Having a holiday once or twice a year to a new destination certainly brings with it a welcome respite, but it doesn’t come close to the impact on yourself of relocating permanently. What I still struggle to understand is why more people don’t try living in a new location?
It was some 12 years ago now that I threw my life up in the air and moved to Pattaya in Thailand. I did not dislike my life before but was, I think the word I am looking for is, disillusioned. I could not understand how one could miss so many life opportunities by staying put in one location for the rest of your life.
Now, making a change in your life can start with baby steps. It could be a relocation within the country you live – just so you can freshen things up a little. But the real miracle happens when you immigrate.
Travel brings with it greater understanding
Every time I spend any form of time in a new county it brings with it new understanding and a more rounded view on us all as human beings. How can one develop and enrich ones life if you stay in the same town all your life?
The worlds land covers 148.94 million sq km (57.506 million sq mi) and yet most of us spend 95% of our life within a 25-30 square mile radius. Isn’t this just startlingly obvious of just how much life you miss out on?
If you don’t get out there and take on the world your existence can become an autonomous, limited and unfulfilled adventure.
According to a survey by One Poll in 2014, the average British person visits 7 countries in their lifetime. There are 195 countries in the world. We barely scrape the surface.
As I get older I realise travel is a key component to how we can keep life interesting on an intellectual level. Once we become and act in a more singular fashion we then learn to break free of any given societies ideological constraints it places on us.
Casing point, I am writing this blog in Siberia, Russia. What we must do is put the politicians to one side and consider the people. Truth is the Western world does not really know
We cannot rely
in mass media for the truth so must find it ourselves
Makar Vikhliyantsev, runs a pro-youth Putin group in the Russia, and he says, “We are in a war of mass medias, which, of course, the West is winning”. Makar blames “fake news” for any negative image his country might have – and says there’s no reason for British and Russian people to be enemies.
“If someone really wants to know the truth they should come here. The football fans during the World Cup here this summer – they saw Russia.”
And he is right. I have visited Russia twice now and every time I have warmed to the Russian hospitality and culture. They are nice to each other and have decent manners, something I find increasingly wanting in the Western world. In the West we have become far more self-centered and selfish, yet in Russia they are willing to help others.
I was in Lake Baikal and I walked the frozen lake to a small group who were fishing, they had drilled holes in the ice to do so. As I arrived they realised I was English and immediately offered me a vodka and sandwich. This was typical of my experience in meeting a Russian for the first time. This kind of thing does not happen in the UK.
My point here is when we stay ideologically restrained and controlled by our own countries media, chances are we are being manipulated and end up getting it wrong. To go and discover the truths for ourselves is the only way.
Frustrated when I stay put, enriched when I travel
I find now that I have an insatiable appetite to travel and to keep learning and discovering. When a new culture at first seems odd or obscure I then learn why it is that way and often think it is better than my domestic cultural learning.
Small things that spring to mind. Maybe it would be better for a Western household to take their shoes off before entering a home like Thais and other nationalities do? Its cleaner for starters. The Thais also use a bum gun to initially clean their bottoms – now when I go back to the UK I find it disgusting to clean with only paper. Thai’s Wai rather than shake hands, again
I have now live in Thailand for over 12 years and more recently relocated 5 hours from Pattaya to Hua Hin. I had a number of motives for this. The situation I now find myself is exactly how I view going back to the UK. I could not possibly relocate back to Pattaya again as I have kind of been there and done that. What would I gain by going back over trodden grounds? Any future move would have to be a new location.
There is no real right or wrong way to live our lives, yet to experience only one way just seems a shame. Why miss out on all this new adventure and experiences?
Life is so tragically short, yet to stay in one small contained area seems the biggest tradegy of all.