This is how I came to make the decisions to make a trip (each trip had a different motivation). I’ll tell you why I left. In the second part of the article, I will show you the benefits, the positive and often unexpected consequences of all my travels.
Why did I decide to travel?
You know how I got started on my very first trip? It was a friend who called me saying: “ Hey, Jeremy, do you want to go visit Oslo next month? » . Being fascinated by this country since my adolescence, I answered yes without really knowing what I was getting into.
I was far from imagining that a few years later, I would have made travel a way of life in its own right , me the little Norman who never set foot outside my native region more than once a year (and again, never to go very far).
In short, an opportunity presented itself, I seized it, and that’s how I discovered Oslo and Norway for the first time in my life, in the spring of 2010.
To fulfill a childhood dream
Since my adolescence, I have been passionate about Scandinavia. The reason may surprise you: it basically has nothing to do with travel. It’s the music that made me interested in this region of the world (metal, in particular). Then came the interest in Norse mythology. At 24, I decided to move to Sweden, to my dear city of Gothenburg , in order to fulfill the desire to live in the country of metal (and to fulfill the dream of the child that I was (and that I’m still a little 🙂 )).
To learn new languages
With the passion for travel came the passion for languages. It’s going to sound silly to you, but I thought it was fantastic to be able to communicate using words other than those that have been mine since I was young.
I started to learn a lot of languages, without fully mastering any of them. Italian and Swedish are languages that I vaguely mumble after long and repeated stays in these two countries. I manage in Spanish (having lived in Andalusia at one time), and since I live in Zagreb I am learning Croatian (at least the basics because it is a really complicated language).
English doesn’t bother me anymore: it’s the official language of travellers , the one I speak most of the time since I started on the road.
To break my received ideas about certain peoples
There are two trips that I made, not to satisfy the desire to discover a country, but because I had in mind a terribly bad image of a people.
It was Spain and Italy that I had in mind , without really knowing why (well, yes, the Italians are because of football). It is for this reason that I have been to discover Andalusia on several occasions (I still have plenty of places to explore in Spain, especially Galicia which attracts me more and more), and that I go to least once a year in Italy, a country that I love very much (even though I went there with preconceptions as long as my arm).
In short, if you are wondering why travel, here is a good reason: to break down your preconceived ideas, your prejudices, by confronting them with the real world . Sometimes these prejudices will be confirmed, sometimes (often) they will be erased.
Out of sheer curiosity
On TV, in an article, in conversation. Or I meet a guy who comes from a somewhat exotic place, about which I don’t have the slightest preconception. This is the kind of stuff that will tickle my curiosity, and that will make me want to go there immediately.
This is how, for example, I went to Malaysia , during my trip to Southeast Asia . I had no idea what could be hiding behind this funny name, so since I was not far, I went there.
Because plane tickets were cheap
You’re going to tell me, if there’s a stupid reason to travel , it’s this one. But after all, why not ! In fact, that’s how I went to a lot of European destinations. Places where I will certainly have gone later, but for which I had my hand forced because at a specific moment there was a plane ticket at an absolutely irresistible price .
In addition, as I am clever and I know how to find cheap plane tickets , this is the kind of thing that happens to me very often. I couldn’t even tell you where I went because of cheap flights, there are plenty of them!
To take my mind off things and go on a media diet
When I lived in France, I lived there all year round, it was very difficult for me to take a step back and manage not to suffer from the ambient gloom propagated all day long by the media and their bad news.
However, once I set foot outside and instantly cut off all active and passive sources of information, I realized that this heavy atmosphere was anything but inevitable .