Travel should enliven the soul, should give you such a bright glow that people will look at you and want whatever it is that’s making you look as if you’re floating on air.
The people we meet, the food you eat, the places we visit are all part of this experience. When I travel I collect stories like other people collect shoes, or clothes or cars. Getting invited into and traveling in a country as a friend or sister or auntie, it’s way different than traveling as a stranger, as a, um, tourist. The beauty of the landscapes of our world are awesome, but it’s the people that enrich these experiences one hundredfold.
As auntie, sister, brother or uncle you create a global family for yourself. You eat, talk and see the country as a native. You are welcomed as family. The feeling is kind of hard to describe. You may not always even speak the same language, but you can easily communicate through the emotions, smiles, laughs, or hugs.
Knowing that you’re welcome in so many places as family and friend is humbling. It’s like having an all access pass. I remember the excitement and joy I had at seeing the inside of a Maasai home or getting a special song from my friend’s daughter in the Philippines. The wonder of seeing the world as if you were a child, learning the customs, culture and all those little nuances that make us individuals is priceless.
Sharing things about yourself and allowing others to give you a part of themselves to take with you. Leaving a little bit of you when you get out and let go. To know a country through the food, people, smiles, tastes, smells, laughs, friends, family allows you to layer your life with memories that will stay with you for the rest of your life.
When something is so amazingly good, you want to share that with everyone. You want everyone to feel this. When you travel with enthusiasm, it’s catching. Travel slowly with purpose, take your time. Engage with all your senses. Explore with wonder, excitement and joy.