I don’t like traveling.
I know, I know. I am a vicious liar. Since I graduated in 2007 here is my places I’ve been list. South Africa, Botswana, California, Czech Republic, Hungary, Germany, London. How can I possibly hate travel?
It takes time and money. It involves big crowds of people I don’t know and so I’m more likely to make a sarcastic comment out of their earshot than talk to them. Delays happen (volcano anyone?). You leave things places (good bye favorite jacket, cell phone adapter, favorite sweatshirt). Traveling home from wherever you went is always awful because you regret leaving wherever you were. I have been places but I like to stay somewhere an extended time if I do go. Hence this whole being on foreign continents a year at a time business.
So this weekend I traveled across the country that I have been living in all year. My organization has teachers in the center (Prague), east (Ostrava), and West (Me!). I hadn’t gotten a chance to get out to Ostrava, see the city and the teacher friends I know. A shortened Friday allowed me to embark on a 7 hour bus and train journey to the other side of the Czech Republic.
I have to be honest. Ostrava isn’t that awesome. I felt like they showed me the whole city in about thirty minutes. It was certainly a city but not much seemed to be going on. Despite this, I had a great time. Why? I was with friends. The biggest reason to travel this year hasn’t been to see cool things or do fun things (though both have happened in great supply). It has been to see and connect with the people I know. See their flats, talk about their experiences and see how they are doing. And have lots of fun together.
I have said pretty much my whole life that as long as I have a roof over my head and I’m well-fed I’ll be happy. I need to change this a bit. I’m still committed to the food part. Feed me well I’ll love you forever. But where I live doesn’t matter. Give me a tent in a swamp, a lean-to in a forest, a communist-era flat in Europe with the most ridiculous nonsensical bathroom set-up I have ever seen. Just give me people who are awesome, who I care for and who care for me. I’ll be perfectly content. And I will travel whatever distance necessary to get to where they are.