I think that people travel for two reasons: to escape from daily life, or to use travel as an enabler.
My life spent vagabonding is not extraordinary. Extra-ordinary. I am doing exactly the same things I would do at home in France: programming, writing, reading. Except for my environment, nothing changes. This is how I want to travel. Not to runaway from my responsibilities, but to truly embrace them. Not to take pictures of dead monuments, but to raise my own awareness. To loose my identity, by embracing the ones I encounter. To work, be and offer my best.
When I graduated from college, I took all the money I saved and set on to make my own products while traveling. My parents never had a lot of money. I saved all I could from scholarships and an end-of-study internship. I choose to live a simple life, not because I am a masochist, but because I have been raised this way. All I need fits in a small bag. I do not feel well when I carry too much stuff. I don’t plan on buying a house. I don’t plan on buying a car. Except for one flight every one to three months maybe, I’m pretty sure my energy consumption is far less than a regular sedentary: traveling as a minimalist, you live off existing infrastructures, the clutter of others.
In terms of material possessions, the only thing I miss is my bike.
Living on less, you get more time to dedicate to what matters: your friends, your family, your life work.
Money-wise, relocating to cheaper countries gave me the opportunity to improve my living conditions while spending less. A smaller burn rate equals more time to make stuff.
Meeting new people and cultures every day, you constantly reinvent yourself. You confront problems you would never have faced in your home country. You live many lives in a short amount of time. I am definitely not the same person I was three months ago before arriving in Asia.
To me, a life of conscious traveling is a more sustainable life in many ways.