We’ve all been there. Receiving a holiday present that we didn’t really want or need. Something that will inevitably take up space in the closet or on a shelf, destined to collect dust until we throw it out. I’ll bet most of us have also been on the other end of the transaction, buying an object that we think a person might like or want in order to have something to give them. One that will most likely spend its life in a closet or on a shelf.
We all have better things to do with our money and our time. So consider giving someone something that is truly priceless, a gift in its purest sense, one that will keep yielding new treasures for the rest of your friend’s or loved one’s life: An interest in exploring and learning about the world they live in.
We know the sort of treasure that awaits them, should they have the courage and will to escape their cozy US comfort zone. Long after our travel bills are paid off and the years have yellowed the pages of our travel journals, we recall the magic of our first experience of another culture while overseas. We remember the thrill of connecting to history where it happened. We recall the majesty of the first cathedral we stepped into, as the sun poured through the stained glass and splashed a kaleidoscope of vivid color across the hallowed space. Most of all, we cherish the friendships we made and the lessons we learned.
If some you know has yet to travel overseas, encourage them to do so; share your memories and insights with them. Engage their imaginations by telling a story about your own adventurers. Buy them a travel guide, anything to motivate them or arouse their curiosity. You’ll be giving them a real gift: Spark their interest in seeing a world waiting to be explored and enjoyed. Once that spark is ignited it can illuminate their lives forever.