"I haven't been everywhere, but it's on my list." -Susan Sontag
I am a self-proclaimed traveler and I learned the art of traveling just recently when I moved to Dubai.
I remembered it was an ordinary lazy Saturday afternoon when me and my friend decided to venture on a new journey. Unaware and unsure of what it may bring, yet we still pushed through with the plan. We booked for a package tour that includes the flights and accommodations for Greece. Just that. Only that. The rest is up to us. It will be a DIY (do-it-yourself) kind of adventure. We tried our luck for a Schengen Visa not knowing if they will grant us or not. And yes, we paid already for the tickets and stay so it’s a do or die situation. The day came when I got my passport with a green imprinted visa-aha! I then said to myself, “This is really for me, this is really meant to be.”
Traveling has a cliche. It’s expensive. It’s tiring. It’s a waste of time especially for us living abroad; we need to take credit from our annual leave, which entails less time for our families when we go home.
So basically why travel? Here are my whys.
1. It broadens your perspective in life.
I came from a very small hometown and grew up with the same people, doing repetitive activities of daily living and the feeling is like playing the same old track over and over again. There is an inner need to go out from my comfort zone.
Traveling helps you meet people from different walks of life. Thus, it helps you understand why people have different behaviors. On another note, it also makes you possess a wide array of knowledge helping you develop yourself and become a better person.
2. It develops your social skills.
I am an introvert. Sometimes antisocial, sometimes too moody and only talks when being asked. After being exposed on a trip, I realized there is a need to communicate to people, to connect with the locals in order to learn their way of living.
Language is the number one barrier; yet, when you have the thirst for adventure and culture, you have to deal with divergent individuals to comprehend their way of life.
3. It hones your budgeting skills.
It is taxing on the pocket to drive around town and eat sumptuously on their deliciously cooked grouper. That is why being frugal is a good trait. You will learn what to prioritize as long as everybody is still eating three times a day. Plus, walking is a good exercise too!
4. It humbles you.
“Traveling makes one modest – you see what a tiny place you occupy in the world.” – Gustave Flaubert
This hit me hard. After seeing the good side that traveling brought me, it fabricated a sense of gratitude in me. I realized that I am a nobody and that there are so many things to learn, so many places to see and so many marvellous adventures to be explored.
5. It fills your heart and soul.
Wandering and exposing yourself to a new environment fills a space in you that you never knew was empty. I became more passionate about people and their culture,as well as learning a lot in terms of language and food. You know what’s more interesting? It’s when I realized that in general, people everywhere in the world are humane and that is why I am in the verge of meeting more of them in the years to come.
So yes, it's expensive. Yes, it's tiring. And yes, it needs time but I would be willing to invest on these things again and give up a little bit of my time for the sake of traveling. I may not be rich, but I am starting to make my life richer by filling it with experienes and fond memories. What are you waiting for? Come, travel with me.