Skip to content

Crossroads and bridges; new ways to learn

April 6, 2009

Some of the greatest thinkers and writers in history often used travel and the act of travel as a metaphor for learning. Homer described Odysseus as being widely travelled, Dante journeyed through dark woods to learn, while Chaucer carried out tough pilgrimages. Through travel we learn, to learn we travel. The style of travel and the way we learn comes down to personal choice. Bumpy roads that jolt your body but inspire your mind, long winding roads that lead you up to unsurpassed views. Views you never thought possible.

While these choices seem limitless; sometimes the road can appear unclear, or uneventful. And then it’s time to move on. My journey through Asia began over six years ago. A continent I never thought of wanting to explore–before I got here.ย  Having lived in Japan and Korea, travelled as much as possible in Asia, and discovered a lot about the cultures, people, and myself; my journey has reached an end.


As part of a personal farewell to Asia, I had planned to do an ambitious overland journey taking me from China to Turkey, six months in total. During the last two months, even though I have been actively planning and mapping, reading and dreaming, something was slowly approaching, unwillingly.



Crossroads come for reasons often unknown. For me it arrived sooner than planned, reluctantly helped along by the economic conditions Korea is currently experiencing. Ten months ago when I planned my budget outlay for the trip, the Korean currency was relatively stable; it has been moody ever since. Volatile, untrustworthy, and costing me more than expected.

Reality hurts but it’s here for a reason. Even though I have vocalised my trip through Central Asia, I now have to postpone it till a later more financially stable date. Sadly this journey must be postponed, but happily another journey is being pushed forward.

Once through the crossroads it’s time to walk over the bridge.

In five weeks-early May-my luggage will be packed, apartment empty and work finished. In five weeks I will be crossing the bridge of singledom over to marriagedom and expatriating to the United States.ย  I’ve enjoyed my life in Asia, it is time to be with my boyfriend, who has been patiently waiting for me. The path on the bridge looks new and smooth if a little ordinary for me, but until I cross over it and take a good look, I will always be wondering.

by Cate

by Cate

My travels will still be a large part of my new life: as an expat in the US, my eventual trip through Central Asia, and now South America. Time will be on my side, and I plan to make good use of it. Not only will I continue blogging about travel and caffeine in the states, with any luck, I also plan to enter the realm of paid writing and travel writing. Career wise it’s time to cross over from being an amateur to a professional writer, no matter how long the walk on the bridge takes.

Keep following readers, I am by no means giving up the blog. Too many cafes to explore.

Caffeinated Traveller

  1. April 6, 2009 1:45 pm

    Hi Cate – I’ve enjoyed reading about your Asian travels and look forward to more travel/US posts! Whereabouts in the States will you be living? Happy wedding and good luck with the move! Liz

    • April 7, 2009 5:47 am

      Liz – thanks so much for your wishes. I hope to keep up with the insights only this time from the US. I’m sure I can find stuff there. I’ll be moving to Florida which is a bit nerve wrecking as I’m more of a polar bear not a hothouse flower ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Bear permalink
    April 6, 2009 8:54 pm

    Beatifully written.

    • April 7, 2009 5:48 am

      Bear – thanks for the comment. Wasn’t certain whether it made sense as my brain is a bit slushy due to a headcold.

  3. April 7, 2009 11:40 pm

    Wow! ~Sounds like you’re trading one adventure for another! I expect and pray you will find all the good things you hope for, Cate. In what area of the U.S will you be based?

    I am passing on to you the blogging Sisterhood Award that I received this week. It’s posted on “Footsteps” today. I’ll look for your e-mail address to send along more information…

  4. April 8, 2009 5:35 am

    congratulations and good luck ๐Ÿ™‚

    a postponement of a trip when u’ve been planning it for a while is a pain – but as long as there is some travel and new places…

  5. April 8, 2009 1:06 pm

    Heather- Thanks, one adventure for another can’t be a bad trade off. And thanks for the Sisterhood Award ๐Ÿ™‚

    Ms N – you are right – as long as there is some travel elsewhere. Thanks for the wishes.

  6. Erica Johansson permalink
    April 9, 2009 8:35 am

    Beautiful blog post! Things don’t always turn out as we plan, but when one window closes another one usually opens.

    I wish you all the best with your new life in Florida, ‘on the other side of the bridge’, and good luck with your writing ambitions!

  7. April 11, 2009 3:49 am

    Erica – true how life changes course when least expected. I always used to love change, it made things so exciting. This change is thrilling with a touch of uncertainty. Just as long as I don’t get fat doing nothing. Thanks for the wishes.

Comments are closed.