There is no substitute for it, the wafting of spices in a morroccon souk, the elation of a summit in a far away land. The lilting chorus from a church as you wander through the white architectural genius of Montmartre. Specific moments that live on inside you for the rest of your life, because you were able to step out of the mundane existence of routine and work to follow along the road less travelled.
We are so lucky to live in this world at this time. Travel is easy and efficient, it’s extremely cost effective and nothing is out of bounds. We can go anywhere and still feel at home. Because technology has provided us the solutions to take everything with us and to access information like we never left home. We can contact our families and friends by video, speaking to them and seeing them as if we are still there. We can book hotels, airbnbs, and bed and breakfasts in the most beautiful of places. We can see transport details and distances and how to traverse them in seconds. We can book adventures, sightseeing, trips to wineries and rare unique places from the past, reading reviews and blogs from those who have gone before, tailoring every aspect of our life to meet our needs. And all of this can be done with a touch of a finger with the oblong in our hands.
For a long time, I still needed a laptop when I travelled to work overseas. Although advancements have been made to slimline and lighten them, most short haul flights have 7 kgs baggage limits, so the 2kgs needed for my laptop was a big ask. It was impossible to make everything I may possibly need or want to fit into 5 kilograms. Then mobile phones, like the Samsung Galaxy s10, got bigger again, screen size and memory capabilities along with phone data that stretches to every corner of the globe increased, the concept of dual sims meant I could keep my home phone number and access to everything and everyone on it, then buy cheap sims in the countries I was visiting use local data, and source information on a budget, this concept changed everything for me. Buying a sim that costs only a few dollars in every single country I’m required to work in. Nowadays smartphones have almost the same capabilities as computers and for travel they are imperative. It fascinates me that once I use to ask tourist offices about bus and train schedules and had a bag full of maps and brochures that I kept and collected as memories. Now it’s google maps and how long will it take? It shows me every form of transport boats, buses, trains, right down to uber and gives me every variation on reaching my destination, in exactly how long.
The days of rolls of film, walkmans and maps are long since gone. With the new smart phones, and their extreme capabilities, not a single adventure is missed, and I know exactly how long it will take to get there.
The safety aspect of having a smartphone is even more reassuring. If ever you feel threatened or in a bad situation you can just call your way out of it, by bluffing or actually calling in an emergency if it is one. When I’m hiking in faraway lands I use an application called maps.me that lets me know by metres if I have deviated from the trail and how to get back, or if there are alternative trails out of the area. This requires a phone with extremely long battery life as I usually walk for days, but the most recent and best of the smart phones all have this feature now.
The best thing about living now is that opportunities are limitless, the world is small enough to access every part of it and we have the technology that can feed the enjoyment of it. We no longer have to stay in one place to make money or a career.
Go on, Get out there!
To read more on topics like this, check out the travel category.