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Has traveling changed you and if so, how?

Has traveling changed you and if so, how?

Old Feb 25th, 2007, 06:24 AM
  #1  
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Has traveling changed you and if so, how?

Friends and I were discussing this yesterday. I feel more confident in everything I do now that I have tackled traveling to Europe, especially my solo trips.I also think I am more tolerant of differences among people. What about you? Have you changed?
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 06:29 AM
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ira
 
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Ever since my visit to Italy, I find myself 5 lbs heavier than before.

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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 06:30 AM
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ira
 
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PS,

That's what is meant when they say that "travel is broadening".
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 06:32 AM
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Maybe it builds character and you now have 5 lbs more of it!
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 06:40 AM
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Travel changes you only if you are open to it. It's kind of "you can lead the horse to the water..." (you know the rest). I have a SIL that had the unique opportunity of traveling all over Europe for years for business. If you asked her today about Paris or Rome, it is likely that she'll get them confused...

I find that the younger one is when embarking on travels, the more likelihood to be impacted by it. I feel travel changed me as far as priorities in life and spending on experiences rather than material stuff.

As far as building tolerance, I didn't have to wait to travel to learn that; I learned that at home.
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 06:55 AM
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Travel has definitely changed my life. I made a solo trip (5 weeks) to Australia in 1988 that has really given me such a feeling of confidence. It's hard to describe.

I've just made my 10th trip to SE Asia (Thailand) and this time it was solo. I had absolutely no problem getting on a plane for 20 hours to travel to Bangkok on a shopping trip by myself for a week! DH and DS both love to travel, and there are times when the three of us have headed out in three different directions!

Now I have to admit, I've never done a solo trip to Europe, but have been with DH probably 25 times or more. I'd have no problem going solo, should the ocassion present itself.
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 07:05 AM
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Ira has some of the most original one-liners on this forum.

Generally speaking, travel is bad for your net worth. Just kidding about that

You obviously begin to understand that world is not just your country, and your culture is not the only culture, and what you think is right, may not always be or right for everyone or for every situation.

That you can have a lot of fun traveling if you have money, and you should have as much of it as possible. Okay, I am begining to lose my focus and I better stop!
 
Old Feb 25th, 2007, 07:26 AM
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It makes me happier.
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 07:29 AM
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I just returned to the states after spending 4 months in London in a study abroad program. Traveling has most definitely changed my life. I was able to travel all over Europe and a small part of Africa. I went to Venice and Istanbul by myself. Now, I'm going back to Istanbul for the summer to live and work. It has felt like my whole life was leading up to this experience.
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 07:43 AM
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I think travel has given me a broader perspective.
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 07:50 AM
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E_M
 
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It's made me realize that I don't need so much junk (clothes, shoes, cosmetics, stuff!).

I am now working on streamlining my life so that I can be ready to go anywhere at a moment's notice.
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 09:54 AM
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"You obviously begin to understand that world is not just your country, and your culture is not the only culture, and what you think is right, may not always be or right for everyone or for every situation. "

This is true. One stop on my first trip to Europe was Berlin (I was alone, and 19). The lady at my pension spoke very good english with only a slight german accent--but I noticed that she had a British accent! I couldn't wrap my mind around this--how she could have both a german and a british accent. Then, of course, I realized--that there are English schools all over the world, and obviously not all of them teach American english! I felt foolish that I was that thick..

I do think it's what you make of it. Plenty of people tour Europe and return home unchanged; or complain the whole time and claim nothing is as good as it is in the good old US of A. Those of us who adopt a "When in Rome.." attitude are the ones who truly change and absorb from our travel experiences.

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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 10:12 AM
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I don't believe travel has changed me. I look at it from the flip side. Because of my particular personality type (cultural spongue with a need to shake things up) traveling around &/or living in new places suites me.
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 10:21 AM
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Travel is life on fast forward!

It makes me feel full of energy, curious, eager to explore and willing to learn new things. But in the end, I'm always glad to return home and start planning another trip.
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 11:27 AM
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Absolutely! But I disagree with Viajero that the younger you are when you start traveling the more impact it has on you. My husband and I didn't begin overseas traveling until we were "mature" and by virtue of that, I honestly think our visits in Europe and South America have been much more rewarding and had more impact on us because we were older.

I think those of you who have been fortunate enough to have traveled as children or studied abroad as young adults are more apt to take that sort of travel more for granted. Whereas we felt it was a tremendous gift.

I do agree that your approach to travel either changes you, or makes no difference if you can't see the forest for the trees so to speak. We have met Americans while traveling who were wasting money, since they expected everything to be the same as it was in their hometown, other than a few sites they had read about or seen on TV. And, of course, there's always the tourist who sightsees to say they have been there, but doesn't benefit at all from the experience.

Those of us who are "changed" by our travels seem to share a wonderful secret attained from the extraordinary things we have seen and done. Sometimes this may have just been an exchange of ideas with a local in some city, or viewing a painting, or a wonderful typical meal, not necessarily something earthshattering.
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 03:24 PM
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Before I traveled to New York and then later to Paris, I was warned about the inevitable rudeness I would encounter. However, in each city, what I encountered was one kindness after another. Not earth-shattering, as you said, but quite memorable. One can obtain a bigger world-view when it is based on one's own reality, not someone else's opinion.
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 05:16 PM
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In order to afford travel I've given up a lot of material things that would be important to others. IMO, experiences and memories are more important than material things. I cannot imagine a life without travel.
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 07:51 PM
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I joined the army at 19 and saw the pyramids in Egypt, the Middle East, Central America, South Korea, North Africa, Germany, France, Holland and other lesser known places. Travelin has opened my eyes to other peoples views, their cultures and history. Traveling lets you see that people are people no matter how rich or poor, color or religion do not matter, we all have the same hopes and dreams.
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 08:49 PM
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Being so far away from home makes me realize how tiny I am in this big, big world.
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Old Feb 25th, 2007, 09:38 PM
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I live to travel,... and the planning to travel... well, and to eat. I wish the same for my children.
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