As we begin the new year, many of us think about upcoming travel, either planned trips or the dream of some trip in the future.
Anticipation is one of the richer joys of travel, and having an upcoming trip can give you something to look forward to that stands out from the day-to-day routine. Of course, one of the goals of The Meaningful Traveler is to learn to discover the wonder that surrounds us in our daily lives. But I wouldn’t be honest if I didn’t admit to looking forward to my next pleasure trip a bit more than to taking the dog to the vet, filling out year-end tax forms or sitting through another exhilarating PTA meeting.
With that in mind, check out this article on different ways to plan your next trip: http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/travel/2013798104_travelahead02.html
If you’ve spent much time here at The Meaningful Traveler – especially if you’ve checked out any of the various Tips for Meaningful Travel (in general, for business or for intergenerational travel) – you’ll recognize some of the points in the article. But let me focus on one in particular.
In the point on seeking adventure, they note that each person will define “adventure” differently: driving downtown alone may be gutsier for one person than an Amazon River expedition is for another. I couldn’t agree more. We all need to take more risks and get out of our comfort zones. That’s how we grow and experience life more. But how we do it will look very different based on your attitude, experience and the risk tolerance of both you and your traveling companions.
This article hit a nerve because only two days earlier, my son, Sumner, had just returned from a winter youth conference whose theme was “Transformation.” We were discussing goals and resolutions for 2011 and he noted that his were to “live life more simply and more dangerously.”
“More dangerously?” I queried. “Isn’t that just asking for trouble?”
He calmly countered my question with one of his own: “Why is it that as Christians, we are constantly praying for safety?”
I responded, a bit flippantly I must confess: “Because if we get hurt, we can’t serve God as well.”
“Can’t we?” he replied.
I don’t know what adventure will look like for you. I’m not sure, for that matter, what it looks like specifically for me this year either. I just know that in my teenage son’s comment lies more insight and wisdom than I can process at this moment. And I know that somewhere in all that is a call to trust God more and live a life where comfort isn’t my highest ambition.
After all, I also know this from experience: You don’t find as much meaning when you play it safe.