Okay, okay, I know these two things may seem like two totally different things, and technically they are; one involves packing up your rucksack to explore the world and have an adventure, whilst the other involves sitting in front of a laptop for hours on end, typing away and editing photos. But as someone who has recently thrown herself head first back into the world of blogging (after suffering a nasty case of the January Blues) I have to admit I have been feeling and experiencing similar emotions to when I was backpacking.
I wondered how that could be possible, especially since I couldn’t be further from the backpacking scene (I’m currently renting an overpriced flat in North West London which I slowly seem to be filling with more and more grown up non-backpacker-friendly possessions … I got my first ever toaster last week). But as I sat back and analysed my life as those two things – one being a blogger and the other a backpacker – I noticed several pretty awesome similarities between the two…
Blogging & Backpacking = Instant friendships
A guy once turned up at a hostel I was staying at with a backpack on one arm and a pizza box in the other and announced “So am I supposed to eat this by myself or is anyone going to help me?” And of course like a pack of hungry wolves, we ran towards him and tucked in, each grabbing a sloppy cheesy slice of the good stuff. We all hung out for the whole night like we were old friends; giggling, posing for photos and sharing funny travel anecdotes.
This is exactly what Blogger events are like! Because there are so many bloggers out there now – and I say that positively – it’s very common to go to a press event and not know anyone. But despite turning up and not recognising a single soul, within seconds you will no doubt have already met your squad for the evening, and you’ll chat away over a glass of red, swapping Twitter handlers and helping each other adjust your camera settings to best reflect the venues lighting. At the end of the night, after you’ve learnt everything about these people and their blogs, you walk to the station where you say Goodbye, you part ways and you wonder to yourself ‘Will I see them again?’
Two nights later you’re doing it all over again with a brand new set of fabulous blogger friends.
Blogging & Backpacking = Plans & Schedules changing at the drop of a hat
In the same way that a well-planned and carefully thought out backpacking route can suddenly be disrupted for a last minute brand new crackerjack of a plan (like that time me and my boyfriend got all the way to the top of Thailand only to change our minds about going to the Full Moon party, and so we re-traveled a 36 hour journey aaaaaaaaaaaaall the way back down to the islands again) – Blogging plans can change!
*Jeez that was a long sentence*
No matter what posts you have scheduled, sometimes current events or even just out-of-the-blue inspiration can arrive, and you create a corker of a post that NEEDS to be published immediately if not sooner. Basically you can completely disrupt your blogger schedule and plans, but it’s always totally worth it.
Blogging & Backpacking = Wanting to document everything
It’s not always possible, but as a blogger I tend to photograph everything, or as much as I can. In a way documenting my life is almost a part of my life now, and I imagine many others would agree. We spend so much time sharing thoughts, feelings and bits and pieces of ourselves online. When I see something beautiful, funny or interesting I want to share it on my blog.
It’s the same when I travel. More often than not the pictures I take on my travels never do the setting or the subject any justice. But still I will always try, I have to to try, to capture that moment to share it, if nothing but to inspire others to come and see what I’m seeing.
Blogging & Backpacking = Feeling like you are really achieving something
As fun as it was going on the lash every weekend in Shoreditch followed by two days in bed recovering, breaking away from my normal life to journey abroad and discover new cultures, new foods and new people, for me felt like I was finally achieving something. I was doing something I never thought I would; I was being brave, I was trying out brand new experiences and I was doing something exciting with my life.
My blogger life has pretty much been the same. Just like my unexpected mid-twenties outburst of love for travel & backpacking, I never expected to be a blogger! It was never a plan I had. In fact ten years ago I didn’t even know what a blogger was (but they did exist, quietly between the pages of ‘Proper websites’). However, as soon as I got my little domain back in 2010, I just loved that I had my own corner of the internet to write and express myself. And as time went on, the words got easier, the photo’s prettier (the HTML less painful!) and the achievements bigger and bigger. I honestly feel, and am not ashamed to say, that it really feels like I’m doing something with my life by being a blogger; even if to others my blog is just some silly words about what I got up to on my holiday, to me it feels so much more. I’m dedicating my time to something real, to something that has an effect on my life and others. Just like backpacking, it’s my own little adventure.
Blogging & Backpacking = Genuine Confused face when people say “It’s not for me”
When you’ve been backpacking or done a lot of traveling, your left dumbfounded by the fact that there are people out there who actually don’t want to travel. You’re so consumed by your own AMAZING experiences that you can’t understand why someone wouldn’t want to do what you have done. ‘Nah, not for me’ they say as you share a travel story with them about sleeping outdoors under the stars in a foreign country. You really really don’t want to be one of those ‘oh I’m a traveller I know everything’ arseholes, but you can’t help but really feel that as they pass up that opportunity, they are missing out on so much.
I get this same feeling about blogging. When I tell people I’m a blogger and they say ‘Nah, not for me’ I genuinely stand there with a confused look on my face. Because why isn’t it for you? Whats not to love? Blogging equals free-reign to write and rant about whatever you want. It’s an opportunity to express yourself through your own words and self-created images. Not to mention it opens the door to meeting incredible like minded and creative people.
‘It doesn’t interest me, I don’t see the point’ people have told me, and I try my hardest to suppress my little confused shocked face, because for me, just like travel and adventure, I don’t know what I would do without blogging.