Your daughter left home as princess and returned home from volunteering abroad as an ugly frog. How do expert travelers stay young and beautiful?
Every time my nieces say, "Uncle Andy, I want to travel the world like you," I cringe, shrink in my chair, and hide my face, thinking to myself, "Is there anyway to stop them from traveling the planet?"
The last frickin’ thing on the planet I want my nieces to do is travel the planet the same as me!!! Why? Simple: I am not brave; I am afraid that they have a great chance of become an ugly frog.
My beautiful nieces – with clear, fresh, young skin and full of Indiana down-on-the-farm happiness – might return home "BROKEN."
AAAAAGH! Not my nieces, not my family! I want to protect them from harm, save them from becoming a hippie-dippie dumb shit.
In world traveler parlance, I don't want my nieces to "lose the plot."
To be “of sound mind and body” – that is what we want from our children, friends, family and neighbors. We want the whole world to be “of sound mind and body."
However, as we long-term world travelers know, many a traveler loses the plot, goes bonkers, starts drinking, becomes jaded, and get 10 times more tattoos than needed. What started out as a dream of world travel turned into a nightmare.
We can thrive as world travelers, or we can dive for home.
We can travel abroad, becoming incredibly knowledgeable, globally aware, and the best of the best – the bohemian Renaissance man or woman …
… OR …
We can become a jaded, black-hearted person who believes everyone is a thief and never trusts anyone.
Why do world travelers become ugly?
They enter countries full of dust and water so polluted you can neither drink it nor or shower in it safely.
The USA is incredibly clean. When people ask me what I love about the USA, my first thought is my mother’s clean sheets. I the feeling of getting under the clean covers of a bed in Orland, Indiana, where my mother's whole house has that clean feeling.
Travelers slowly become like the people in the countries they visit. Sooner or later, we get lazy. The locals don't shower, so we don't shower. Cleaning our clothes is expensive, or we need to wash them ourselves – everything becomes so complicated. Just shaving is a hassle! We have no mirror or no light. It is annoying to see my face in the bright airplane restroom and discover many a blackhead.
What is the solution?
1. Hot water – Refuse to shower or bath in cold water. Hot water is the 8th Wonder of the World. It is the secret of beautiful skin: fresh, free from critters, germs and bacteria-infested water.
2. Clean bath supplies – Use a clean wash rag and clean towel, and clean the shower – Don't get lazy. (Buy a traveler’s washcloth, the Djampe.)
3. Clean clothes – Change your clothes daily. Wash them in hot water and dry them in the ultraviolet rays of the sun to make them truly clean. We must rinse the clothes and dry the clothes.
Cleanliness is next to godliness. This is not a joke!
Travelers’ Tip: Carry a bucket and hot water heater with you so that you can always bathe and wash your clothes and bath supplies with clean, hot, soapy water. There’s nothing like it.
Thanks to the good gods, we hobos can thrive by learning the rules of travel, common sense on steroids.
Andy Lee Graham with 15 years of thriving on the road, and with no reason to dive for home because I get more handsome each day.
PS: Don't allow your son or daughter to return home a toad.