- Travel Topics
The last few weeks have been a major time of reflection for me. It’s the type of reflection I’ve been hoping for. The type of life-changing, epiphany-esque thoughts that can bring about real change in a person’s life.
All I can say is – it’s about time.
Sometimes I read other bloggers’ accounts of travel, which often describe the life-altering attitudinal changes that a few months on the road have caused.
And instead of lifting me up – it gets me down.
Because I haven’t really felt the same way. Travel’s been fun – yes, but life altering – no? Still the same old me, more or less (a few pounds lighter actually, so less). In fact, it’s hard to imagine it EVER being life altering. What would make me believe that the next 3 months will be any different from the last? More tourist sites, more ephemeral interactions, more train/bus/plane rides.
And there I was, stuck.
But then we eased off the travel gas a bit, just a bit. We slowed down – an extra day here, a later train ride there. Enough so that I came across this wonderful thing called time. Real time, like hours, set aside to do whatever I wanted, and, thanks to China, there was no Facebook, no Youtube, no distractions.
It’s been really nice. I recommend it.
In fact, I’m beginning to think that this is really what’s brought about a lot of the epiphanies other travelers talk about. Is it travel that’s opening our eyes, or is it just that for the first time people are beginning to take a few moments here to sit and think about the big picture instead of the present or immediate future? That long to do list that begins your morning and ends your evening. Maybe time is all we really need?
So what have I discovered during these introspective periods. We’ll, aside from the solution to world hunger and poverty (see next article), a lot of it has just been about the importance of getting out there. It’s little things, like talking with that person sitting idly at the table (who, for all intents and purposes, could easily be ignored). Suddenly, as simple as that, we’ve been meeting a few more people on the road than previously. What else? How about joining in with a 30+ group of middle-age, dancing, Chinese women when you neither are middle-aged, are Chinese, and don’t know the dance.
Here’s the video.