As we welcome 2012 a couple of days from now, I’d like to share with you the learning and realization that our fellow nomads had in their travels.
For those who are new with my Meet the Nomads segment, it’s an interview section in FlipNomad wherein I feature different traveller from different countries and among the questions that I asked them is:
What’s the biggest realization that you’ve got out of travelling?
And here are their answers:
“We’re all the same. Of course there are cultural differences between people of different countries, but there’s a lot more that’s similar between us than different.” – Linda Martin of Indie Travel Podcast
“Sometimes a smile will bring you further than a dollar.” – Cengiz Yar Jr of ROTE
“That nature is supreme. My regard for it has multiplied manifold.” – Puneetinder Kaur Sidhu of Cutting Loose
“As I said before, we had the chance to discover great places, cultures and people. We feel that traveling is not only the best way to learn about the world we live in, but also a great way to learn about ourselves – as other fellow bloggers said here, traveling helps people discover they have so much in common.” – Adrian and Mary of Travel to Sun
“I’m addicted because there’s always more to see. Plus, no matter where you go, you can find similarities in the people around you. That search for things that are new and different, yet the discovery of the connections between all of us, is pretty special.” Abby Tegnelia of The Jungle Princess
“That no matter what kind of stereo types there are about people many times they are broken and you shouldn’t have a preconceived notion of what people or places are like. Just experience it while your there.” – Marcelo Arrambide of The Wandering Trader
“The best part of traveling is doing it with someone you care about and with whom you can share the experience. Traveling binds people closer together, and having just traveled solo for the first time in almost eight years I deeply felt the absence of long-time traveling companion and wife, Sarah.” – Keith Savage of Traveling Savage
“I thought I would “find myself and my role in the universe” as people usually say. I partially did, but all the traveling has confused me as well. I found my love for writing and helping travelers, and I realized how strong and independent I can be.
But at the same time I became more realistic about traveling, Asia and its pains and dark sides — it’s tough and depressing to be in the middle of slums of Cambodia or India, or refusing to give a 5-year old street child money in fear of the consequences. When you’ve witnessed the dark sides it changes you.” – Amanda Jane of Backpacking Tips Asia
“Without a doubt, how fortunate we are to have the opportunities we have. I truly believe that we only have one life and we shouldn’t waste it, so I plan to enjoy it as much as I can and make a real difference.” – Johnny Ward of One Step 4Ward
“Just like you and me, the overall majority of people around the world, no matter where or how they live, are in search of a happy, peaceful existence while on this planet.” – Earl Baron of Wandering Earl
“I am constantly amazed that so few Americans travel overseas. The question I am most often asked by my fellow countrymen is, “Aren’t you afraid?” There seems to be a pervasive belief in America that the world is full of terrorists and travel outside the borders of our country is dangerous. I’ve always believed that people everywhere are more alike than different, that we share the same hopes and fears, and my travels have confirmed this. Whenever possible, I tell people that there is nothing to fear.” – Barbara Weibel of Hole in the Donut
“I’m very fortunate to be a Canadian and I will never have to worry about many of the things other people do. I don’t worry about where my next meal will come from, if I need to be afraid of the police or my government. As a woman I can say what I like and go wherever I want.” – Ayngelina Brogan of Bacon is Magic
“It was while travelling that I found the business that I am in now. Before I was the traveller that I am today I had no career and no idea about what to do for work that would interest me. I knew that I wanted to work in the travel related field, so developing travel websites is what I ended up doing.” – James Clark of Nomadic Notes
“You never have enough time….ever.” – Sherry Ott of Ottsworld
“Cliché, but that people around the world are the same. We all just want to be happy, have good relationships, pay the bills and be with our family. People everywhere just want to help; they want to help you find a room, or the bus, or meal or…anything. People just want to help.” – Gillian Duffy of One Giant Step
“That you can’t run away from your decisions. Every decision you make isn’t muted by daily life, but stares at you unblinking. This discovery has pushed me towards being more honest with myself, and others.” – Jeannie Mark of Nomadic Chick
“I’ve been pretty amazed that people around the world are as good as they are at separating their views of a country’s government versus its citizens. For a few years after 9/11/01, I didn’t feel super comfortable traveling. I didn’t know what to expect because many people were unhappy with President Bush for a number of reasons.
To my surprise, when I traveled to China and South Africa, as well as other countries, the vast majority of people I met treated me well. They somehow were able to connect with me as an individual while acknowledging the government separately.” – Lisa Egle of The Chicky Bus
“That one the whole most people are really good and that there is more that connects us than separates us.” – Matthew Long of The Landlopers
“I used to think that it was travel that makes us grow as people. People constantly relate to the travel experience as a method for becoming a more open, outgoing, adventurous and mature person. Travel forces us to open our minds, it forces to meet new people and escape our comfort zones. However, my realization is that we can do that at home as well.
Travel has a way of cracking our shell, but there is no reason that we need to travel around the world to learn how to open up and step out of our comfort zones. Even at home there are dozens of opportunities that arise each week that give us the chance to try something new or do something out of the ordinary, we just need to take better advantage of these situations at home.” – Brendan Van son of Brendan’s Adventure
“Not seeing it all is okay. At the start of my trip, I went from one place to another often moving quickly to the next destination. I wanted to see it all. I would get upset because I missed out on something from a destination I had already left from.
Eventually this style of traveling had me exhausted. I had to slow down. After I realized this, I took my time and just went with the flow. I’m not in any rush and just take it as it goes.” – Michael Tieso of Art of Backpacking
“Traveling made me realize that to search for happiness in the external world is a search without end. True happiness can only be found within oneself. If you are not happy in Paris, than there’s a good chance you won’t be happy in Rome. Although traveling is wonderful, it can often be very tiring.” – Leif Harum of The Runaway Guide
“The usual answer, it sounds so obvious and it pains me to say it but… there is far more to life than getting a good job and a big house. Everything about our trip so far has been amazing and I can’t imagine doing anything else. If you’ve got the means, you should be doing this if only for a little while!
We’ve also realised if you want to extend your trip for longer it is possible, it’s easy to say you want to but if you are serious about it there is ways and means to make it happen, it’s just a case of being pro-active.” – Poi and Kirsty of No Place to Be
Watch out for the 2nd Part of 2011 – A Year of Learning from the Nomads Part 2.