I’m crossing my fingers today doesn’t turn out to be the last day of NW’s $628 roundtrip from EWR to HKG for the week of Labor Day. But I won’t know until tomorrow.
I receive a more than a fair share of grief from my family over my travel habits (the latest being why I would want to go to a place like Costa Rica, where infrastructure we take for granted isn’t as developed). My reasons, though, are relatively simple, even if not everyone can understand them. The challenge of travel, of placing myself outside my comfort zone, and finding out how I perform in new situations, provides a kind of thrill I can’t explain. The two weeks I spent in Japan have left an impression on me I can’t describe, suffice to say I can vividly recall scenes from that trip even with my eyes open as I sit here typing. I simply love being in new places and having new experiences.
The other reason is that, like it or not, we’re a global-interconnected world, and there’s really no restreating from that. At least, not without a level of cost that most people, if given the choice, wouldn’t pay. Periodically, cries against overseas manufacturing arise, as an example, but nobody would want to pay the prices it would cost to build those items back home. Nor would they want to take the hit to productivity and the lower living standards that would result. Not that I plan to move in to a full-blown economic analysis, but my point is that since we now live in a global world, where information and people can move from one place to another faster than any time in human history, we should engage, rather than shy away from our fellow citizens. It’s fair to say the past few years have (finally) shown clearly to many Americans that what happens in other countries really can have a direct impact on what happens here. So, if I have to face the consequences of other groups’ choices more than ever before, I should certainly know as much as possible about them. And if in the midst of my travels, I can serve to change a few minds, all the better.