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Sunday, 21 May 2017

Golden Gap Years - call of the wild or call of the world?

Gap years, ah yes, all those young backpackers traipsing around South-East Asia, drinking out of buckets, attending full moon parties, staying in hostels and eating 2 minute noodles.  Sounds fun right?  OK well maybe not the 2 minute noodle bit, but who doesn't think about packing it all in and heading off for a year (or 3) at least once a week.  Surely not just me? And how old is too old to take a gap year?  The answer is never. Hello Golden Gap years!

In fact, aren't gap years wasted on the young?  All those amazing places and too hangover to enjoy them.  Oh that's right, been there done that and it was great fun.  I can remember several holidays which included a fair portion of nights out drinking and days recovering before doing it all again.  Wouldn't change a thing, at the time, it was far more appealing than visiting the Louvre.  Although the Louvre is pretty cool.

Machu Picchu - Emi's 50th

30 years ago, I thought I had to travel whilst young because I'd be too old and it would be no fun at all when I got to 40.  And as for 60 - well that only meant one thing, 1 foot in the nursing home door.  But guess what, travel is still exciting!  I still want to go places, see things, do things (maybe not drink out of a bucket, but hey, never say never).  Yep, the style of travel changes.  The passion and excitement doesn't.

So Golden Gap years have become a thing.  Kids have left home, divorce, retrenchment, pissed off with work, whatever and you just want more than a miserly 4 weeks a year (my favourite perk at work, being able to purchase 4 additional weeks of lifestyle leave).  The only question is, to take an extended period of time off and then go back to work, or start off retirement with a couple of years roaming the world?
50th trip to India and the Taj
A major regret that people in old age have is that they didn’t travel enough when they were young and had the energy to. Travel requires time and money, as well as energy and reality just gets in the way which is why I guess we don't get all the travelling that we might like to do when we are in our late teens and twenties done. 

We've met so many amazing people along the way who are well over 50 and are doing so many adventurous things and good on them!  Who can forget the gorgeous Val and dashing Don in Nepal.  They were and continue to be, our inspiration!  And good on Sharon and Rob who have just returned from a second hiking trip to Nepal.  You go guys!

Val and Don in Pokhara Nepal - our inspiration


So when and where to go?  The next few years we are hoping to save, buy our practice caravan (started looking) and do lots of shorter trip around Oz.  But who knows, I did catch myself looking at grey nomad jobs the other day.  That or win lotto. 
Next tattoo maybe?
Bugger. Back to work tomorrow.


  1. Haha....what a fantastic 'trip'...I concur and I'm over the travel and the thought. ..but alas like you it's back to work in the morning...enjoy ������⛵

    1. I think we all need to take a leaf out of Carolyn's book and sail off into the sunset.