Why You Shouldn’t Plan Too Hard

For the third section of planning for my first backpacking trip, I learned a good lesson.  Ride with me.  So many of the backpacker blogs I’ve read over the last year and a half say “don’t make a hard itinerary, just go”.  Yeah yeah yeah I said, well I’ll only plan for a specific event on each day.  Keep in mind this is October, 2-3 months before my trip commences.  After mid terms were finished, I spent two weekends on Lonely Planet reading about what things are great to do in all the cities I’m going to visit and writing what I wanted to do in each city.  It ended up, the only thing I didn’t do was put events next to the dates as well as I had a rigid set up of when I was going to enter and exit different cities.  It was the opposite of the advice that I had been reading for months.  Oh Donald.

In November this all got shaken up.  I train corporate clients here in Austin through a coach I worked with that has a private business training corporate clients.  It’s a group fitness class so I handwrite my sessions following my template, in what happened the same notebook I was doing my Mexico planning in.  As the will of the travel gods would have it, I lost this notebook and because it was a Thursday and my next class there isn’t until Tuesday, that gave the janitor five days to throw my notebook away.  Of course when I show up Tuesday they don’t have it.  So all that two weekends of planning falls out of the window (or into the trash0.  Over the next month I am tempted to plan this out about but the rigors of grad school finals bring all of that to a screeching half.

The last couple of days before the trips starts after the semester I give a slight attempt at planning.  I just made a list of things I want to see in Mexico City and told myself I’ll decide on other city sights in the city prior.  That actually did not happen.  Going against all of my Donaldian ethics, no plans were made until the morning of with new travel friends, which made for a great experience!   From making friends with a Mexican family in nowheresville to staying an extra day in Mexico City because of new girls, my trip was very much so enhanced by not being too rigidly set by a schedule.  Have you ever dealt with this while you were out traveling?  Share with the community below!!