Always I want to qualify things and I have not yet left behind a childish oversimplification in distinction: there is Good and Bad in the world. Easy. Gray in judgment leaves me feeling unfinished. Even after 11 years of Travel I still find myself reverting to classifying all I trip upon with much deliberation but little variation of adjectives.
Most Different equaled Good to a younger me, bored of the Midwest and certain that something more exciting lay just beyond the river bend (Pocahontas reference intentional). Strange, Weird, Confusing all made it into the Good category by their sheer otherness. Then some Different became Good by virtue of confusion. That which discomforted my previously unquestioned suburban ethics was exalted rather than inspected too harshly. In other words, anything done by any sort of formerly oppressed peoples, no matter how seemingly strange, must be Good at its core; nonsensical only because of my ignorant failures. Long live imperialists’ Noble Savage! It made everything easier. And in the heart of my backpacking social scene thinking Good of others meant others thinking Good of you; only the narrow-minded dare condemn otherwise.
This weekend I will kiteboard. I’ve been putsying around on the beach learning how to fly the humongous kite. Now it’s time to strap on a board and hit the water. I am the most uncoordinated person I know. But sometimes you have to dare to fail. In traveling. At work. In life. So here goes nothing…
Valentine’s Day is tomorrow and whether you realize it or not, you do have a Special Someone – or, rather, a Special Something – to share it with.
You are in a long-distance relationship. You always said you’d never get into one. They never work. They drive you crazy. And yet here you are, one of the suckers who couldn’t bear to end it at the airport. So what if this particular relationship isn’t with another human? Your relationship with Travel needs love, too. As an expert in long-distance relationships (my boyfriend is shaking his head at me) I feel it is my duty to help you make this relationship work.
Travel is the great equalizer between ages. Maybe you can’t teach old dog new tricks, but you can teach it to pick a point on a map and go there. Just think how many people use retirement as their starting point for travel. Travelling is open to people of all age because it’s only as comfortable or hectic as you make it. You can find travellers in strollers or in wheelchairs.
So if you’re never too old to travel, is it possible that you can ever be too old for hostels?
Whether you’re at home or overseas it’s important that you take your vitamins, put on sunscreen and, of course, Beware of the Crazies (or BOTC, as a tribute to my last post, TIA). Perhaps you’ve managed to surround yourself with semi-normals and are unaware of, or have simply forgotten the workings of the Crazies. Fortunately for you, I encounter Crazies both in travels and in my hometown, and am well versed in their antics.
The most important thing to remember about Crazies is that they make terrible travel companions. Sure, they might seem tons-of-fun at first and get you to “push your limits” by riding zebras bareback or getting a traditional (read: painful) Thai tattoo. But once the initial adrenaline (and tequila) wears off you’ll be left with one over hyped ball of nuts.