What is considered traveling? How far do you have to go? Does it only count if it’s personal or maybe even business? What do you need to see, do, or eat for you to say you’ve traveled to a place? How long do you stay for?
For example, if I lived in Florida my whole life but never went outside of my city, can I really vouch for living in Florida? In contrast, if I was a tourist who went to the theme parks and looked at all the buildings, what does this account for? Aren’t many tourist attractions generally monetarily based?
We’re on a 9 day road trip from South to North California and back. Redd’s not a big planner and I was down to flow with this. We only want to see nature and visit places with good vegan (or at least vegetarian) food. We only knew we wanted to go visit Redd’s sister in Sacramento and the Redwoods National Forrest. On the way to do the first of those two, we thought Yosemite would be good to add to the list. Then of course I went into planning mode and added other things to the list because we’re here… why not? Who knows what we’ll change as we navigate.
As I was planning, I had the opening questions in mind. Can we go to San Fran to see the Golden Gate Bridge and say we went? Do we even want to see it? Can we say we really saw Sac if we only walked around one neighborhood and went to one river? We could claim Redwoods because we’d camp and hike there, right? And overall, does this even matter?
I went to Japan once for almost 2 weeks. I didn’t see much, maybe a few not so prominent tourist attractions, and I ate Indian food and the vegetarian food my sis made. For awhile, I felt my trip was invalid because my time was short and I didn’t do the classic tourist things. Not to mention I was on a military base aka a mini America.
I still enjoyed myself. I loved their 99 cent yen store. I got a bunch of cool Japanese trinkets. I got to see my niece do karate and piano. I met my other two nieces for the first time. I walked the around and ate street dessert. I noticed how there was no trash. We took pictures with Geishas (above picture). I went on a trip with my niece to the aquarium. I went grocery shopping and didn’t understand most of the labels. I even rode the train.
I’m going to end up going to most if not all states in my next adventure. Whether I drive through, stop at a gas station, or spend the day there, the only thing that will define my experience is me.