Travel Bug

The weather is starting to give up on the cold and cloudy and switch to the warm and sunny. Summer break is drawing closer and this circle of life that has been for many of us life-long students, the pace of life as we know it, is triggering a need to vacation, to travel and in general to accumulate new experiences outside of the books, classes, local food store, cinema, opera, etc.

We are all passionate about the little umbrella drinks, the pristine beaches, the aquamarine water and the quiet escape from the to-and-fro that is daily life. Here is an eye refresher.

But sometimes travelling can be a different type of adventure, a time where you meet new people, exchange ideas, learn something new and see another part of this wonderful blue dot that is our planet.

Paul Salopek, a Pulitzer prize-winning journalist and National Geographic Fellow, is currently undertaking the journey of a life time and converted into dog years it could be a lifetime: on foot, 7 years, 34 000 kilometers. The journey started on January 10th, 2013 in Herto Bouri, Ethiopia and will end in 2020 in Tierra del Fuego, Chile. The plan: to follow in the footsteps of 60000 years of human migration and document along the way.

For others travelling is freedom from the 9 to 5 job, the pointless office politics and annoying bosses that let’s face it, would greatly benefit from a good punch in the nose once in a while. Adventurous Kate is one of the brave ladies that decided to change her life: at 26 she quit her job and is currently travelling the world solo after having made her travel blog a full-time business.

Maybe such radical changes are not the best option for all of us, but it is clear that travelling gives us perspective and lets us appreciate coming home. Sometime we need to walk away from what we have in order to cherish it- distance does make the heart grow fonder.

Rick Steves, an author and American television personality, describes travelling as a political act. He believes that travelling should be more than luxurious food, hotels and art. It should be a time where we leave behind whatever ideas we believe to be common truths and try to understand something else other than our local status quo. One of the simplest arguments – The Fork: to many of us eating with a fork is civilized, but why is that any different than eating with chop-sticks or our hands?

So in preparation for the next trip imagine what would you rather tell your grandchildren about: that time you caught a sale at the grocery store or that time you bargained for a carpet in Morocco and walked away with the life story of the store keeper?


Header Image credits Alina Nikolaou

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