what i’ve learned from travel
i’ve learned about new cultures, food, art, music, clothing, dance, and beliefs. i’ve learned about beautiful differences in the way people live around the world.
i’ve learned patience. so much patience. (i don’t always practice it, but i’ve learned it ;)
i’ve learned how to read a map, how to retrace my steps, and how to be confident in a new place. i’ve learned how to get my bearings somewhere new. i’ve definitely learned that it never hurts to stop and ask for directions.
i’ve learned that there is beauty to be found everywhere: far across the world, or in our own neighborhood.
i’ve learned that all of the time and hours researching a trip are never wasted. they make me more excited and knowledgeable about a place, and i appreciate it more when i’m there. however, i’ve also learned about the beauty of spontaneity and letting myself be surprised by a place i know very little about.
i’ve learned to smile at people. it breaks language barriers, cultural barriers, all barriers. i’ve learned to represent myself and where i come from in the best way i can, and to try to leave places better than i found them.
i’ve learned to never judge people. regardless of what they’re doing, wearing, or how they are acting…people can surprise us and travel puts us all in stressful situations. don’t judge, be patient.
i’ve learned about the power of talking to people. talking to locals, bonding with other travelers, and being friendly will always expand what i know and how i remember a place. everyone has a story to tell.
i’ve learned how to tangibly grasp geography & history after experiencing important places in real life.
i’ve learned to keep in touch. nothing is more important than our loved ones and relationships with those who are permanently in our life.
i’ve learned that the touristy attractions sometimes aren’t worth it. go see the ones that are, and don’t bother with ones that aren’t. mostly, i’ve learned to not feel pressure to see a place just to see it or take a photo, but to do it for the experience.
i’ve learned that it’s possible to be completely exhausted yet invigorated, refreshed, and inspired all at once.
i’ve learned how to save money on simple things and splurge on memorable ones. i’ve learned to buy experiences and not items.
i’ve learned to be cautious and aware while also enjoying and not over-worrying. i’ve learned to watch for common scams, protect myself from pickpockets, and constantly be aware of my surroundings.
i’ve learned to enjoy being alone when i’ve been solo, and to really love 24/7 time with my husband. sometimes traveling and being together nonstop drives us crazy, but it brings a bond that nothing else can. i’ve learned to fall even more in love with him.
i’ve learned to appreciate the different. i’ve learned to keep an open mind and take nothing for granted.
i’ve learned to be flexible. if the museum is closed, if the train is missed, if the plan goes wrong… there’s always a silver lining and the things that go wrong usually make for the best memories.
i’ve learned how to cut a mango the right way, how to spot real jade, how to convert currency in my head, how to tie a sari, how to say thank you in countless languages, how to count time differences, how to ride an elephant, how to make pizza in naples, how to spot lion tracks, how to dress for any weather, how to pack light, and how to perfectly time catching a train.
i’ve learned that travel is one of the most amazing things in the world, but it’s not the secret to life. i’ve learned that if you don’t have the important things to go back to, it’s not worth it. i’ve learned that we should travel not to escape life… but for life not to escape us. it should only add to our life that we already love.
i’ve learned about myself. so much about myself. i’ve learned to be confident and capable. i’ve learned to be grateful for where i come from and what i’ve been able to see. i’ve learned all of my strengths, and ALL of my many weaknesses (they are amplified when traveling! :) i’ve learned about what is most important to me. i’ve learned to never stop exploring, but i’ve also learned to be satisfied with simplicity as well.
i have learned how happy i am when in a new place with my husband. i’ve learned how beautiful this big world really is. i’ve learned that through all of this travel, nothing is better than home and where my loved ones are.
“to my mind, the greatest reward and luxury of travel is to be
able to experience everyday things as if for the first time, to be in a
position in which almost nothing is so familiar it is taken for granted.”
– bill bryson
what has travel taught you?