The 5 Stages of Travel Grief.


No one ever tells you about the heavy come down after a super long trip. Living like a carefree vagabond can make you feel somewhat like a non-productive member of society, like a fun addict. You can get away with things that aren’t quite proper practice in the real world. For example: having your first cocktail in the morning. Spending your day slathered in tanning oil checking out the bae’s, or better yet, not brushing your hair because your largest responsibility for the day is 1.drinking a fresh picked coconut and 2.finishing that awful Nicholas Sparks novel you found in the hostel’s book swap.

I’ve never done Heroin, but I am willing to go out on a limb and say that the holiday withdrawal, as you make your transition back into the professional world, is probably quite similar: Night sweats, contemplation of life and debilitating depression that makes you stay in bed, shovel heaps of popcorn in your mouth and watch Anthony Bourdain episodes over and over again. You start to question if it was even worth going in the first place because now you feel super unsettled. Something changed in you. Aside from Jet lag, you go through the actual  5 stages of grief:


1. Denial and Isolation

Much like Bon Iver’s post breakup winter cabin retreat, you are a slave to your bed. You actually fear that your skin may begin growing into your Ikea mattress. Your phone is ringing off the hook but you put it on silence, you don’t want to see anyone. The only people you want in your life right now are Anthony Bourdain and Orville Redenbacher. You continue only ordering Thai food takeout for a week straight and greeting the delivery boy in Thai, “SAWADEE” as you bow your head with prayer hands even though he’s a young Guatemalan man.

2. Anger

You start to hate your only friend Anthony Bourdain. WHO DOES HE THINK HE IS?? He thinks he deserves the world’s coolest job? He can just go wherever he wants? He can just go take Ayahuasca in Peru for work? and eat traditional feasts all day? Oh and you ORVILLE with your carefree popcorn toss. Making me all fat with your buttery airpopped legacy.I don’t even think you’re alive anymore but I hate you too.     orville




3. Bargaining

Your mind frantically races like a lunatic. “I cant go back to work tomorrow. I need to heal. I should have stayed.  I should have just gotten that Visa and went to NZ with all the other kids and worked in a Ski Resort for the season (I cant ski but I’ll learn, I don’t even care.). I shouldn’t have spent so much money on stupid elephant pants. I’m totally going to apply to a job in Shanghai to go teach ESL right now. They give you free accomodation,  Im not even a teacher, but I’ll lie. I dont even want to go to China but I dont care. No one will know! Why am I home? Who decided this was reality? Is this going to be forever? Do I belong in a mental institution??”


4. Depression

This is self explanatory. You’re back to the grind….thought about picking up smoking cigarettes because you’re bored…….Lovin’ this traffic…….such a pleasant person to be around, yes please come over and listen to me sit in silence. *bursts into tears*


5. Acceptance

Normalcy is returning. You realize that you’re totally going to be okay. You’ve been back to work for a few months now, building that savings back up. The jet-lag is long gone and your trip is all starting to fade into a memory that doesn’t even really seem like it happened to begin with. It’s fun to talk about and reflect. Social life, resurfaced. Tan is gone, but you’re okay.

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