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  • karenlowe4447

Where, When, How, What, and Maybe Why

Jetstreams Crossing in a Clear Blue Sky
X Marks the Spot! Jetstreams Crossing in a Clear Blue Sky

Maybe it’s the winter. Maybe it’s the age I’m at. Maybe I’m just too distracted, probably by books. Whatever the impetus, every so often (at least once a day lately) I get the urge to go somewhere. To explore. Travel or move to someplace different.

Anywhere! Everywhere!

Where to Go

Daughter and I, and maybe Hubby, are considering a trip this spring/summer. When asked where, I pondered and pondered... considered and thought.. and only ended up with a list. A rather long list. In fact, I could just hand them an atlas.

First, I considered places like (in no particular order) Spain, Southern Italy, Northern Italy, Belgium, Southern France, Switzerland -- skiing! Or in summer – maybe singing on a flower-studded mountainside :) Germany, Portugal, Denmark, England, Ireland, Scotland… What about Greece again? Friends went to Malta – another place to consider.

Or what about New Zealand? That would be awesome! Eleanor Catton’s Birnam Wood helped move that place up on the list.

While I'm down there, what about Australia? There's skiing and snorkeling…depending on the season. Or the location.

Africa's a continent I've never set foot on, but where to even start?

Kenya would be great. All those magnificent mammals!

Then there are places in the States I would love to explore – hiking or biking in Utah and Colorado and Washington and California and more. Then there’s wine tasting all over!

I have a list of places right here in Canada - Newfoundland, the Great Bear Rainforest, Saskatchewan's wide open skies, seafood in the Maritimes. Camping under the Northern Lights. I haven’t even started to consider the many places in the USA, Central America, the Caribbean, and South America. China and Japan and South-east Asia. The Arctic.

Antarctica is off the list though. My feet would be perpetually cold.

What to Do?

Explore. Swim. Hike. Browse in towns. Shop for interesting things (or books!). See the artwork. Admire the architecture. Take pictures!! Watch people. Stroll through museums and galleries.

Taste different things. See if the food is the same or different. Learn new things. Hear different music. Try to communicate through language differences. To imagine what it would be like to live in that spot for a year. Or to come from that place. I ponder what would be different.

In what ways would I be different?

How to get to Places?

Airplane (despite the carbon footprint, unfortunately), train, car, bike. Cruise (not my preferred way to travel). Take a bus.

Walk.

Sail.

Canoe.

Ooh, air balloon would be fun!

What to take away from travel?

Memories.

Pictures – of course - but maybe also buying artwork. Or a trinket that reminds me of a place or a situation, hopefully positive! Something that would fit into my backpack.

Travelling makes me dream of what would be like if I was a native of the place. Or if I moved there. Or stayed for a year. I'll try not to consider the reasons why I wouldn’t live there – my usual gripe is crowds.

Most importantly, I like taking away an understanding – or a better understanding - of the people who live there and how they’re similar and different from me, my family, and my way of life.

Why Does the Impulse Plague Me So?

Sunsets in Tropical Places

Is it boredom with my day-to-day life? Is it curiosity? Daydreaming ?

Is it regret that the world is so big and I’ll never see/understand it all?

Honestly, it's because of all the books I read. Writers know how to make a place seem fabulous or exciting or so cozy that I just want to be there.

Why are set in places I’ve never been to make the place seem SO VERY interesting?

Where Would You Recommend?

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