Years ago, I bought a National Geographic map of the world. My idea was to buy multi-color push pins for the places I’ve been vs. the places I want to visit so I could proudly hang it above my desk in lieu of a corkboard. Yeah, I’m nerdy like that. I was so motivated, I took the rolled-up map to a local Kinko’s and had it mounted on foamcore. To take it one step further, I even toyed with the idea of having it framed, but that seemed a little OCD, even for me.
But a funny thing happened on the quest to proudly display my wanderlust.
I couldn’t bring myself to place a pin on the map. It just seemed wrong, in a “defacing public property” kind of way. Here was a beautiful map of the world for my enjoyment and I was going to turn it into Pinhead, that creepy guy from “Hellraiser” (in the spirit of full disclosure, I did Google this – not being one for scary movies and all).
So now, after a year of sitting on my dresser it sits on my desk, staring back at me when I work from home. I find my eyes will settle on a region — one day I’m studying the African continent and thinking about a hike up Kilimanjaro, the next I’ll ponder what it would be like to sail the Caribbean, plotting a course through both the British and U.S. Virgin Islands. And I think, would I be able to do this if the map was littered with pins? Maybe I just need niftily-designed push pins that are map-worthy and that will entice me to take a stab. Or maybe I should focus instead on a creating a wish list/bucket list instead (after all, my passport is a pretty good reminder of the places I’ve been).
So a question to my fellow travelers: how do you track your travels? Do you keep a log/journal of places you’ve visited? Or do you have an ever-growing bucket list of places to go?