Traveling can be a really exciting prospect. When your departure date gets close, it's hard to contain yourself.
You imagine that your trip is going to look something like this.
And you're really stoked about the great deal you found on your flight and hotel.
When you arrive on your preferred mode of conveyance, you find yourself in excellent spirits.
You even try to excite the people around you, hoping that your joy is infectious.
Suddenly, reality sets in, and everything changes.
Because while traveling can be really amazing, it can also be full of unforeseen challenges and pitfalls.
First of all, you usually pack way, way too much.
And when you finally arrive, you're hit with an extreme case of jet lag.
Really, really bad jet lag.
Luckily, you can easily make your way out of this international airport, which isn't crowded at all.
And then you have a relaxing ride on public transportation to look forward to.
After you get to your hotel and finally have a chance to rest, you realize that you may have packed all the wrong things.
And you may have forgotten to brush up on the local language.
Never one to quit, you decide to console yourself by thinking about all the great food you're going to try. One of the best parts of traveling is eating, and much of the time, new food is really, really good.
Except when it's not – Did no one tell you that that dish was actually made of tarantulas?
And sometimes, it's really, really not. Don't worry – we know you can't control what your stomach does after seven courses of curry.
After recovering from unplanned food poisoning, you might still be in good spirits. Your next plan is to unleash your international, cosmopolitan fabulousity on the locals.
You also plan to make it rain – if you can't eat quite yet, why not shop?
The only problem is, you have no idea where you're going, and all the street signs are in the local language.
And the city's streets are packed with people, none of whom seem like they have time to lend a helping hand.
In an attempt to garner sympathy, you might feel compelled to do something that will impress the locals.
But then you just end up embarrassing yourself.
With your last remaining energy, you decide to just suck it up and act like a tourist, traveling to difficult places to get great photos.
But being a tourist has its downsides, too.
Your attempts at interacting with your natural surroundings don't really go as planned.
And you kind of failed at the whole "visit national landmarks" thing as well.
At this point, you begin wondering if you should have done what your grandmother told you to do and booked your trip with a tour group.
But you're just not a tour group kind of person. Filled with a renewed sense of purpose, you decide to head to a local bar. There, you meet locals who seem to understand you.
You might even feel the need to get a tattoo to commemorate your trip. We advise against this.
And no matter how tough your trip was, how many challenges you faced, or how many times you threw up in an alley at the night market, you can't wait to do it all again – Because you're a traveler, through and through.