I first caught the bug for traveling when I spent a year in Seoul right after college to rediscover my roots. Spending extended time in such a different urban setting was exhilarating, liberating and stimulating. Every day was a new adventure.
Prior to that I’d spent most of my life in the southern suburbs of Seattle playing basketball in gyms or hanging out at local malls.
I’ve now lived on three continents and visited many different cities. My career has allowed me to be mobile and given me a lot of opportunities to travel. While traveling can be tiring, it is still something I really enjoy. Reflecting back, I’ve enjoyed almost every place I’ve ever visited. Every city offers something unique and interesting.
When on the road I always try to spend some time in local places. Once when young working for a global agency I was in Jakarta and left my “Western” hotel for a weekend to live in a local lodging place with shared bathrooms. While on an extended trip to Paris, I volunteered to entertain a man in a nursing home so I could be with locals. Even in Butte, Montana I spent Saint Paddy’s day drinking with the locals until I passed out.
Life is like traveling. You can choose to get involved and seek out different experiences, or retreat back to what is familiar.
I’m one who encourages you to do the former.