An Ode to My Favourite Travel Companion

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A good travel companion can turn a mediocre holiday into an unforgettable one. They’ll be the ones coaxing you out of bed the morning after a huge piss-up while it’s still dark outside, and they’ll be the ones suggesting a bar or cafe they’d read about.

A good travel buddy will make a long train journey something enjoyable, and ensure that no matter how boring the museum or how crowded the temple – you’ll have somebody there to suffer with you.

Since March of 2009, I have been blessed with the best travel companion I could ever have hoped for. Fallon has not only been my girlfriend and (clichéd as it might sound) best friend – she’s also been the person who has kept the travel bug alive and well in me, even when I’ve been back in a country I grew up in.

In January, after one last hurrah in New Zealand and Fiji, Fallon and I will go our separate ways. There’ll be tears and for a long while it’ll hurt a hell of a lot – but if I’ve learned one thing above all others from my time with Fallon, it’s that it is possible for something great to come to an end and to still appreciate all that it meant to you and all that you learned from it.

So rather than indulge in a long winded and emotionally charged post about why I’ll be sad that it has to come to an end – I’m just going to post some of my favourite pictures of our many adventures together. Because at the end of the day nothing lasts forever – but memories of good times go damned close.

Thanks for showing me the world and sharing my adventures with me Fallon, and I’m glad we’ve got a few more in store before we both go on adventures of our own.

Standing at the Grand Canyon. October 2009
Being silly in the Royal Botanical Gardens. January 2010.
Fallon manning up at the Standing Stones in my hometown. March 2010
Sharing a kiss at the Mud Festival. July 2009.
Savouring the little things. Delivery McDonalds in Jeju. August 2009.
I survived the 19km Route of the Hiawatha. September 2009.

One of the things I’ve learned from Fallon, and I think we all learn from a good travel companion, is that sometimes you need to step outside of your comfort zone and try something new. The above picture, taken after the hardest ride of my life, was one of many ‘firsts’ that I let myself be talked into.

A good companion helps you make new friends
Scuba diving the Great Barrier Reef. September 2010.
Fresh off completing the 14km City 2 Surf. August 2010.
Sharing a kiss in Vegas. October 2009.

A good travel companion takes you to places you might not ever have thought of going. I’ve been lucky enough to visit Las Vegas and the Grand Canyon with Fallon, but I’ve also gone off the beaten track. I’ve toured Portland and explored Kuranda. I’ve spent a weekend on rainy Bigeumdo and taken a two month long Spanish course for the hell of it.

A good travel companion goes above and beyond. They fetch you a bucket when you’re sick, spot you a few dollars when you’re short for lunch, and let you know when you’re being lazy or just being a little bit of an ass. They push you to explore something beyond your own bedroom or hotel room, and when it’s time to part ways – they leave you better for your time together.

When we go our separate ways I won’t slump back into being the lazy layabout I was a few years ago. Quite the contrary. I have a thirst for travel now that I’ve never known before, and I don’t intend to stop until I’m too old and tired to enjoy it anymore.

So thank you Fallon. Thank you for the wonderful adventures we’ve had to this point and for the exciting ones we’ve yet to have.

And when it’s time that we travel our own paths and have adventures without one another, I hope all of yours are every bit as exciting and fascinating as the ones we’ve had together.

Thank you for being you and helping me to be the person I am today.

But most of all, and I know it’s clichéd, thanks for a lifetime of memories and a friendship I know I’ll have long after we say our goodbyes in Fiji next year.

Cheesiness at the May 18 Memorial Park. July 2009.
All dressed up in 80s style. June 2009.
Posing at Walnut Creek Canyon. October 2009.
Holding hands at Seaside. October 2009.
The night I met a girl called Fallon and had absolutely no idea how important she would be. January 2009.
My favourite photo of us. Jejudo. August 2009.
Drunk and in love. April 2009.

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