Is travel necessary? - Fiberglass RV


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Old 06-14-2015, 05:53 AM   #1
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Is travel necessary?

One thing travel teaches is that people who live in deeply rooted, pre-modern cultures are usually calmer, happier and more fulfilled than we are, despite their relative lack of comfort, convenience and material possessions. Very rarely do they feel the desire to travel, and it certainly plays no part in their idea of a life well lived. But we’re never going to be a Mayo villager in the Mexican thorn forest, or a Hadzabe hunter in Tanzania, or a ninth-generation midwife in the Atlas Mountains of Morocco. Modern consumer living comes with a built-in restlessness and dissatisfaction. It leads to questions like: what is the good life and am I living it?

Travel enables us to see our own culture more clearly, by contrasting it against others. And here we must make a distinction between travel, which takes the traveller out of his or her comfort zone, and tourism, which strives to maximize comfort and familiarity in a foreign setting. A good travel experience is not relaxing, but stimulating and taxing. The senses are on full alert. The mind struggles to keep up with the bombardment of unfamiliar data, the linguistic difficulties, the puzzles and queries and possible threats.

More at Aeon Ideas - Aeon Ideas - richard grant on Is travel a necessary ...
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Old 06-14-2015, 08:17 AM   #2
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Necessary?

Before we "got modern", we managed to populate every niche on the planet except Antartica. There are always some that want to see what's over the next hill and those that want to stay by the fire. I live in a rural area and there are adults here that have never been out of the county. Most folks want to explore. Modern life holds folks back. When we leave, we need to find a house sitter to take care of the chickens and dogs, arrange to get the grass cut, move the cattle to a pasture with enough grass for the time we are gone. We are retired but for those working, their travel time is limited. And then there is the money issue. Modern living restricts our wanderlust but I think the desire to travel is natural whether we are modern or prehistoric.
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Old 06-14-2015, 09:12 AM   #3
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John, well said. We do not "need" to travel but when we open our eyes to others, near or far, it expands our horizons and helps us to appreciate with gratitude our life experience as well as the experience of others. We have always found travel to be "taxing" as well as enriching whether going to a community fair nearby or to far flung places where other tongues are spoken.
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Old 06-14-2015, 10:00 AM   #4
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I often touch on something close to that same question in my travel blog -- thetentsoloist.wordpress.com. (I'll have to change that name, it was just last year that I upgraded to my 13' Scamp. Wow! what a perfect way to travel!).
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Old 06-14-2015, 10:06 AM   #5
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People?

One of the best aspects of posts is reading what other think.

"Before we "got modern", we managed to populate every niche on the planet except Antartica."

In our travels I am always amazed by the amount of unpopulated land there is in North America. I suspect South America is very similar as well as a good chunk of Asia.

As we drive through the desert southwest we're always coming across desert that is unpopulated but blooms quite quickly with the addition of water. Water, something that reality dominates our world.

To travel or not travel is a choice. One has to be somewhere, eating, sleeping, doing whatever, generally I choose to do it all while traveling. To travel you in some measure need to eliminate the little anchors of life (grass, chickens, cattle.....).

"One thing travel teaches is that people who live in deeply rooted, pre-modern cultures are usually calmer." We find traveling so relaxing, finding we slip into our gentler selves rather quickly.

"A good travel experience is not relaxing, but stimulating and taxing. The senses are on full alert. The mind struggles to keep up with the bombardment of unfamiliar data, the linguistic difficulties, the puzzles and queries and possible threats"

It's certain that when we travel into new areas our mind is functioning at a faster pace, new sites, different culture.... bit I don't feel taxed or threatened, but rather stimulated and excited by the new and different.

Ginny and I are cleaning out the house and came across her log describing our first week of travel, it deals a lot with food we ate and particularly how we are eating differently and eating less.

I wonder if our new eating habits are partially from our new relaxed lives. (We brought some of my old pants to the Salvation Army yesterday, the waist was 10 inches larger than today's pants.) There was no conscious effort to lose weight when we began, it just happened.

As Ginny says we're blessed to be able to travel, I remind her at least in part it's a choice.
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Old 06-14-2015, 11:01 AM   #6
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We've always 'travelled' to learn more. We both agree that 'every day is a good day, if you've learned something new'. Although 'camping' restricts our travelling to North America, geocaching has expanded our 'wanderlust' exponentially. We've now geocached, in 18 different countries, in 49 of the USA states, and in 9 of the 10 provinces of Canada.

As Ginny (and Norm) indicate - "we are blessed to be able to travel." Here's to 'camping', as the 'modus operendi', and to 'geocaching, and learning' as our 'raison d'etre'.
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Old 06-14-2015, 11:55 AM   #7
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Dave,

Geocaching is a hoot...it's sort of like having a personal guide where ever you go. A local person often taking you to a special place.
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Old 06-14-2015, 01:03 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Linck View Post
Travel enables us to see our own culture more clearly, by contrasting it against others.
Which is why when my sisters and brothers and myself where younger my parents encouraged us to get out and see the rest of the world. We in turn have encouraged the younger members of our family to do the same before they got to settled into trying to pay off mortgages and raise children. We all felt it was important that they realize just how charmed a life we actually have here in North America and that we actually don't have to have all the stuff we think as young people we must have to be happy. As a family one might not be wrong in suggesting that some of us have a bit of an entitlement issue.

Personally I have traveled a fair bit for work & personal vacations. Have seen some pretty disturbing things in places that I was not comfortable in & can't get out of fast enough. I have also been to beautiful places where people live happily with very few possessions even though they struggle just to put food on the table. I have visited places that others have indicated they are fearful of traveling & had little to no problems while there & I would go back again. I have visited others that some would suggest are safe places to travel & had not so great experiences with the darker side of the area that travel logs seem to have forgotten to mention. My work often took me to some areas of cities that I suspect the tour guides would prefer tourist not know about. I lost a sister in law a few years ago due to a travel misadventure overseas that went very wrong in a part of the world she loved to visit but I personally have no desire to visit & never felt comfortable about her travel there on her own. Being one of the few Vancouver professional fire fighters at the time she also had more than a little bit of self assurance to feel brave enough to travel there on her own. Although its painful to have lost her, its comforting in knowing she was doing what she loved to do in a place she loved to visit. I am happy she had the means & right to make those chooses for herself. Not everyone has the ablitly or means to do so.

I have been to a number of places that I could see myself living very comfortable with far fewer possessions, but it always feels good when the plane does its final approach to Vancouver International Airpot and I see the city lights and the mountain side where I live. I give a little thanks for having such a great place to live & a life where I have the freedom to go where I want and choose what I need and don't need & others in my family have the same.

Travel has shown me very clearly that not everyone has the most basic things those of us who live in Canada and the US take for granted & we should be far more grateful than what we are most days.
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Old 06-14-2015, 07:08 PM   #9
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I am really enjoying reading all your stories .... we each have our own reasons for travelling and I appreciate the stories you are all sharing.
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Old 06-15-2015, 02:32 AM   #10
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If God had wanted us to stay in one place, He would have given us roots instead of feet.
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Old 06-15-2015, 03:59 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Roger C H View Post
If God had wanted us to stay in one place, He would have given us roots instead of feet.
Nothing against God, one of the primary impediments to travel for one partner or the other is their 'emotional roots'. Ginny was fond of saying if you give your children wings they will fly. Some people have wings, others don't.
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Old 06-15-2015, 05:47 AM   #12
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For over 20 years, we moved every 3 years just because we could. We moved to different states where my husband could transfer. We took vacations and camped when we could. This was really good for the 2 boys although many, many people don't agree. They became resilient.

When my younger son with DS was in Kindergarten, we had planned a three week vacation driving from Tucson to Orlando in our aging Winnebago. His teacher threw a fit that we didn't value his education enough to not do this. She seemed to think that she could talk us out of doing it. Well, she didn't. I never thought much of "schooling" and later resorted to "unschooling" for my younger son which worked so well. We travel slowly and enjoy the journey.

I meet a lot of people that haven't even been out of the state, any one of those that we have lived in and I just can't imagine in my worst nightmare having done that. We did spend a LOT of money on travel and relocation but the memories we have will sustain us in our retirement years when we may have less than others.

The world awaits!
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Old 06-15-2015, 08:37 AM   #13
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"We did spend a LOT of money on travel and relocation but the memories we have will sustain us in our retirement years when we may have less than others."

We retired at 58 with no pensions or benefits and were just spending accumulated cash. I have not regretted it at all and from what you write I can tell you're comfortable with your decision. Really I consider what we did at 58 to be one of our better decisions ever.

Stuff is mostly useless. When my mother and Ginny's mother died all that stuff... no one really wanted any of it, not that it wasn't nice but rather everyone already has too much of their own stuff already.

Actually for a fact there will be times when you and your husband will just look at each other knowingly and smile, both thinking of some special moment in a private place, a place that you share in your memories.

Public school education is a whole different matter......
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Old 06-15-2015, 08:51 AM   #14
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What a great, thought provoking thread. I was particularly struck by this line: "A good travel experience is not relaxing, but stimulating and taxing." Although I've had plenty of very relaxed journeys, the most memorable ones have probably been the ones that have taken me out of my comfort zone, exposed me to totally new ideas and/or challenged me physically. It seems to me that some people are curious about the world and some people just aren't. You don't have to travel very far to have an adventure. Adventure is mostly a state of mind. It always amazes me, in talking to my neighbors, how many of them have never been to some of the beautiful and interesting places right here in my own county even though they've lived here all their lives!
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Old 06-15-2015, 10:20 AM   #15
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Wanderlust - Nature or Nurture?

Is traveling in our blood? Or, is it learned?
An interesting article at
The Wanderlust Gene: Why Some People Are Born To Travel
From an article referenced in above article:
"If an urge to explore rises in us innately, perhaps its foundation lies within our genome. In fact there is a mutation that pops up frequently in such discussions: a variant of a gene called DRD4, which helps control dopamine, a chemical brain messenger important in learning and reward. Researchers have repeatedly tied the variant, known as DRD4-7R and carried by roughly 20 percent of all humans, to curiosity and restlessness. Dozens of human studies have found that 7R makes people more likely to take risks; explore new places, ideas, foods, relationships, drugs, or sexual opportunities; and generally embrace movement, change, and adventure. Studies in animals simulating 7R’s actions suggest it increases their taste for both movement and novelty. (Not incidentally, it is also closely associated with ADHD.)"
Of course, the following statement, taken from the reference article, offers a grain of salt.
"According to LoPorto, while carriers of this genetic variant might be “incredibly resourceful, pioneering, creative,” and more predisposed for wanderlust, they also might be “utterly out of control.”"


So,what proportion of FGRVers have the DRD4 7R variant?
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Old 06-15-2015, 01:48 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lora View Post
Is traveling in our blood? Or, is it learned?
An interesting article at
The Wanderlust Gene: Why Some People Are Born To Travel
From an article referenced in above article:
"If an urge to explore rises in us innately, perhaps its foundation lies within our genome. In fact there is a mutation that pops up frequently in such discussions: a variant of a gene called DRD4, which helps control dopamine, a chemical brain messenger important in learning and reward. Researchers have repeatedly tied the variant, known as DRD4-7R and carried by roughly 20 percent of all humans, to curiosity and restlessness. Dozens of human studies have found that 7R makes people more likely to take risks; explore new places, ideas, foods, relationships, drugs, or sexual opportunities; and generally embrace movement, change, and adventure. Studies in animals simulating 7R’s actions suggest it increases their taste for both movement and novelty. (Not incidentally, it is also closely associated with ADHD.)"
Of course, the following statement, taken from the reference article, offers a grain of salt.
"According to LoPorto, while carriers of this genetic variant might be “incredibly resourceful, pioneering, creative,” and more predisposed for wanderlust, they also might be “utterly out of control.”"


So,what proportion of FGRVers have the DRD4 7R variant?
Lora,

DRD4 7R, yikes I must have it. I am a risk taker and must be predisposed to wanderlust (though not utterly out of control).

What ever the reason, extending to my childhood, I've always been curious about everything. The excitement this week is a new gas line being installed in front of our house, just a blast learning how it's done virtually without interrupting the supply to each house.

Thanks Lora, very interesting.
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Old 06-15-2015, 05:15 PM   #17
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Richard Grant's idea would certainly come as a surprise to all the nomadic folks who have lived throughout history. Also Cortez, Balboa, Columbus, the Vikings, and a raft of other explorer-type people.
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Old 06-15-2015, 05:25 PM   #18
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Mike and Lora,
I think it is the minority that are risk takers. I'm not sure about the genetic component and the possible predisposition.

I did look into ADHD at one time and found that the prevalence of ADHD is less in sunny climates like the Southwest. possibly a Vitamin D deficiency.
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Old 06-15-2015, 06:10 PM   #19
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Our traveling took on a whole new turn since we got our Oliver. I worked for TWA for 38 years and of course we got travel benefits, which we used, with some added stress, hoping you would get on the plane traveling standby. We traveled to Kenya, Pakistan, Switzerland, England to name a few, not to mention being removed from the plane while enroute through Dubai with no visa.
Those days are over and now it's time to see this beautiful country from ground level instead of from 30,000 feet. We are still somewhat limited on duration of trips, since we still have a very aged horse, cow, and cat to deal with. We are lucky to have neighbors that can take care of things while we are gone, and Carol pays very well.
All sorts of travel have their own level of stress, as well as good times
that make it worth it. We are fortunate that we could give our kids the experience of travel, and they are passing it on to their kids. Now we did do a lot of tent camping with the kids, but they chose not to take up with that. Oh well.
Heading for Glacier National Park as we speak.

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Old 06-15-2015, 07:12 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lora View Post
Is traveling in our blood? Or, is it learned?
An interesting article at
The Wanderlust Gene: Why Some People Are Born To Travel
From an article referenced in above article:
"If an urge to explore rises in us innately, perhaps its foundation lies within our genome. In fact there is a mutation that pops up frequently in such discussions: a variant of a gene called DRD4, which helps control dopamine, a chemical brain messenger important in learning and reward. Researchers have repeatedly tied the variant, known as DRD4-7R and carried by roughly 20 percent of all humans, to curiosity and restlessness. Dozens of human studies have found that 7R makes people more likely to take risks; explore new places, ideas, foods, relationships, drugs, or sexual opportunities; and generally embrace movement, change, and adventure. Studies in animals simulating 7R’s actions suggest it increases their taste for both movement and novelty. (Not incidentally, it is also closely associated with ADHD.)"
Of course, the following statement, taken from the reference article, offers a grain of salt.
"According to LoPorto, while carriers of this genetic variant might be “incredibly resourceful, pioneering, creative,” and more predisposed for wanderlust, they also might be “utterly out of control.”"


So,what proportion of FGRVers have the DRD4 7R variant?
Whoops, somebody has been spying on me??
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