Day 175 – Yet more philosophy of traveling

2009/03/05 § Leave a comment


What is the difference between holiday and travel, I asked some days ago. What is the right way to travel I also asked, but I still owe you an answer. Even though I remember having tried to approach the question in a somewhat quirky blog entry when I was at the Taj Mahal in India. Maybe I keep approximating the answer though…my answer anyway.

Is it true that answers to such questions can always be only a personal one? Is it like with music taste (even though some of my friends seem to believe music taste is divided in good and bad 😉 )?

Some, like these French girls I met the other day, travel seeing a new highlight every other day. Literally never staying longer than two nights in each place. Others, like a French guy I met, stay in places for months at end. All of them travel for several months but their experiences must vary tremendously. Yet, or because of it, people can argue about it for a whole night and more, never agreeing which is the “better” way of traveling.

I have come to believe lately that it is just a matter of taste. And that the potential of the very question (which is the best way to travel) to annoy me silly stems from the fact that there is no universal answer. It is a shame though, as I was hoping at some point to approximate a universal advice. And yet, contemplating it now I know that I never really thought I could give any universal answer. I have come to a sad realization; traveling is whatever you allow it to be. And what you allow it to be depends on your life situation, hence also your age.

When I traveled in 1996 I came back thinking that “it is not about what you see, it is about the people you meet”.

In 2002, when I traveled I would still have thought so, but I did not need people around me all the time.

An English guy the other day reminded me of myself, as I was back in 1996. He said that he could not be alone for a day or two without feeling really lonely. I came to realize that I have not had a single moment on this trip feeling this way. It is rather the opposite. I have actively been searching for places that allow me some time alone and have felt at absolute ease about it.

Maybe traveling in 2008 meant: “it is not about the people you meet, it is about just doing it”.

Maybe I have just become more misanthropic, or maybe with a certain age you need less psycho babble from other travelers who seek something. I assume I don’t seek anymore. Seems I travel to give, and if no one wants to receive, I just move on.

How will traveling in 2014 be? That is yet another journey…Or will traveling in 2014 mean not to leave home at all? If it will take place, I will keep you posted I suppose… 🙂

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