Dear Future Nam,
The next time you’re planning a vacation, and your eye begins to wander to far-off exotic locations… and you start to think about how much you want to hike the Banaue rice terraces in the Phillipines or set eyes on the Komodo Dragon in Indonesia… please do yourself one small favor…
DO NOT GO TO ASIA AGAIN.
Sure, Asia is wonderful. You loved Vietnam on your most recent go-around. It’s cheap. It’s beautiful. It’s different and fascinating. But two weeks in Asian paradise will cost you two to three weeks of miserable, head-pounding, gut-wrenching, life-destroying jet lag.
You think I’m exaggerating. Your memory has dimmed over the past copule of months, just like it did the year before and the year before that. That’s why I wrote this letter. I am not exaggerating. The exhaustion is mind numbing, and it’s not just the exhaustion. It’s the complete physical and emotional havoc that comes along with it.
Let me tell you how it will go. You will come back from a great trip with grand plans to recommit to your life – tackle work with renewed vigor, hit the gym, be a better, more awesome version of yourself. That’s what vacation does for you. Except when you go to Asia. You will be too sick to work out, too tired and drained to work. You will lie in bed and cry at 3 a.m. and curse yourself for pining after that Komodo Dragon.
IT’S NOT WORTH IT.
There are a lot of countries out there. Go to South America. Chile, Argentina, Ecuador. There are so many amazing things to see in countries in the same time zone. Future self, do yourself a huge favor and don’t go to Asia again.