Amiable Amiable’s post about having the financial resources to someday take that trip has inspired still another thought in my brain. (I believe this is my third thought this year, and it’s still only May!)
My wife and I don’t really have the money to travel. If one of those financial advisers from television ever paid us a visit and looked at our checkbook, she’d chain us to the furnace. When you go somewhere that involves airports and long flights and expensive hotel rooms, you come home with little more than a few souvenirs, some nice pictures, and a lot less money. Plus, you’re exhausted. At least that’s what I used to say. But now I look around our house at the tangible objects we’ve spent so much on and I think, what a waste. If I try to remember what I got for Christmas or my birthday last year, I can’t. But ask me about our first trip to Sicily in 2003, or Pompeii in 2005, or our two weeks in Japan in 2006, and I can tell you what we did almost every day — where we ate and what we had, the things we saw, the people we met. We didn’t come home with just souvenirs and pictures. We came home with memories, and that’s something we can’t misplace (well, not for a few more years, anyway).
My wife and I have blown a lot of money in some very dumb ways. Travel makes us feel smart, because what we get in return never loses its value. That’s why we know there are more great trips in our future, whether we can afford them or not. And that’s also why we avoid talking to financial advisers.