I was 22 when I came to London over 6 years ago. I gave the parents a kiss goodbye and went in search of travel, excitement, memories, barrels of alcohol and perhaps a girl or 2 to wake up to along the way. The typical Australian traveler.
But what happens when your heart skips a beat for another while travelling? What would happen if you had to choose between this new found love and returning home? Would it be so easy to say goodbye and part ways? Or perhaps, like me, you’ve found your perfect travel companion.
I am an Australian lad who has gone and fallen in love with a British girl and we’ve both decided to explore the world far before settling down with the house and kids. Definitely everything I want in a girl.
We met at a pub in Brixton, London after a very boozy day at the Ascot races. At first we dated casually – we both had our own travel plans already in place so decided to keep things casual and ‘see where we ended up’. We both had been bitten by the travel bug from early on, which at times, had us on either side of the world.
I did a 3-month American road-trip and was always back in Aus for 3 months to get a decent summer. I thought after 6 months it would fizzle out and come to an end. It didn’t. This wasn’t just a fling. We met straight back up and continued to see each other. Then it was her turn to take off on a 7-month trip but we stayed in touch as best we could until she came back. Her first port of call after arriving back into Heathrow? – My place.
For us, It’s never been the typical relationship by any means. Like when I called her and told her that on our second date she will meeting James Franco. Or like when I took a deckhand job on a yacht in Spain in summer 2015 while she had taken a nanny job for 3 American kids. This had her all over London and trips throughout Europe. Or like when I was doing nightshift at a hotel, skyping her while she was in Thailand with terrible signal only getting every third word.
Yes, this was pretty normal for us as we have basically done 3-6 months together and then apart and while the times apart were tough we don’t believe in holding each other back from anything we want to do. It seems the further we go, the more people we meet and the more we drink, the more we fall for each other.
This has so far worked well for us and after a few years now we’re still so excited to be together and see where we’ll end up next. And apparently I am not the only one to be in this situation.
I once met a guy called Michael from Christchurch. Now 38 and married to an English girl with 2 kids he said “My mates went back years ago and I’m still here 14 years later”. Michael says he’s very happy here and intends to stay. With Europe on the doorstep he still continues to travel and now calls New Zealand his holiday destination and goes back twice a year including Christmas.
A mate of mine, Will from Brisbane, is a producer and set off on his travels back in 2011. He is currently dating Hannah who is originally from Gloucestershire and another lover of seeing this amazing world. They’re both loving the crazy London life with “No intention of going back anytime soon”.
It seems more and more people from all over the world are no longer doing the “year or 2” stint but trying so much harder continue their journeys and keep the travelling life ahead. And it’s not surprising why. It’s a highly addictive life that has us constantly learning with new surroundings, languages, people and culture. Sometimes challenging but mostly a truly rewarding lifestyle that shouldn’t be missed!
Getting on that plane was by far one of the best decision I’ve ever made. The places, experiences and the people I’ve met these past years have all made me who I am today and I don’t intend of giving it up just yet. I now hope to continue to travel and see the world with a bag on my back and my girl by my side.
They say if you travel far enough, you’ll meet yourself. But perhaps when you travel far enough you eventually meet the person that was always meant for you.
This is where I find myself. I’ll not only continue to travel… I’ll to travel with the girl I love by my side.