There is a wonderful thing that happens to a person when they visit a new place. Whether it’s a new city or a new country, they are forced to take part in a life they are not familiar with. Though some people go and see what they are told they should see, other people enjoy the local experience. They thrive as a traveler, not as a tourist; and in so doing, are witnesses to a new world of wonder.
The thing I love most about traveling, regardless of where I choose to go, is when I let myself be immersed in the local culture and customs. I rarely go to tourist attractions because it doesn’t show me the core of a place, but rather the glossy finish of a completed picture. As I settle into the routine of my working life, I’ve come to realize that though it brings me comfort and stability, I enjoy having my senses shocked a little. Holding down a regular job is good for the future; save money, build up your credit, get a home, find someone, build a life, but I’ve come to know that there is so much more than that. Though it is necessary, it isn’t helpful if you’re working towards a life that isn’t suited to you. Over the course of my relatively short life, I’ve been able to understand much about who I am, and about what I want from my life. I want a job that makes me feel like I’m making a difference. I want interests and hobbies that are not only entertaining for me, but that can become entertainment for others. I want experiences that make me question everything I want, and everything I have.
I’ve been blessed enough to have visited several foreign countries. Though all of them well developed, it still served its purpose and opened my eyes to new realities. It also allowed me to see, that for most of the commercialized European countries like France and England, much of what is publicized is falsely represented. There are cultures that are wrongfully stereotyped by others to portray an image that would leave them more favourable. Though I know it is not possible for everyone to be able to visit different countries, and must rely on pictures and the media to experience them, it’s always better to find personal accounts like blogs, journals and books, to get the broader picture. It is how the travel bug gets us first!
So why is it we should travel, other than for all the reasons I’ve listed already? It helps break up our day to day lives, and allows us to live differently. I know that I wouldn’t be the person I am today had I not traveled. I take the time to explore my own country to get a better idea of the things that keep us connected, while allowing us to have an ever-growing cultural diversity. Different isn’t bad; it’s refreshing! And it’s when we experience this break, this slight shock, this difference that we are opened to the questions in front of us. We can find new solutions, new answers, and if not, simply new ways of being at peace with the stable life we’ve worked so hard to create for ourselves. We become grateful for what we have, and appreciate what we can know. It is why it is so important to wander, since it allows us to wonder.
To find out more about Kyla’s wanderings visit her at : firstname.lastname@example.org