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I’ve Traveled As Long As Some Travelers Have Been Alive

I’ve always kind of thought of myself as a young traveler. Not anymore.

I was sitting in a Rotterdam dorm room — Europe is too expensive to get a private room on a journalist’s chit — talking to a couple of British girls about the usual shit you talk to people in dorm rooms about. They were young and rightfully seemed a little proud that they got jobs and saved up enough money to travel when all their other friends were languishing away in “uni.”

I mentioned that I began traveling young as well, that I began in 1999, in fact.

Usually, when I say things like this in dorm rooms I get ohhs and ahhhs. These girls looked at me kind of mortified, as if I’d just said something grotesque.

In a mere moment it became clear why.

“Uh…when were you born?” I stammered.

1997.

For the first time ever I realized that I am not a young person anymore.

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Filed under: Perpetual Travel, Travel Diary

About the Author:

Wade Shepard is the founder and editor of Vagabond Journey. He has been traveling the world since 1999, through 83 countries. He is the author of the book, Ghost Cities of China, and contributes to Forbes, The Diplomat, the South China Morning Post, and other publications. has written 3212 posts on Vagabond Journey. Contact the author.

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Wade Shepard is currently in: Bandar Seri Begawan, BruneiMap