Someone once asked me to pick my absolute favorite travel quote. At the time, this seemed like an impossible task. So impossible, in fact, that I couldn’t even give an answer. Rather, I just stared at them as if they asked me to pick my favorite pair of boots…(yes, I just went there).
Looking back it’s obvious I just didn’t have the answer to the question. I didn’t know what my favorite quote was! Sure, there are a ton of quotes I love, but a hands-down-favorite? Pshh…
But then, like almost every good thing that has ever happened in my life, it just fell into my lap one day. I honestly don’t remember where or how I found it, and prior to writing this post I had never even bothered to research where it came from. But you know, they say there are times in your life when you just know when something is right. This was definitely one of them.
“Once you have traveled, the voyage never ends, but is played out over and over again in the quietest chambers. The mind can never break off from the journey.” –Pat Conroy
One of my biggest fears before leaving everything behind to teach English in Spain for a year was not being able to find a job when I returned. I honestly thought prospective employers would throw out my resume because I “didn’t have enough experience” or because I wouldn’t appear “serious” enough. I even get a lot of emails (which I love, dear readers!) from people who are considering going abroad but are worried about some of the same things I was.
In all honesty, I was fully prepared to join the masses of the unemployed upon my return from Spain last June, but the truth is… I walked right into a job. Like, I had an interview set up before the jet lag even wore off, and had a job offer well before I had a place to live.
Maybe I was just lucky, but given the reality of the state of our economy…maybe not. I’m just going to go ahead and believe that what I had gained in real world experience during my time abroad more than made up for what I lacked in “business experience.” I mean, would you believe me if I told you that during one of my interviews I talked ONLY about traveling? I repeat…nothing about my job skills, the job I was applying for, or my past internships and experience…ONLY TRAVELING.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve always personally believed that a well-traveled person is not only better prepared for life, but also for the workforce, but I seriously doubted that most employers shared my same values. Guess what? They do.
The best free thing to do in Malaga? A sweaty hike up to the Mirador de Gibralfaro, located on the backside of the old castle walls. You’ll quickly realize how out of shape you are and briefly consider laying off the tapas for a while (yeah right), but it’s worth every last gasp of the salty sea air it takes to make it to the top.