October 25, 2012

There is travel . . .


. . . and then there is travel-


And the two should never be confused. They’re not interchangeable.  The first is merely a go-through-the-motions exercise, the dried-out process of getting somewhere, spending a little time, and returning home.  But travel is another matter entirely. It is a consuming experience, an adventure, really, and some little piece of it stays with you forever. What separates the extraordinary journey from the merely ordinary often has little to do with place.  It is simply a matter of what you bring to the trip-your frame in which you place the experience.

Despite popular opinion, travel is not, and never has been, only about collecting pre-packaged pieces of scenery.  It’s much more personal than that.  It is an individual response-your response-in a given context that makes a trip either memorable or disposable.  When it’s memorable, it’s because of what you saw and what you felt and what you thought.  Then, too, there is the discovery of unexpected pleasures.  And the irony of liking what you thought you would not,  and disliking what you expected to embrace. 






The joy of travel is making a wrong turn and confronting a sight that is at that moment the prettiest you have ever seen;

it’s a restaurant whose smell can always be recalled and always makes you feel warm inside;










it’s that little inn and the incredible days you spent there.




When I think about my favorite trips, I remember the details: colors, tastes, smells, sounds.  But what I remember most of all is who I met.  Let’s be honest, a great view is simply a great view.  It rarely makes a trip.  We have all been to places not likely to be photographed or written about where we have had an absolutely wonderful time.  And that, after all, is the point.




16 comments:

Anonymous said...

Good question, never wondered why people travel. Most ordinary people travel to get away from their day to day job and spend some time doing something else. But as you, trying new things is the real reason for travellers.

Dr. Bunsen and your gaggle of fans said...

Thanks for the inspirational post...

Some thoughts on the subject:
Light travels faster than sound. This is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.

Kilometers are shorter than miles. Save gas, take your next trip in kilometers.

And never forget- don't insult the alligator till after you cross the river.


Will Kommen said...

Americans who travel abroad for the first time are often shocked to discover that, despite all the progress that has been made in the last hundred years, many foreign people still speak foreign languages.

Enjoyed the post, thank you.

Mona said...

But why, oh why, do the wrong people travel, when the right people stay at home?
A woman after my own heart thanks for the post.

Charles said...

You got to be careful if you don't know where you're going, because you might not get there.

Enjoyed your thought.

C and C (Lake Tahoe) said...

Great post! We agree we too travel to learn, to challenge ourselves, and try new things.
Just one little word of caution; one certainty when you travel is the moment you arrive in a foreign country the American dollar will fall like a stone.

frenchtoast said...

Thanks, a woman after my own heart.

Remember-
Living on Earth is expensive, but it does include a free trip around the sun every year.

And remember-
you can find your way across the world using Starbucks joints the way a navigator uses stars.

Lil’ Bruder said...

Boy, those Americans. They have a different word for everything!

Inspirational post I shall meditate on it. Oh and remember, when you come to the fork in the road, take it!


Syl v O said...

Enjoyed the post, but remember…
Too often travel, instead of broadening the mind, merely lengthens the conversations. ๏̯͡๏ . . .

Anonymous said...

I went backpacking through Europe and I met so many Australians and learned so much about Australian culture.

Thanks for the post interesting

asterix said...

Personally I like going places where I don't speak the language, don't know anybody, don't know my way around and don't have any delusions that I'm in control. Disoriented, even frightened, I feel alive, awake in ways I never am at home.

Anja said...

Dear Asterix, there are several ways to react to being lost. One is to panic another is to abandon yourself to the experience, to allow the fact that you've misplaced yourself change the way you experience the world. ٩(●̮̮̃•)۶

Felix (Mona's BEST part) said...

The journey is the experience - after all, one doesn't take the A train to Mecca.
Just remember, travel to heaven for the climate, to hell for the company.

Baldur (much traveled still mindless) said...

Yes, travel develops the mind, if you have one, of course.

Anonymous said...

The saddest journey in the world is the one that follows a precise itinerary. Then you're just not a traveler. You're a f@@king tourist.
Enjoyed this post!

Ms. Edna (squared) said...

I always had a desire to see something besides my own shores, if only to be content to return to them someday. If I wish to live in my native land and love her, it should not be out of ignorance.