Travelling with Your Husband 101

'For better, for worse... in sickness and in health' 
Things you should really know before you go travelling with your husband. 
After the whirlwind of wedding planning and the Big Day itself, it's very common to feel like you crave a bit of  'normal life' to resume where you sit on the sofa with a cup of tea and talk about anything that doesn't involve seating charts, RSVPs or Order of Service. Hard to imagine, right? Despite a wedding being all about the new Mr and Mrs, quality time isn't really top of the agenda with suppliers, bridal parties and guests all around. Back in July 2016, shortly after our 'I Do's', we had the chaos of packing up our house and finishing our jobs before we departed for our six-month honeymoon. The single most aspect of the trip I was most excited about? Having my new husband all to myself. Totally selfish I know but quite normal newlywed behaviour I'm told. Going from one extreme to another, we were used to seeing each other briefly in the morning before work and a few hours in the evening, to suddenly living in each others pockets 24/7. That can probably be a test of any relationship. So, I'm pleased to say we passed that test! I was apprehensive going into it though as I've travelled with family/friends in the past and know that those little annoying quirks can become monumental when you endure an intense period of time in each others company. 

My advice to couples or newlyweds on travelling together is to set some ground rules - a bit like when you first move in together to establish what your 'normal' is going to be. Ours are pretty simple but they made for conflict free travelling for us and coming home after six months even more in love than when we left.

Alone time. 
  • Say if the other is doing something to bug you. Don't let it fester.
  • You don't have to do EVERYTHING together. Time apart is normal and do the world of good.
  • Silence is a virtue. 
  • Any whiff of a disagreement (invariably involving a map and directions) diffuse with a joke, it's not worth it. You're on holiday!!
  • Take time to chill, it doesn't have to be all go go go.
  • Don't wake the other up if they're succeeding in sleeping on public transport. Even if you're not.
  • Don't sweat the small stuff, this is a once in a lifetime experience so don't ruin it with tension, bottling things up or being grumps*
*exceptions being: when suffering sunburn or on after an overnight bus, then grumpy you can both be. Together. 

Dirty talk. 
This is the shit part of travelling (excuse the pun). Conversations around bowel movements will become a regular part of your day-to-day life. Each to their own but this was a new thing to bring us, ahem, closer (I have known of couples who would keep each other company whilst doing their business but this horrifies me to the core!). The fact of the matter is you're likely to have some "concerns" whilst your away and 'for better, for worse', you're there to look out for the other. That may be actually looking out for the next 'banos' in the case of Delhi belly, running out to the shop for toilet paper or simply scheduling regular loo stops along the way. Soon you become anaesthetised to the crap-chat a bit like I'm sure new mothers feel when monitoring a baby's nappy activity. Soon you just get passed caring. But in my experience running the tap, playing music and pocket tissues can make some situations more bearable. 

Home sickness.
When I was travelling, I was asked if I felt home sick. A common question among backpackers I guess and I'm sure if I were travelling on my own it would be a different story but it occurred to me that I wasn't the least bit homesick. That's because, put simply (and prepare to gag) my husband is my home. Wherever we are I have all the comfort, support and love that I could need.  Missing the occasional home luxury? Yes. Marmite, in fact, most mornings. Whilst it's great keeping up with the folks at home via our mass WhatsApp group and FaceTime when wifi allows, my bottom lip doesn't wobble at the end of a call or my heart feel heavy at the thought of them. I'm more excited to head off and make some more memories so they can live vicariously through us. 

Sharing is caring (or more room for shoes) 
When travelling with a partner, the likelihood is you're going to be sharing a fair amount. Now I've already covered the too-much-information aspects and I'll avoid the lets-not-go-there, so here I'm talking technology. Cameras, iPads, GoPros...however you're choosing to capture your trip, the good news is it's half to carry. Like most men, I imagine, Mr A likes to take control of the technology stuff so whilst he hunts for plug sockets to recharge the umpteen batteries and stashes them in his daypack to carry around whichever city we're in that day, I get the good end of the deal: more room in my luggage for extra clothes and shoes!

Your Personal Photographer
Not everyone will be blogging on their journey but photography is such an important keepsake from all travel. Therefore prepare for become your wife's photographer and in my case, be grateful for your husband laying on a dusty floor, bare knees on the unforgiving concrete and patience in working out your best side. Make sure you capture each other living the trip and get pictures together. We have surprisingly few which aren't selfies and don't feature my double chin.

Bed Wars
Most couples have a side of the bed each, the side where your phone charger resides and bedside drawers consist of old receipts and hand cream (in my case). But when travelling, routine goes out the window and whether you prefer to sleep near the door/bathroom/window* (*delete as appropriate), flexibility is required. Plus prepare for thumb wars over the window seat on the night bus. 

Anyhow, the point really is that two weeks with your newly betrothed can be rather intense. Let's face it, we spend at least ten hours away from them at work, sleep for anywhere between 6-8 hours a night so that leaves a minimal portion of the day to being together. When you commit to six months of travelling, in each others pockets every living minute of every day, you'd think that would get a bit much. We managed to avoid an argument the entire trip although barbed comments were made thanks to tiredness, hangry-ness or heat of the moment. There were far more unsanitary moments when the 'in sickness and in health' clause was called upon.
I remember we met a girl in Iguassu Falls who was travelling alone but her boyfriend was flying out to meet her in various places along her route using his holiday allowance. She had asked how we were finding travelling as newlyweds as her friend had done a similar trip with her new husband, and returned to say: Would I do that again with my husband? No. Would I have done that if I'd known what it would be like? No. 

Guess it depends on the couple because I’d spend the rest of my days travelling with my man and a backpack (plus plenty of loo roll!!) 


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