Sunday, November 19, 2006

We are the World

Aside from packing up my whole world and moving to the Last Frontier, the biggest adventure of my life so far was hands down studying abroad on Semester At Sea, which was three months of drunken debauchery on four continents and thousands upon thousands of dollars in student loans that aren’t even close to being paid off today. The problem with going on a kickass whirlwind global tour is that no one wants to hear about it once you come home. And I can’t really blame them. Who would want to hear someone begin every sentence with, ‘This one time in India’, or ‘When I was in Kenya’…? Obviously, I have a little bit more self restraint now and don’t do that all the time, but every now and then from out of no where a story slips out and some poor unsuspecting victim is assaulted with a comparison of their hilarious trip to the grocery store in search of the perfect spaghetti squash with my wild goose chase for Johnnie Walker Blue in Madras, India that ended with me getting felt up by a rickshaw driver. People on the receiving end of those assaults usually end up giving me the same looks I give the crazies on the Metro.

My younger sister is in college right now and has opted not to study abroad against my best older sister advice. I can now understand why Homer always chokes Bart. What the hell is she thinking? If there is one thing I am absolutely sure of, it is that at some point in her life, my sister will regret this decision. Or worse yet, she won’t. I’ve met people that don’t like to travel. Healthy, carefree, unattached people I went to school with, dated, or work with that have never been out of Wisconsin or who’s only traveling experience consisted of an all inclusive package deal to Disneyland or Vatican City or some other tourist destination where you are herded around like cattle by someone that speaks perfect English so you never have to interact with any local people. I just never thought my sister would be one of those people. I am always confused by those people. What exactly is it that scares people? Fear of the unfamiliar? Cost? Does the convenience of sticking to a routine outweigh the possibility of seeing someplace new? Whatever it is, I feel sorry for people so close-minded. And I know my sister is not one of those people. She loves to travel, she is just worried about the money. But it is worth every penny and I just don't know how to convince her of that. I’ll work on her over the holidays…

3 comments:

becca said...

how many countries have you been felt up in? Only three for me...I think.

becca said...

check that. Four. FIVE.

Em Cee McG said...

i'm with you, studying abroad was the best thing I ever did. hopefully leaving juneau and doing the peace corps will become the best thing I've ever done.