Travel, Wonder and Wanderlust

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The Philosophy of Travel

“A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.”
— Lao Tzu

We always look forward to travelling yet, when we are clearly asked why we do so, we tend to give superficial answers. Superficial in the sense that we may say that we need to get away from our work stress or plan to see the world. These are the most common answers when asked why we travel. But as Alain de Botton puts it in his book The Art of Travel, we don’t seem to ask ourselves the deeper reasons for why we travel.  We say we do it for pleasure, yet know that it may be quite exhausting, from money to energy, but yet we do it anyway. Maybe it really is a way for us to get away from out current situation, which allows us to think while we are away, when we are not in our comfort zones. It is this that may give us a better objective view of our life decisions and situations. It is through this we may be better people.

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Travel Broadens The Mind

“Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all of one’s lifetime.”
— Mark Twain

Travel is a way for us to expose ourselves to different cultures, and is only by that we are able to become citizens of the world, washing away all our prejudices and ideas of normalcy. Travel also enriches the soul, as it enables us to better understand ourselves, and as Tolkein so very aptly put it, “not all who wander are lost.” When we travel we allow ourselves to be out of our comfort zones, which allows for us to open up to new ideas. It is at these instances we are more able to observe and notice things that we don’t normally do. Such an example is where we learn of a specific culture or language that we take for granted. Its when you learn that Italian and Spanish are similar sounding. Its when you learn that Thailand has never been conquered throughout their history. It is when you learn that colonisation has its benefits and darker side.

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Nicholas Ng

Nicholas Ng is a restaurant critic, travelogue and opinion columnist which is curated on Food For Thought. He has been a freelance writer for 10 years and has previously worked as a lawyer. He currently is the Managing Director of Black Wolf Digital, a digital marketing agency.