bring out the complete story about travel. They said one might assume from their Instagram and blog posts that the whole travel experience is one fairytale story but it is not.
This is what they said on their blog ‘How Far From Home’:
“After being gone exactly 6 months, I feel it necessary we share the uglier side of our trip. Browsing through our blog posts and Instagram feed, it seems like we’re having the time of our lives. And don’t get me wrong – we are. It’s bloody amazing. But it’s not all ice-creams in the sun and pretty landscapes. Noooooo. So far, I think we’ve tallied 135 toilets scrubbed, 250 kilos of cow dung spread, 2 tons of rocks shovelled, 60 metres of pathway laid, 57 beds made, and I cannot even remember how many wine glasses we’ve polished.”
Of course, they travelled the world. Mingled from people from different communities, soaked in new experiences. And it was all worth it, they said.
“There’s nothing quite like swopping million rand advertising budgets for toilet scrubbing to teach you about humility, life and the importance of living each day as if it were your last.”
Travel can take a toll on health, and that’s something no one will tell you:
“So don’t let the bank of gorgeous photography fool you. Nuh uh. I am not at my fittest, slimmest or physically healthiest. We eat jam on crackers most days, get roughly 5hrs of sleep per night, and lug our extremely heavy bags through cobbled streets at 1am, trying to find our accommodation (because bus fares are not part of the budget, obviously).”
The couple doesn’t regret having travelled. Of course, not. But the harsh reality of travel is something they never dreamt of while planning their journey. Travel is not cakewalk, and certainly not everybody’s cup of tea. While it is great to see the world, it is also necessary to do a reality check and set your priorities right. It’s always better to know what you are getting into.
See their Instagram profile here