My first reason for travelling was the simple desire to escape Canadian winters. My parents took me to Barbados when I was ten years old and I had the time of my life chasing geckos, swimming in the ocean and (strangely) shopping for Enid Blyton books. I caught a lizard and its tail broke off. I pulled a long dried bean off a tree and it gave me a rash so my parents made me throw the bean away.
Even in my 20s, my first solo international trip was a journey through Mexico in January. I studied Spanish in Mérida and it was WARM! As I chatted with my host family and watched the world go by from the zócalo, I noticed that there was a lot to learn. People had different priorities, and some of them made more sense than my values. Mexicans struggled to survive without privileges that I took for granted. University professors cleaned offices at night to make ends meet.
“Travel broadens the mind.” A cliché perhaps but it can be true. Though, I met some travellers who brought so many prejudices with them that broadening was not possible. Sometimes I’ve missed out on learning opportunities due to my own fear, but when I’ve opened up and made genuine connections, wonderful things have happened.
After many years of globetrotting, I feel enriched by all the great people I’ve met, from young lesbians in Laos to environmental activist nuns in India. My favorite travel stories are about unique cultural events and about people who are working to make a difference in their communities. On this page you’ll see some of my pieces from the past, and new writing, photos and videos from journeys to come.
3 responses to “Why do we travel?”
Great new blog…can’t wait to read more!
Your early Barbados experience had so many elements of travel: lizards, shopping, unexplained rashes. How great that you were able to, erm, embrace all of them! Even if the gecko’s tail did fall off.
Thanks for sharing your travels with us.
Thanks for sharing your story! Travel does broaden the mind if one allows.