If there were to be only one thing that’s true for all travelers, no matter of the style of travel, be it backpacker or luxury, unexpected surprises will strike. It’s just how travel goes – it’s best to expect that SOMETHING will go horribly wrong, or you will become unceremoniously lost, or some sort of fee may pop up that you never thought to plan for. If one aspect of traveling is to be consistent – no matter the type, style, destination, or traveler’s homeland – it’s the fact that there will be something that won’t quite go as planned. The real question when traveling isn’t what will go wrong when? – but how will you handle it?
From growing up in America, and having been left by my parents – one even left after a few years of my childhood – and the typical heart-wrenching break ups, and even having had “friends” totally backstab me, I thought the world was a mean and dark place. But the more I travel and the more I experience what all the world has to offer, and who all calls earth home, I’ve began to realize that the world isn’t such an awful place. On the contrary, most of the people I’ve met throughout my travels have been good, warmhearted, and tender individuals, who are curious about you and (usually) want nothing more than to do what they can in your life, no matter how minuscule that may be.
“I fear the day that technology will surpass our human interaction. The world will have a generation of idiots.”
In a modern world, dominated by technology, texting, and being glued to our digital devices, profiles in the cloud, and alternative worlds, it has never been more important to consider meaningful conversation with our dearest family and friends. Believe it or not, there once was a time that cell phones and mobile devices didn’t exist, and people actually spent time together because they thoroughly enjoyed each other’s company. As technology advances, areas of our lives become simpler and more under our control, however other aspects are being left to fall by the wayside. It was once natural to have an entire conversation over dinner or drinks without checking one’s gadget – it was also perfectly okay to look each other in the eye, and to genuinely care about what the other says.
As technology advances, our lifestyle changes and so industries evolve as well. It’s amazing to think how tremendously different life has changed and evolved each and every decade. Highly advanced computers that we could barely even dream of 40 years ago are now the size of credit cards. Heck, credit cards have completely changed the way people make payments, pay bills and manage their money while traveling abroad – and then there’s digital money, where you can manage your accounts online, pay bills through the digital inter-webs, and never actually leave your house to do your shopping. Music used to be played in a physical state, made of metals and plastics, and now you can have the equivalent of 1,000+ records available at anytime on an MP3 player the size of your big toe nail. Speaking of music, technology has revolutionized the music recording industry, as well as the photography and videography industries. Anyone can do it now, you know? There’s some good and some bad there though – the amount of artistic talent needed has dropped dramatically (but that’s another theme for future rant, I’m sure). Cars basically drive themselves now-a-days, and then there’s GPS’s, where you no longer need to use paper maps, and you can basically forget about asking for directions anymore.
Through my years of traveling the world, I’ve learned countless lessons and recognized numerous themes that connect all human beings, no matter the country or culture. I’ve found that there are certain inherent tendencies that most people have in common, like that of good will towards others. While Western societies have shown to separate communities by the development of social tiers and for the fear of security – I’ve witnessed firsthand, more times than I can count, that most people of this world, no matter their origin or belief, are generally good.
The experience of traveling to a destination is subject to circumstance and event. Someone may have a wonderful and unique time in Rome, by staying at a hostel or couch surfing, by meeting great people and having an overall positive time there. However, others may have a completely different experience, based on who they met, where they stayed, and what happened. For each and every person, a place will feel different and the experiences one has there will differ from anybody else’s, no matter the kind of destination. Travel and perception are both subject to the relationship of experience in each individual’s eyes.
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