Are you listening to foreign news and feel like yawning after every two seconds? “But I’m not a cool person in the eyes of society if I’m not updated,” you scold yourself. And keep listening.
Found a new travel blog? “Jesus, again someone is chattering how cool is to be in Australia or Kazakhstan. I do not care.”
Let’s be honest – most of us are not too interested in Iran or Norway or other countries in the world. Why should we? We scroll the news and have the same emotion while reading “TERRIBLE: 100 people died due to earthquake in Nepal” and “HOW CUTE: A Toddler Is Making a Cake”. Okay, the last one still makes you say “aww” (you better confess), but then it’s gone.
WHY don’t we care? Floods. Earthquakes. Genocides. Protests.
Beautiful buildings. Food. Sunsets. Hotels.
Meh. Yes, you make a click on those headlines and pictures, but does it really click in your head?
I’m honest – most of my life I didn’t give a shit about travel blogs or magazines, foreign news. But then something happened.
It’s called emotional connection. Let me give you an example. You read a headline “Two tourists were killed in Tajikistan”. Do you react somehow? Don’t think so. Let’s try again. “Two foreign cyclists were killed in Tajikistan”. What about the feelings now? If you are a cyclist by yourself you probably click better. “Two [enter you nationality] cyclists were killed in Tajikistan”. You got the point.
Of course, no need to be so dramatic. Let’s switch to poetics. Why is it like this – when someone is talking about Iran or Iranians, about Nepal or Nepali, I immediately start to listen? Simply because…
… their warm wind has touched my cheeks and messed my hair. Their crazy cold rain has made me completely wet and their hot sun has burnt my hair even more blonde. Their eyes have met mine and their laugh has made me laugh.
Their words have melted my heart, their tears have brought tears into my eyes. Our glasses have clinked and we have walked in the same rhythm.
I met those people, I got a look inside, we were together in the happiness, we shared our sad moments. I saw their nature, breathed their air. It’s easy to empathize.
I could upload beautiful photos. One photo says more than thousand words, right? Good. Beautiful. “I wish I was there,” you start thinking. But if you haven’t been there nor plan to go you have no emotional connection. You don’t have to.
The more I travel the more I feel. I have never been to Mozambique and therefore Mozambique is not in my heart. Yet. Wait, are you living there? Then it gets closer. It’s closer because I have the connection through you.
Our hearts are like unfinished globes, getting more detailed and bigger after each trip. Some time ago I didn’t have Iran on mine, now it’s just right there – next to Azerbaijan. Yep, my heart got bigger in the size of Iran.
But hey, why should I care about this post? I don’t even know the author, I have other stuff to think about. See, “Donald Trump got a new pair of underpants”. Isn’t it great?
When I first started traveling the world 7 years ago, I didn’t keep a good journal, and now I’m regretting it. Information like the names of people I met, conversations I had, feelings about a new experience, or what a particular town smelled like.