Alright, alright. You caught me. Xtra Thoughts isn’t a real place let alone one you can travel to! I’ve been dreading this day. The letter X doesn’t really lend itself to a travel blogging theme. But that’s okay because I’m going to use today’s post as a way to talk specifically about why I enjoy traveling.
No matter if you’re traveling locally or internationally, going somewhere different is an adventure. Along the way you’re bound to encounter new things, new people and make some lasting memories. For me, geographical change fuels my sense of adventure and helps me challenge myself and try new things. Somehow I’m braver and more daring when traveling. I can think of a few times where I chose to do something out of my comfort zone and I’m sure that being in the travel mindset is what goaded me into those decisions.
I’m the kind of person that has to experience something firsthand to understand it. Learning theory based math or politics in college was difficult for me to digest and understand. However, give me a real life example to work through and I’ll pick up on the concept in a jiffy. The same thing applies to travel. You can’t truly begin to understand a place until you get there and start walking around. The flora and fauna, street organization (or lack thereof), and a litany of other things are what make a place unique and distinguish it from the town or country next door. Reading through past journals I’ve had a good laugh comparing my pre-trip expectations to my actual experience.
This one is less tangible and a slow burner. I would even go so far as to say that travel has long term effects on a person both good and bad. For example, after living abroad in a place where my appearance alone attracted a fair amount of unwanted attention I learned to be on alert and aware of my surroundings. Of course it’s always good to pay attention to what is happening around you but feeling uneasy isn’t the best way to enjoy your travels. On a more positive note, learning a new language and living in very different places helped me gain confidence and learned to go with the flow. The little blips and snags that occur in daily life and especially are bound to happen when traveling don’t bother me as much anymore. Shit happens and years down the road I won’t remember that the hotel room was smaller than expected. Do you catch my drift?
There it is: some of my thoughts about travel and why I appreciate it. What have you learned while traveling?