7 Ways Wandering is Like Reading a Really Good Book
Written by Lauren from Lauren on Location
“I think of life as a good book. The further you get into it, the more it begins to make sense.” –Harold Kushner
Unfortunately, I have never been a huge book reader. I have always been jealous of my friends who seemed to zoom through pages, those friends who seemed genuinely excited to conquer their next published adventure. Even though I try and I try, it takes A LOT for me to consider something a “good read.” Still, every once in a while, I come across something special. A book that entices me from the very first page, and I can’t put it down until I’ve sucked the binding dry. I effortlessly lose myself in its pages and find it delightfully difficult to maneuver my way out.
Luckily, for me, I’ve found a substitute for my lacking love of reading. Wandering provokes a similar sensation. Whether I’m in my own backyard or in a new place for the very first time, every time I wander I lose myself a little in the details.
7 ways wandering is like reading a really good book:
- It is unpredictable
An extraordinary author never allows a book’s plot to reveal itself. An extraordinary wanderer never knows what he or she will find on their next journey. No matter where I am or where I go, I can never be exactly sure what will come next.
- It is a way to escape reality
Reading someone else’s story allows you to leave your own world behind for a quick stint. But, if I’ve had a hard day, need a break from responsibility or simply want to clear my head, wandering provides a well needed distraction. I can throw on my headphones, pick a fitting playlist and allow my mind to wander wherever my legs will take me.
- Oh, the people I meet
A compelling story is shaped by its characters. In all of the places I’ve wandered, the people in those places have had some of the biggest impact. Living in a big city such as New York or Madrid exposes you to a wealth of inspiring characters on any given day.
- It satisfies my senses
An exceptional read thrusts you right into the scene. You feel what the character is feels, see what the character sees, smell what they smell. For me, wandering satisfies those same senses. The alluring doughy odor of baguettes fresh out of the oven as I pass a bakery; the innocent giggles of two little girls holding hands and skipping in the park. Wandering helps me get in touch with my feelings and better appreciate the lure of the world around me.
- When I wander, I learn
Just as a good book should leave the reader with a lesson to add to their repertoire, every time I wander, I take a little something back with me. Whether I uncover something new about where I am, someone else, or even myself, I am always learning.
- The thrill of the adventure
The curious reader seeks something new and exciting with the turn of every page. The curious wanderer seeks something new and exciting every time they leave their home. Wanderers allow their instincts to lead the way. When I have the time I often wander in whichever way feels right at the moment.
- Once I start, it’s hard to stop
A good book keeps me reading because I can’t bare the suspense. Who doesn’t love a good cliffhanger? Wandering creates this same anticipation. Each time I’m on to something good but am forced to return to the real world, I’m left wanting more. My imagination runs wild until I am able to return and seek what lies around that next corner.
There is no doubt that reading someone else’s story can be both captivating and stimulating. Yet, the true wanderer finds it just as rewarding to set out and write their own.
Choosing Your Travel Companions Wisely
Written by Josie from Gild Society
We all love our friends and family, but let’s face it – who you travel with can sometimes make or break your experience. I believe there are two major types of leisure travel. There’s the vacation type that is primarily based on relaxation, taking it easy, finding peace and quiet, or simply spending time with the people closest to you in a carefree, beautiful place (think tropical getaways or renting a cabin in the woods). Then there’s the exploration type that focuses on exploring, sightseeing, trekking, outdoor sporting activities (kayaking, white water rafting, zip lining, hiking, etc.), and backpacking.
Since the intention of the first type of travel is relaxation, it doesn’t matter as much who you go with as long as you enjoy their company. However if the purpose of your trip is to explore a new place, the people you travel with can make all the difference. Most of these types of trips have a specific purpose or goal, like trekking the Inca Trail, hitting all the historical landmarks in London, or completing all the items on your bucket list for a specific location.
I’ve heard several times that it’s not a good idea to travel with friends. The argument is that traveling can bring out the “bad” sides of people you may have not seen before and it could negatively affect the friendship when you return home. I don’t completely agree with that – one of the best parts about traveling is being able to share the adventure with the people you love!
The best way to accomplish this is to make sure you and your buddies are aligned with the expectations for the trip. Here are some important aspects to consider when choosing your travel companions to ensure your trip is enjoyable and fulfilling for everyone.
Review the itinerary and activities together before you leave. Differences of opinion can cause conflict or make one of you sacrifice something you really want to do for the sake of keeping the peace. It’s helpful to have everyone lay out the things they want to do beforehand so the group can account for it and know what to expect. Don’t travel with a bossy or selfish friend that wants to make all the decisions.
Have similar budgets. Traveling costs money and there are ways to do it cheaply, or go all out and splurge. This is something you’ll want to discuss before the trip as well to make sure the group agrees on what kind of accommodations to book, whether to eat at pricier restaurants and how often, and what kinds of activities to do. You won’t want to miss out on anything, but at the same time it isn’t fair to expect a friend to do something if they can’t afford it.
Punctuality. You’ll need to be on time for trains, tours, flights, etc., especially if you’re trying to cover a lot on your itinerary. If you have a friend that isn’t good about being on time or likes to sleep in, he or she may not be the best person to take on your trip. Save them for your next relaxing getaway.
Mutual trust. Since exploration travel can put you in all kinds of situations, it’s important to trust the people you’re with. They won’t leave you drunk at the bar, let you run off with strangers, or misjudge a dangerous situation – they’ll help keep you safe. You have their back and they have yours.
Pet peeves. They can become 10x more annoying when you’re traveling. If you know your friend has a few annoying habits, make sure it’s something you can tolerate and try not to let them get to you during the trip. Also be aware of your own behaviors that may be irritating to others so you can be mindful and considerate!
Have similar mood and temperament. Traveling can be stressful and it’s important that you and your companions are able to handle any situation in a rational way. The group should be cohesive and it’s okay if everyone doesn’t agree on something as long as there’s a high level of respect for all opinions.
Have a lot in common and similar interests. This one is a given considering you’re traveling together, but you never know. You’ll be spending a LOT of time together, so make sure you have things to talk about or it could get awkward!
In essence, traveling can be one of the most rewarding experiences you can share with people, but sometimes the best of friends can realize they don’t travel well together.
This isn’t a testament to the strength of the relationship, it can just simply be a result of contrasting personalities, bad reactions to stressful situations, or differing travel goals and intentions. I’ve made some of my best friends traveling and it’s definitely possible, everyone just needs to be on the same page. And of course, don’t forget to have fun!!
By: Mareen from Miss Everywhere
Cape town is a beautiful landscape spot for all nature lovers and adventure admirers. During my first visit to this wonderful spot on earth I was impressed with all the opportunities this city has to offer. Whether you are enjoying the golden beaches of Camps Bay, escaping to a romantic wine tasting in the vineyards of Stellenbosch, doing a safari tour or hiking up Lion’s Head and the famous Table Mountain, Cape Town will definitely impress.
Where to stay: 12 Apostles Hotel & Spa. As a member of Leading Hotels of the World this little luxurious gem located on the coast offers premium deluxe service. Amenities include: a cinema and a lovely outdoor picnic area. My favourite spot was their award winning spa with outdoor condos for an extra close feel to nature during your treatment.
What to see: Chapman’s peak drive between Noordhoek and Hout Bay gives the most breathtaking views of the coast. Boulders beach in Simon’s Town, just a 20 minute drive from Cape Town, is not only a wonderful beach but also home to more than 2000 penguins. The popular saturday food market at Old Biscuit Mill in the heart of Woodstock to try delicious local food and get together withpeople from all over the world.
For the extra thrill: White shark dive in Gaansbai. Bungee jump off Bloukrans bridge which is the worlds highest bungee bridge.