Our trip to Sri Lanka has taken us over 1200 kilometers so far, as we hop from one location to another, exploring what every area has to offer. In the past few days we have gone from an emerging city to the heart of the jungle to the middle of the tea plantations and then all the way down to the beach.
It has been the trip of a lifetime, unique in every single way, including the fact that I chose to disconnect through it all.
I am never without my phone: constantly checking social media and my email no matter what I happen to be doing. And when I travel, the very first thing I do is buy a SIM card so I can stay connected and have access to maps and information.
For Sri Lanka, I decided that since everything was organized ahead of time and we have a tour guide with us alwaya, I wouldn’t need this. Plus, all the hotels have Wi-Fi anyway so I could wait till we got there.
I did not expect just how many hours we would be stuck in the bus with zero entertainment. Even my iPod refused to collaborate. It’s when being on a bus with 19 other people for 7 hours where it hits you that you need to know what is going on in the world. Or at least, you want to watch some funny videos.
But being on Facebook or any other similar application would have prevented me from getting to know the country and its people a little bit better. Because I am not on my phone at all times, I feel like I have seen more than what is on our tour itinerary.
Yes, the anxious need to check my phone at all times is still there, but it is getting better. It also sucks that something big has happened somewhere in the world and I feel I am the last to know about it (because it took forever to get to a place with Wi-Fi). But I am learning that sometimes it is okay to just forget about the rest of the world and go ahead and have my own adventure. I can read the news later (in the hotel lobby).
We truly place great emphasis on being connected in this time and age, but disconnecting doesn’t hurt anyone. A break is always needed to think about what is going on in one’s life (and all the issues going on in their head- like me and my work situation). So I am grateful for the chance to do that here.