Prepared to Travel, Sept. 4, 2013
As most of you know, I’ve done my share of spontaneous solo traveling, backpacking from country to country, usually getting stranded with no money in every country I go to, only to find myself living there for a period of time, adapting to my environment, learning the local culture and language, and becoming part of surf communities in far away lands. I generally travel as light as possible, make few plans, act on instinct, make sudden decisions, dream big, take the most extreme and organic route as far as possible.
I’ve always said “I’ll go everywhere twice”, fearing to leave any place thinking I may never see it again. But reality is that I may never see some countries twice, and others I might see time and time again, like England, the Virgin Islands or America. If I had my way, I’d never stop traveling, and I’d bounce from place to place like a nomadic gypsy ‘til the end of my days when I find myself too old to board the next plane or drive the van. I’d see every country on the planet at least once, and my children’s home would be wherever their feet happen to be.
The globe is a lot smaller the more you see of it. My very first out-of-country experience was to the other side of the planet; Australia. From the window of the plane I watched the islands of Hawaii lit up in the night, and the reefs of the South Pacific in the summer sun. Suddenly the world grew smaller and smaller with every mile.
Since then, I’ve been to Puerto Rico, Jamaica, Turks & Caicos, Bahamas, and lived in the Virgin Islands, Cornwall in England, and in Morocco. The more one explores even just the possibilities and the geography of this beautiful planet we call home, the more one realizes that no matter where you go, you’ll meet a friend of a friend, and there we realize that we’re all just a vast web of relationships.
Imagine yourself in a far away place, and then try to see it as vividly as possible in your mind; so vivid you could walk right through it. And then take hold of that reality and understand that you can so very easily put yourself in that place in physical form, and experience it for what it really is as opposed to how you saw it on TV or on the internet.
Things really aren’t what they seem to be. It really takes a hands-on approach to truly learn and understand anything in life, especially a new place. To engulf yourself in a new culture, humbly, with nothing except yourself, is what I believe to be one of the boldest, most daring and educational things a person can do, and I’ve found that to be my passion.