Travel fatigue (and how we’re getting over it)
2016 hasn’t got off to the best of starts. We’ve been dogged by illness. We’ve both had a bout of food poisoning or a stomach bug, we’re not sure which, and I have been nursing a head cold since the beginning of the year. We’re tired and losing our fitness. We’re missing fresh vegetables, salads and fruit juice without sugar in it. We’ve just reached Rajasthan, India’s must-see state and we can’t be bothered with it.
Everything just becomes another fort, another train ride, another thali, another guesthouse.
We’ve hit a travel slump.
What’s wrong with us? We’re seeing and doing amazing stuff everyday, yet the annoyances of India (to be shared in a future post) are starting to get on top of us.
When you first start travelling, everything is exciting and new. You’re meeting new people, visiting amazing sites and eating exciting food. But at some point it all becomes a bit routine: you get up, see the sights, have the same conversations about where you’ve been, how long you’re on the road for and what you do, pack your bag and get on another bus/train to the next destination and do it all over again.
So what do we do? Give up and hop of the plane home?
All of this is telling us we need a rest, a change of routine and a detox.
The longest we have stayed in one place is 8 days spent at the wonderful Olaulim Backyards, over Christmas and New Year. On average we move on every 3 or 4 days and changing locations is tiring. We can’t remember the last time we fully unpacked our backpacks but we seem to spend a lot of time repacking them. There is a pressure to see as much of a place as possible but ultimately the sites all blur into one.
So we’ve decided to stand still. We’re now holed up in Bundi, a little town of narrow lanes lined with Brahmin-blue houses.
There is a lake, hills, bazaars, temples and yet another fort. But we’ve not seen any of that. We’re lazing in the grounds of the haveli in which we’re staying, reading books. Yesterday we went to a tourist restaurant for pizza and were joined by another couple in our guesthouse. We whiled away the afternoon sipping coffee and chatting, enjoying the view from the rooftop. And because my stomach has yet to return to normal, I had cornflakes, banana and milk for dinner last night. And it was great.
We are allowing ourselves the time to rest and recuperate, to think about what we want, which right now is somewhere to cook (how we miss it) a healthy, sugar-free meal with crunchy vegetables and a crisp salad; access to yoga and hiking in the hills.
If we find that we’ll move on, but for now we’re staying put.