Measure travel inwards

“Measure travel inwards” is a quote by Henry David Thereau. I came across these three simple words several years ago and, taking them quite literally, they quickly became a sort of talisman to my personal travel style. One should never cheapen the thrill of seeing a place that they have until then only dreamed of but, to me, travel also follows a strong internal road and allows us to map to very the center of ourselves.

As Vagabonders, we agree that travel is about finding a greater sense of self while finding a greater understanding of the world. I feel stronger, wiser and more beautiful through my travels, and this is exactly how the world is likewise reflected back to me.

Travel throws us into a world of incredible external stimuli. We are constantly reaching out to experience a different culture, meet new people, master a new language. However, the true lesson of our travels is learned when we turn that reaching in on ourselves.

What does the measure of our travels mean? Does it mean the experience of another culture? How far we saw into that culture? Or is it how far that culture allowed us to see into ourselves?
Putting ourselves down in a foreign land forces us to adapt. Will you hold fast to the social routines of your off the road lifestyle? Or will you step outside of yourself and allow your typical behaviour patterns to be chipped away into something tailored to your unique experiences?

Sometimes the road leads us to understand that we’re not so shy after all, or that we are incredible care-givers, activists, or environmentalists. Sometimes it leads us to hidden talents or new professions.

What have you learned through the measure of your travels?

Posted by | Comments (3)  | October 26, 2009
Category: General, Notes from the collective travel mind

3 Responses to “Measure travel inwards”

  1. Andrew Collinson Says:

    Living overseas for 14 years turned me into an internationlist.I have gone beyond petty flag waving patriotism.You can be proud of the town or city we come from, but can we drop this “my-county-is-the-best-in-the-world” garbage.
    This is one world,it’s all we’ve got.I think the greatest contribution to world peace would be for everyone to go a live in another country for six months,one that they own has some political problem with.Meet real people, not a group demonised as “the enemy”.

    This has been my inward journey.

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