In Life, Travel

What traveling does for and to you

I get that not everyone has time, let alone money to travel, but let’s say you have both and you’d like to, well here is a look into my past 3 years of on-and-off travel and what I’ve learned from it.

YOU DON’T NEED TO KNOW THE LANGUAGE

I know French now, but when I traveled I only had a passing smidgen of it. I still got along just fine with English, and gesturing (miming, really).

You don’t need language to understand each other for basic sales transactions like buying fruit, and so on.

Unless you’re trying to tell a story, you just need universal hand signs for “eat”, “sleep”, “how many” and “this is way too much money, NO THANK YOU”.

EVERY CITY FEELS THE SAME AT SOME LEVEL

Note: I will say that I have not been to the Middle East, Africa, or anywhere in South America. I find those areas quite out of my comfort zone especially as a young female, and I am not interested enough to visit those places, even with BF at my side.

This sounds very odd to say, but many cities in the same country (like the U.S. for instance), feel the same after a while.

Aside from major cities like New York City with its bustling, Miami with its strong Cuban influence, or San Francisco with its hills, a coffee shop in Boston will feel the same as a coffee shop in Houston.

So even if you’re in Spain and in Portugal, it will feel the same in terms of atmosphere after a while.

The accents are different but the atmosphere and feeling tends to be the same.

IF YOU HAVE SEEN ONE.. YOU HAVE SEEN THEM ALL

After the initial newness wears off, it becomes normal to you to see what was initially very cool and different.


In China for instance, after a while, Beijing blurred into Shanghai.

They each have their own distinct style and flavour, but for sight-seeing, once you’ve seen one temple or Chinese-style building, you’ve pretty much seen all of them.

Photograph-Travel-Beijing-China-Dongzhimen-Red-Lantern-Alley

HOME BECOMES LESS OF A “BE-ALL AND END-ALL PLACE”

You start thinking about what it would be like to live in each city or country, or at least I do.

Home for me is truly where the heart is (people), not the actual home itself.

I again, am not someone who’s really attached to things like a specific home I have more of an inclination or easygoing-ness to just be able to leave a city and live somewhere totally new.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s always nice to return home after a trip, but the word “home” in terms of geographic placement becomes flexible after you travel for a while.

YOU MISS YOUR OWN COUNTRY / CITY

While you may not miss your own specific home, you definitely miss being around your own countrymen and being in your own city.

There’s something familiar about knowing where the best coffee shop is, or how to get around without having to look at a map every 2 seconds.


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Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

I got out of $60,000 of debt in 18 months using TheBudgetingTool.com. Since then, I have worked 50% of my career (taking 1-2 year breaks), and quadrupled my income within 2 years of graduating, going from $65K to $260K (savings rate = 85%). I could retire today if I wanted, but love my work-life balance as a freelancing consultant in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). I also post daily on Instagram @saverspender.

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3 Comments

  1. S
    SP

    I found the same when traveling in Asia – although each country has unique cultures, there were a lot of similarities between big Asian cities (at least compared to the american life I was used to), and by the end, I really only wanted to spend a certain amount of time in a city. I like exploring nature, countryside, and traveling by trains – it feels a little more varied. (speaking mostly of china & SE asia here). Anyway, I definitely get less of these feelings about “you’ve seen one..” and missing home on shorter vacations, and appreciate them very much. I imagine this is why I don’t feel that way about europe – i haven’t taken any extended vacations there, just visited it on several different occasions, generally focusing on a 2-3 cities each trip.

    Reply
    1. sherry@savespendsplurge.com

      Even 2-3 for me is too much because I like to laze around and just soak up the atmosphere, drinking a hot chocolate at a cafe.

      Then my partner gets annoyed and says: WE CAN DRINK HOT CHOCOLATE ANYWHERE AT HOME. Why are we spending X amount a day to DO THIS?

      Well. I like the atmosphere and observing people, the way they walk, talk, the rush or stillness of their lives… it tells me quite a lot. Or I’m just lazy and tired and want to rest & eat 🙂

      Reply

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