To me, comfort in planning a vacation to a new destination is planning it all online beforehand down to what bars and restaurants I want to try, researching then researching some more places to stay at, and renting a car to explore other areas as well.
Well Asia is not a big car rental country like America. You pretty much have to use their public transportation. Or pay EXORBITANT taxi fees. (And no Uber there! Uber has saved my tired feet, saved me exorbitant parking fees, and always gives me reassurance, just because it's a relatively cheap and reliable service that is always available. )
How can I plan when I don't know how long anything will take me? Meaning how confused will I be? Will my Google maps work? What if it doesn't work in an area or subway? (like for finding the right train). How hard will it be? Sure it looks easy on the YouTube videos!
I mean I would like to go to Hiroshima which is a 4 hour train ride one way but I'm not sure how hard/confusing it will be to make this trip in one day, which would be by aim to avoid missing the last train and spending the night when I have already paid for a hotel in Tokyo. And good luck not getting swindled when they find out you are American.
I am not a very go with the flow type on vacation. I like a plan. I am a planner. I like knowing what I will do that day, because bottom line is I hate wasting my (PRECIOUS!) time. I worry about having different vacation styles. (the husband and I are very in sync on vacations since we've taken so many together and have similar interests, but this one is with the 19 year old son). What if our vacation styles are vastly different? This is a big one, taking a trip with someone and not knowing their "style". For one, PLEASE don't be a complainer!
Planning does get exhausting though. I like to do it...to a point. Until it starts feeling like another chore or to do list (and on a 2 week trip, I imagine it may). I just read an article about a young woman who decided to take a year off and travel the world (how can so many young people seem to afford this?) Anyways, she lasted 6 weeks. Her biggest dislikes were the loneliness and the DAILY PLANNING.
I just want a MANUAL. Tell me exactly what to pack and prepare for. How to fill out a customs form. Where to go and how to get there. What apps to download. How to deal with the oddities I am not used to, like different foods and customs? What if I get lost? Must make sure to print out my directions written in the native language!
And of course for my 1st trip abroad I pick TWO countries, both where English is not widely spoken! (Japan and South Korea) -because my thought has always been- if I am going to be in that area anyway, why not make the best of that long painful flight?
Every travel blog is perfect. The people are all so beautiful, well spoken, and cute. My aim is to do a travel blog for the REAL people, having a REAL experience. I'm not one of those worldly people. I don't have it all figured out.
Traveling internationally as of now is about the bravest and most nerve wracking thing I have ever done. (aside from joining the military). I bristle when I hear people mention oh so casually that "Oh I was just there on a business trip last month". Like it was nothing. After I have planned, worried, researched, and saved for YEARS. MUST BE NICE.
I'm interested to find out which of the two countries I will have an easier time in. I promise to make videos for when I am at my worst and most confused, not my fake Instagram best. Hey, maybe I'm onto something! My own Youtube channel perhaps?
My hope for this trip? That it strikes up something in my uninspired heart. That it changes me as a person. Maybe leaves me a bit more brave, adventurous, or outgoing. That it shows me that there's WAY more to life than the blah one I've been living. I really need some inspiration. I need the spark inside me reignited before it burns out for good and then it's too late.
Hopefully this is NOT the trip of a lifetime. Hopefully there are many more. (And hopefully I can find time to actually enjoy myself!)