As far as I can remember, I’ve always loved to go somewhere. As a child, my family didn’t travel much but when we did, it was always to a place that was exciting. My parents traveled quite a bit when I was growing up: my dad traveled for business though only locally; my mom also traveled but as part of her part time hobby, which was selling cosmetics.
In college, I’d save up my money so I can travel. I was fascinated by the Grand Canyon and it’s beauty, saw a few games at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, snorkeled in the Florida Keys, got very silly in Las Vegas, saw the flat lands of Cedar Rapids for several days, admired the luxurious life and taste of Chicago, ate cheese in Wisconsin, window shopped at the Mall of America in Minneapolis, watched the sunset in St. Augustine, soothed my tired muscles in a hot tub in New Orleans, said hello to Abe Lincoln at the National Mall in Washington, DC, bought boiled peanuts in Alabama, drove on Pacific Coast Highway in a rented convertible all the way to Hearst Castle, realized the vastness and strength of the trees in Yosemite, zigzagged in San Francisco, ate pea soup in Sta. Barbara, CA, imagined the Dutch life in Solvang, CA, went to see a navy ship in San Diego, gambled and lost $20 in Reno at age 21, sun bathed in Catalina Island, took Amtrak in the Midwest, drank hot coffee in Seattle, saw the snow capped beauty of Mt. Rainier, ate Philly cheesesteak in Philadelphia, imagined the tea party in Boston, and slowed my life a bit in Amish Country in Pennsylvania.
After college and graduate school, more adventures came: I drove and hiked a bit to the top of a dormant volcano in Maui to see the sunrise, and kayaked in Oahu. In Alaska, I watched salmon spawning in Sitka, jumped in the air in Juneau, and took a helicopter ride to see the Fjords. I climbed the Eiffel Tower, waved to the queen in London, ate the most delicious margherita pizza in Florence, biked in Munich, praised God in Rome, traveled on the bullet train from London to Paris, watched the gondolas in Venice, got bored in Milan, hung out at Clarke Quay in Singapore, ate a bowl of pho at Chinatown in Montreal, and rode the fiery maid of the mist in Niagara Falls and thought the Canada side is way prettier than the US side.
Once I started working, the desire for seeing the world became greater: rode the jeepney in the Philippines, waded through the blue waters of Cancun, pretended to be Mayan in Chitzen Itza, climbed the stairs to see the Buddha in Hong Kong, conquered the Great Wall, admired the Terra Cotta Warriors in Xi’an, ate tofu in sweet syrup in Boracay, ate empanadas in Buenos Aires, watched the sunrise in Uruguay, bowed to all kinds of Buddhas in Bangkok, and drank a 50c beer in Siem Reap.
Oh! The places I have yet to go… the world is beckoning my name to come visit. I looked at all kinds of travel quotes: some fit me, others seemed to be beyond what I was designed for. So, let me just say that I travel to seek the world. I travel because it’s long lasting than any material token I could buy. I travel because it’s a dream. And sometimes, dreams do come true.
(Photo courtesy of Pinterest)