02 July 2009

What Makes you Interesting?

I was reading a friend's dating-horror-story blog the other day, and one thing she said struck me. She said, "Travel makes you boring." What she meant by it was that the constant talk about travel doesn't set you apart or make you that interesting.

It got me thinking...and I am stuck in a conundrum of both agreeing and disagreeing. While I see her point -- I hate when people go on and on about their trips, apropos of nothing -- I find it harder to relate to someone with no sense of adventure, and no real desire to travel outside of their comfort zone.

I have talked about this before, but for me, travel was the first thing to really, truly push me out of my comfort zone. I am rather shy, and when I moved to Spain, it was tough. I was alone, away from my family (none of whom had really traveled before, and all of whom lived within about a 3 hour or so drive from where I grew up). I knew no one, I understood the language but couldn't speak it that well, and was a little lost. This was really hard at first, but I realized that the only way to make the best of the situation was to actually talk to someone. Someone I didn't know.

And I did. And it was awesome.

This experience really shaped me, and shaped my love of travel. I am generally solo, so never HAVE to talk to someone if I don't want to, but have met some of the most awesome people that way.

So I love travel. Books about journeys. Reading the New York Times travel page, getting travel fare emails, helping other travelers find their way. This doesn't mean I want to travel every day, I am a walking dichotomy of wanderlust and homebody. This also doesn't mean I talk much about my trips...maybe an anecdote or two, and my pics if someone wants to look, but I don't think most people want to hear much about other peoples' trips.

But it is a must for me. To be able to share this love with people who understand that fire that is within you -- this is why I love the friends I have met traveling, and the people with whom I've connected because of this common interest. And I have loved seeing my friends discover this within themselves. This passion, it is beyond just, "I enjoy travel."

1 comment:

Daniel said...

While I might have elicited a few yawns with 'vacation' photos of my travels, I believe that travel has had a substantive effect on me — by invigorating and engaging me and fundamentally changing me. Hence, I think that the positives far offset my penchant for showing off my pics! :)