Don't Travel

I don't mean to be a hater. But there is another side of the story. The so-called lifestyle gurus and permanent travelers seem convinced that their lifestyle is superior. The you too can do it is the biggest hint that their path is preferred. Certainly they don't literally believe it, but rather it is an aspect of their aspirational advertising. Don't believe them.

Pu'uhonua o Honaunau

Travel is Boring

There are lots of details and yet never enough to deal with the minutae of catching a bus, getting a place for the night, accessing the Internet, etc. Really lots of boring technicalities. These things rarely if ever see the light of day on the travel tout blogs.

Travel is Stressful

Rare (and sometimes terrifying) illnesses, third-world healthcare and first aid, pickpockets and worse. Again, rarely to be found out there. But really this is a big part of why people don't travel, and frankly they shouldn't.

Travel is Destructive

The costs are not merely on the traveler, but on the planet. Not to be cliche, but the very act of traveling to encounter the world changes it in obvious ways, and in some sense degrades and destroys that which is being pursued. Oh sure, one individual may have a small impact, but this is where the travel blogs cause even more damage. Their main goal is to share stories, page-views, social media follower headcount (and of course make friends). The result is more people traveling. It is indeed a catch-22.

This is apart from the absolutely horrific effect of airplane travel on the environment. The frequent flyers of the world should not be so proud of the miles logged, but chagrined at the effect they are having on climate change and environmental destruction.

Travel is Unnecessary

The travel writers and lifestyle gurus are truly panglossian in the certainty of traveling afar and its positive effects. Voltaire knew better, and skewered this way of thinking which was prominent in his age as well as today.

So for goodness sake, don't travel. Stay at home and get off the travel blogs. They are a siren song of unreality. Better to tend our own gardens.