Routine can be a terrible addiction. Before you know it another comfortable year has passed. Our lives like a predictable movie: we know how the main story ends. I won’t say it’s a Ground Hog Day scenario, but where and when did we leave the wish for a pandemonium life?
You will recognize this. Commuting, driving from home to work every day, causes you to lose track of time and distance: you don’t actually notice where you are going. Driving the same route day in day out doesn’t stimulate your brain. On the contrary, it just decides to stop absorbing the moment. Our Mr. Brain slowly weakens the willingness to see new things; tomorrow will be the same again, why bother?
Justin Mussler from the Great Family Escape recently wrote: “I need to get out; new stories are to be found on the road”. That road doesn’t have to be that long or far away, as long as we are moving.
How you and I will define the true meaning of traveling is a bit more defined. For our family traveling is a way to search for a meaning. We want to be kicked in the butt by inspiring places and exciting cultures. The goal of your way of traveling is to discover how the world is different and that you are able to absorb it all. That’s why you are reading what I am writing right now. I write sitting behind the kitchen table at my comfortable home….only 7 days before we leave for India.
Astronaut Andre Kuijpers (currently our Dutch hero) recently returned from space spending a couple of months in the International Space Station (ISS). His muscles were like jelly after living so long without gravity. He couldn’t walk, was sick as hell from the trip back to earth, but smiled. He smiled from ear to ear, even expressed his wishes to go back.
Our family wants to travel. We accept we will get sick, we will get tired from searching for a place to stay, be annoyed by all the touts, the chaos and extreme hot weather….just to return home smiling from ear to ear. We live a life, a life full of travel and explorations, deliberately out of our predictable comfort zone.
Why we travel
Actively searching for new stories that will move and shape us. Becoming a true global citizen. This blog is my vehicle to share our stories with you. I hope you will be triggered to make the same transition to lead a challenging life of traveling.
Not sure yet? Let me sum up what we feel traveling is all about and why we are pursuing this journey as a family:
- Travel is the best education for our kids to learn about the world and its people, to understand about respect and their role on our planet. George Steiner wrote that “human beings need to learn to be each other’s guests on this small planet.” The world is one giant class room, the best there is.
- I believe people are not made to stay in one place. In our hearts we are pilgrims and nomads. I wonder many times why people live in the same place for that long. Is there any reason besides easy habits and economic ties? There are so many interesting places to visit and it doesn’t have to be all Wonders of the World.
- I strongly believe in the value of serendipity. The best encounters (the ones you love to talk about at parties) were accidental. If you open up yourself to surprises and don’t plan everything in advance, you will be rewarded. Are you ready to give yourself over to disorientation?
This is why we travel and what my blog is all about. Let’s bring back the idea of travel as a search for inspiration and education. It’s nothing more than changing the way we look at traveling and act a bit differently.
How we travel
So how do we move forward with this? You don’t have to become a traveling nomad right away. Our family travels a couple of times a year from our home base in the Netherlands. The type of travel varies, from short weekend trips to our upcoming 6 week travel in Asia.
The road you travel doesn’t have to be long, as long as you are moving.
Some people ask if we have a bucket list of must-see places. Well, not really because I started to feel differently about bucket lists. These lists completely ban the ultimate concept of serendipity: the world of unexpected discoveries. Why travel only to tick off your bucket list? That is time wasted to see what is really happening around you right now.
So off we go soon for another great adventure. From mid-July until early September you can follow our adventures in India and Thailand. We intend to travel slowly making the most of what comes our way. We will try to update regularly in the form of short blog posts. Will you be following us?
Next stop: New Delhi, India.
[ Mind the gap ] [ Cultural gap that is ]