My Travel Philosophy

Selfie with my jelly doughnut!
     Traveling is always an exciting, enriching and unforgettable adventure! Every place I have traveled has given me memories I will treasure for the rest of my life. But that is not to say that traveling is always easy - in fact, most of the time it is quite a challenge. What makes all of the effort worth it is when I take with me the attitude of enjoying the moment.

     That is the most important thing to know if you are going to travel, especially to another country. Having an attitude that is ready to relax and enjoy the moment has made such a difference in my travel experience! I have finally learned to see that even the difficulties are a part of the whole adventure.

     Life is like that, really - when I remember everything happens for a reason, in the timing of Providence, then I know that the circumstances I can't control are never a waste of time - I can even learn from them, which really makes it all much more exciting!

One of my favorite quotes on our most recent trip to England was this one by Margaret Lee Runbeck:
"Happiness is not a state to arrive at, but a manner of traveling."

Dutch apple pie in Haarlem.
Dutch apple pie in Haarlem.
     Happiness and trust combined is the best manner of traveling, if I may paraphrase. It is easy to focus on the day's destination as the time when you will actually begin enjoying yourself, rather than enjoying every experience from the moment you get up to the moment your head hits the pillow.

     If you travel with the former attitude (which I often have), then any little difficulty, such as just missing the bus, or worrying that you will arrive at your destination with not enough time to see everything you had planned to see, or wishing you had left earlier because a particular restaurant might close before you get there, or basically anything that changes your plans, will distract you from the sights and sounds around you. (Worrying also makes me rather grumpy, too, and that not the most effective way to make good memories.)

     But if you travel to enjoy and learn from every moment you will make many, many more good memories - I know I have!

      Things will go wrong; that is inevitable. But those are so often the most memorable moments! (They also make great stories.) For instance, we had to spend most of a day trying to track down a package that our family sent to us while we were in London. It was in a completely different part of town that we were not ever planning to visit, which meant we couldn't even combine our errand with other sightseeing. However, we made some happy discoveries along the way. My favorite discovery was popping into a little pastry shop for coffee where we found some delicious jelly donuts for only 60 pence a piece! I was happily taking selfies of our spoils while we waited for our train at the station. :)

The Hotel des Invalides... closed.
The Hotel des Invalides... closed.
     We made one of the most frustrating of blunders while in Paris when we forgot that there is a one-hour time difference between London and Paris, which meant that we arrived at the Hotel des Invalides right as they closed. I was ready to kick those doors that had literally just closed in my face! But... we got to walk all around Paris that day in the rain as we made our way over to the Hotel - and it was not simply Paris, but the famous Latin Quarter and the Left Bank. It was magnifique! :) Plus, we saw the back of Rodin's 'The Thinker' in the Rodin Museum garden just across the street from the Hotel des Invalides! I would say it definitely turned out to be a win, despite our inability to remember where time zones change.

Happening upon Rodin's 'The Thinker'!
Happening upon Rodin's 'The Thinker'!
     Our difficulties tend to lead us to delicious pastries, because we were privileged to some delicious Dutch apple pie in Haarlem when we couldn't find our B&B and had to take shelter inside a place with wifi. So, you never know what happy (and delicious) memories you'll make while you're making mistakes!

     Remember: Traveling is not not only when you're in the museums or out to tea - when you're traveling, you're always traveling!

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