The various moods of a Topdeck trip!
Don’t be surprised if you feel a bit nervous while waiting for your group to arrive. Things that may go through your mind: Have I picked the right trip? Who will be on it? Will I enjoy their company? These are all valid thoughts ...if you were traveling with a bunch of ex-convicts! You’ll be traveling with fun and interesting 18-30 somethings, so don’t worry!
Everyone arrives; you meet your Tour Leader & Driver (and maybe a few fellow travelers). Turns out you had nothing to worry about! No creeps here ...well except for that guy with a moustache wearing a woolen Jersey when it’s 30°C outside... Only joking! You feel at ease and anticipate an exciting few weeks ahead with this bunch. You get the odd feeling that you know you’ll soon be friends with all these ‘strangers’.
At several points along the way you'll be surprised by how knowledgeable your Tour Leader is and by what you learn. But most of all, you’ll be surprised by how much you can party and still be okay the next day! It’s all about the H2O; if you don’t keep your fluids up, it’ll hit you like a ton of bricks the next day!
You'll get comfortable with the whole crew and enjoy the ‘family-like’ atmosphere that the trip creates ...traveling, playing, eating, and sleeping together. (Get your mind out of the gutter! I don’t mean that type of sleeping ...maybe I should have said resting!?)
Let go of the daily pressures and stress of life back home - your only responsibility here “On The Road” is to have as much fun as you possibly can! Happiness is a mood that sticks with you the whole trip. It never leaves, but who would want it to? Even when that old lady tries to pickpocket you in Rome, or in Aussie when you realize that huge spider in your bathroom was only a few steps away from crawling on your head! It’s all life experience and gives you great stories to share!
The language/cultural differences between all the people on your trip is always a source of hilarity. The strangest one I’ve had was when the term for an innocent everyday act in one country was actual a sexual position in another!
You'll learn lots of cool things about people, places, objects, and yourself! Serious.
Why didn't I do this earlier? You'll be confused and annoyed you spent so much time working or studying when you could have booked this incredible experience much earlier. This fleeting mood doesn't last long, you'll be too pre-occupied by what's going on around you!
Experienced before challenging yourself to do something that scares you. (See the next mood!)
Elation hits you right after pushing yourself out of your comfort zone. You have several opportunities to do so! Skydive anyone? This wonderful mood also comes along after you realize that earlier that day you have been to some of the most amazing places in the world! Several trips include visits to official Man Made and Natural Wonders of the World. Bucket list: tick!
In Awe -
You’ll get the feeling that you're on the trip of a lifetime. Hanging out with amazing people, sharing amazing experiences. This is so much more than what the brochure could have ever described!
These trips are full on! The good thing is that they’re planned well, so that by the time you start to feel tired you’re at the point in the trip where the 2-3 night stays occur. You can also recharge on the bus - you'll realize that the hum of the engine is actually quite soothing and you can't help but nod off from time-to-time!
It's hard to believe you only met these people 3-4 weeks ago. They feel like close friends you don't want to lose.
It's a sombre mood when the trip comes to an end. You’ll still be extremely happy that you went on the trip and grateful for who you met and what you did. Important: Always plan a few nights at the final destination! This gives you time to hang out some more and say a proper goodbye to everyone. This also allows time to chill, reflect and absorb everything you’ve just experienced before you go back to your previous life (as a reinvigorated and improved version of your previous self that is).
Anticipation & Reflection -
You will be eager to plan your next trip and start to anticipate lots of new journeys. Even if you were never a big traveler before, a Topdeck trip is certain to ignited something in you!
You will also start to reflect back on your life. If you realize you can have more fun in 14 days on one of these trips than you can in 14 months back home, then something's amiss. What do you want to do next in life. Career change? Move cities? Move countries? Whatever it is, definitely plan your next Topdeck trip!
Ps. This was based on the two trips I’ve been on - the ‘Grand European’ & ‘Island Suntanner’ (Europe and Australia respectively).