Travel is an odd beast for me. I remember when I was a young lad, I dreamed of far off lands and all sorts of places I would go to when I was an adult. This was not merely around North America; my scope was truly global in nature. I have been very fortunate to travel to a number of places. I feel quite blessed. It is strange though, that at this point in my life, my desire to travel is much much less than it used to be. A number of factors I guess. I think I will explore these thoughts a bit on the blog today.
First of all, I am going to take a brief inventory of some of my travel to help me gain context.
- I have lived in four of the ten Canadian provinces. (Alberta, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and Saskatchewan).
- I have traveled to nine of the ten Canadian provinces. I really must visit Newfoundland to make it ten.
- I have been to many of the states in the USA, (I guesstimate that I have been to about 40 of the states).
- In addition to Canada and the USA, I have been to Mexico, Jamaica, Grand Cayman, England (& Scotland), Germany, Italy, Belgium, & Austria.
Thinking about that, it really seems like a lot of travel. When I consider some of my boyhood dreams of seeing… the great Pyramids, the Great Wall of China, the Australian outback, the Roman Colosseum, Taj Mahal, Moscow, Greek Islands, Spain, France, Casablanca, Dublin, and on and on and on…
…it would seem that my travel has a lot of ground to cover yet.
Truth is, my desire to see many of these things has greatly diminished. I think there are a few good reasons for this. Firstly, I really enjoy being at home. We entertain a lot and being enriched by friends is certainly a big factor in enjoying the simplicity of being home. Additionally, there are many truly wondrous things to discover in our part of the world. A days drive can have me in the Rocky Mountains, at Yellowstone Park, a host of Canadian National Parks, up North in the lake country of the Canadian Shield, the badlands, the Black Mountains, and many other places. Add another day of driving and the reach is extended to many more wonderful places. There is an incredible amount of exploring to do without having to travel to far.
Additionally, the inter connectivity of people on a global scale has taken some of the mystique out of travel. The internet means I can Google information and images about places afar any time I want. Add in the connection to people in far off places via social media tools and it is easy to learn about cultures and places without the need to travel there. It is not a substitute for travel, but it does satiate some of the appetite and curiosity for travel.
One other thing that affects my desire to hop on a plane is that fact that I love road trips. I find that my desire to travel is starting to increase for road trips and decrease for air travel. It is the journey as mush as it is the destination. There is so much more to see and experience in a road trip.
I am not done traveling. There is still a lot of the UK & Europe that I wish to explore. Those trips will happen when the time is right. In the meantime, I am very grateful for the opportunity I have had to travel and explore to date. Travel has not only broadened my horizons, it has exposed me to various cultures and viewpoints for which I am eternally thankful. Also, traveling has given me a deeper appreciation for home. It is always great to go wandering, but it is even better to come home. So many things to count as blessings.
“Travel makes one modest. You see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.”
― Gustave Flaubert
Well said Matt, I wonder how many people in other lands, scratch their heads when we speak of travel, when their one dream/desire would be to visit and explore Canada! I am guilty myself, having traveled throughout the States, Caribbean, my homeland Scotland, Cuba, yet I’ve never been to Newfoundland, shame on me!
We should all take your lead and discover what is in our own backyards!
I know what you mean about preferring road trips to air travel. I find air travel to be something that is endured in order to get to the destination but a car ride is enjoyable itself. Plus I agree about the fact that there is so much to see just within a day or two of driving out here. I do still have far off and exotic places I’d like to visit but I want to make sure I see everything close by too!
I don’t like travel at all. I enjoy being at the destination, but the time between points A and B doesn’t do it for me. I actually would rather just not travel than deal with the in between part. To make matters worse the older I get the less I tolerate the idea of the actual travel portions regardless of mode of travel. I’m holding out for the teleporter technology to be fully realized to make it easier on me so I can enjoy it.