When you realize that your job, your college education, and your drug habits have all failed to make you an even slightly interesting person, it's time to grab a ruck-sack and head off to a country that will hopefully force a personality onto you.
Just The Facts
- Backpacking is a "holiday" for people who can quit their jobs for a vacation.
- When speaking to a backpacker, never refer to it as something so trivial as a "holiday" - call it "travelling" or "seeing the world" or "my time abroad".
- But a rose by any other name...is still just another way of delaying adulthood.
Backpacking - Motives
Hardship, mental stress and physical exhaustion all build character. But for some, these struggles don't come easy: They have to be sought out, accosted and wrestled to the floor. To really "get the most out of life," rich kids and insufferable hipsters have to spend a few months living like poor people in third world countries.
"Walk the Earth, like Kane from Kung-Fu - you know, as long as my iPhone works there."
With $3000 in the bank, a credit card, a guide book and a patronizing love for indigenous music shimmering beneath the surface, so do the wild douchebags venture forth into the world to live like paupers - provided, of course, that paupers live in guide book recommended hostels with hot running water, free Wi-Fi, clean beds and guided tours to local archeological sites to help you really experience your new culture without running into anybody actually from said culture.
How to Backpack
Some rules you should follow to successfully complete your "travels":
1. Don't stay in any one place for longer than a week. Everything that can be learned about a culture can be done in approximately seven days, including 20 hours of hangover time and 35 hours of blogging.
Yeah, I only spent 20 minutes there but I blogged about it for weeks!
2. Don't trust the locals: They're only there to rip you off, steal your belongings and sacrifice you to their ancient gods. Unfortunately, in many places one is obliged to do so.
3. Don't drink the water. Wherever you are. It'll make you infertile or something. We don't know what these fucking locals are drinking, but it sure ain't the water because there are filthy children everywhere. Or the salads. For some reason, there's something wrong with salads in countries that aren't yours.
4. Bring a cane. This has the double use of aiding your walk from the bus station to your hostel, as well as making you look wise and worldly to dirty unshaven backpacking chicks.
God, that cane makes him look a shaman, and that faux-hawk makes him look...well the cane is pretty hot, anyway.
5. Take pictures. Of absolutely everything. Exotic fountains, road signs, different electrical sockets, it's all relevant and all important. Remember, there are no bad pictures, and there are also never too many, thanks to Facebook bulk-uploader! Finally, remember to be pissy and entitled if they don't get enough comments.
Everybody cares about your "journey," they just don't know it yet!