The Nosy Traveler

Travelers are nosy people, but in a good way! We love to see what is beyond our everyday existence. Being inquisitive motivates us to travel the world, pulling our luggage behind us.

We don’t just dream of the places we would like to see, we go for it, uncomfortable plane seats and all. The joy that we find so far from home is priceless and so worth the hassles.

On one of my first trips to Europe, I traveled with a gentleman who didn’t really want to leave the United States, but did not trust me to go alone. It was a guided tour of eight countries in thirteen days! Needless to say, we did a lot of riding in an air-conditioned bus, but I will still happy!

When we arrived in London, I was beyond giddy! It was like I had been dropped into one of my Robert Ludlum spy adventures, as I walked on Trafalgar Square and Piccadilly Circus. When we got lost on the Underground, people showed such compassion, helping us find out way back to Kensington where our hotel was located.

I tried to go to every museum wherever we were, but time constraints prevented it. Yet, marble statues and plaster on ceilings with beautiful frescoes brought smiles to my face, and I was enthralled with ancient buildings and art from centuries removed.

Around the sixth day of the trip, while in Lucerne, Switzerland, my traveling companion asked me a question that trumpeted his unhappiness. He asked, “Are we going to look at another old building?” I looked at him as though he had lost his mind, for isn’t that why people go to Europe? Of course, we were going to see “old” buildings for about another week.

I learned then that in traveling together, compatibility is crucial. By the time we arrived in Paris, with Madrid in our sights, he was not willing to go any further. He told me as we looked at the grandeur of the Eiffel Tower, that wonder that isn’t a derivative of any other structure, that he wanted me to find us a flight to go home the next day.

He declared once we arrived back in America and he had kissed the ground at Hartsfield International Airport, “We are not leaving America again!” I don’t have to tell you how that relationship ended, do I?

I used to tell my students in my Marriage and Family classes to never marry anyone until you have taken a trip with them. Real personalities emerge when the inevitable trials and problems come when people travel, and you get to see behind the mask of niceness and civility that is meant to impress you. If your travel companion insist on only doing what they like, it is a precursor to the marriage.

The next year after that incident in Paris, I traveled to Madrid alone, walking the Gran Via and enjoying the laughter of people as they walked arm in arm each evening. What peace I enjoyed being alone to go where I wanted to go, stay as long as I wanted, and speak to whomever I wished. I practically lived in the Prado and the other museums of Madrid, happy as a lark.

Travel is meant for hearts that long for answers regarding the food, art, habits, and lives of people who live in other places. Some people go to the beach and never venture farther than a few steps past their hotels, and that’s okay for them.

For me, travel means bursting my comfort zone completely apart, eating with the locals, telling them of my life and listening to them relate their dreams, aspirations, and hopes. I marvel at how similar we are, just human beings living in different cultures with varying norms and values, but all in search of understanding the world around us.

Written for the Wordle Challenge by Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie, “A Way with Words,” in which we were asked to make a wordle of our favorite words and write a story or poem. My twelve words are: dream, inquisitive, laughter, joy, enthralled, peace, together, smile, grandeur, priceless, and compassion.
Fandango prompt is
Plaster. Ragtag prompt is Marble. Your Daily Prompt is Derivative. Word of the Day Challenge is Dream.

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