I love this travel quote! In this age of terrorism, where minutes after some horrific event occurs the entire world is informed, it can be scary to set off for the unknown. I feel that we have created a mistrust of all humans. It’s a truth that is hard to justify.
As someone who loves to travel to places as unknown as possible, or at least on few itineraries, I have to stop myself from scoffing out loud at someone’s fears. I scold and remind myself that everyone has fears. I am scared of tight spaces and being out of control, and probably a multitude of other things if I’m honest. But, I’m not scared of going…anywhere, to any country, because I know that in every corner of this earth people are basically good. They are on my side. They want to be hospitable, helpful, and even friendly. Everyone. Everywhere!
I know this in my gut, in my inner being. I know it. I’ve experienced it, over and over again. When we were in a car accident in Eastern Turkey and we were waiting by the side of the hot, dusty road, car after car of people stopped to hand us bottles of water, snacks, offer us lunch. Everyone from the policeman to the gas station customer wanted us to be comfortable and lamented the state of the roads. They were one our side. No one looked at us as foreigners and tried to take advantage of us.
So, I’m not scared to travel anywhere. However, just because I’m not scared and I have faith in people, doesn’t mean that I’m not cautious, aware, informed. When I’m choosing a destination, I certainly pay attention to the latest red flag areas, and many times I won’t travel there. I’m not going to travel in a current war zone, like Syria. That would just be asking for trouble. Not being scared and being reckless are two separate things.
Once I’m on my trip, I don’t often listen to the news, but I’m alert. Even in “safe” cities like London or Paris, I try not to get to complacent. I make an effort to be on guard and in tune to what is going on around me. Maybe there isn’t a terrorist threat, but there still is a pick-pocket threat or some other threat. The argument could be made, then, that nowhere is really safe. Everyone should just stay at home, but is home always that safe?
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