The 12 Things Traveling Teaches You

On my last trip, certainly not my final trip, I wondered why I have such a huge desire to travel. I know people who are not affected by the travel bug. To me, that’s as unfathomable as not liking coffee or the Rolling Stones. I try to understand it, but I don’t.

I love the process. Deciding where to go, a decision influenced by things like budget and time available. When a destination is chosen, there are the hours spent looking for the best and cheapest plane fares. Checking the layover times to make sure we don’t miss our flight from the departure terminal that always seems to be miles from where you are. Finally, hitting the confirm reservation button while hoping you don’t come across a much cheaper fare next month.

Then, poring over guide books, watching videos, fingers tracing routes on a map, trying to decipher the foreign language train schedule. Choosing accommodations is big one. How close is it to the train station or the beach or that thing/place you really want to experience? Are the beds big enough (Europe tends to have small beds)?  Is breakfast included? Does it have a coffee maker because, if not, I have to bring my latest travel treasure – a small, collapsible, dual voltage kettle.

Ugh. The airport. Trying to remember to dump the water in your water bottle so it doesn’t end up in that huge barrel of other confiscated stuff that the TSA doesn’t like. Oh my god! Did we bring the expensive wine opener that has that minuscule little blade thingie on it that the TSA will throw in the barrel? Feeling smug that you were smart enough to buy Global Entry as you sail through the security line. Buying the best, most healthy breakfast you can find in the terminal, and wincing at the price. Boarding the plane, passing the big, roomy seats that you don’t get to sit in, getting settled into your confined space, zoning out for the next x number of hours, the excitement of finally arriving, the confusion of where to go next, how to get to the hotel, and you’re there!

So, my love of travel is just me, and I had never really given much thought to what travel gives me. But Chad Grills at The Medium has.

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