How Traveling Changed My Life

Once you are away from home, all by yourself with short list destinations to go; a change is being enforced into your life.

Traveling educate you more than any education platforms can do, you can read thousands of news about poverty but nothing will ever make you understand the concept of poverty like being in one or witnessing other people story that are currently in that position, you can read about how beautiful Lake Toba is but nothing compared the magic when you are sitting on a boat sailing around that massively beautiful lake, you can read about how tasty the foods of West Sumatra are but nothing compared the blissful when you’re sitting across the giant clock “Jam Gadang” eating a delicious portion of Padang’s Satay with the original sauce the same family has been made for over 65 years, you can read about the diversity of herbs and food specialities from South Sumatra, but nothing beats the experience when you are able to sit by the Ampera Bridge and enjoy a delicious bowl of Tekwan or Pempek.

Also, you can read a lot about culture and how it’s beautiful though when you experience it, it can be scary, challenging and exciting at the same time. Like how in Nias you have to be able to jump across 2,5 meters stone before people can admit that you’re an ‘adult’. Imagine how hard it is for us, kids that grow up in the city; we don’t need any challenge in our life to validate us whether we can or we can’t carry adultery responsibilities on our shoulder when the fact is — maybe we do need validation? Ah, who knows.

Traveling changed my life the moment I know that my life is more than just going to school, work, got a promotion, buying a house, cars, making family and be rich. It turned out, the things that adults never tell you, teachers never teach you are the things that matter the most in your life.

Traveling, trying all food palettes, talking to a stranger just because your flight got delayed for 4 hours, talking to a stranger just because you can, getting dirty by jumping off a brown river like all the other kids do everyday in a small village, hunt a deer, picking vegetables, understand — not just the theory — on how to grow spinach, rice, part of meat.

Also, traveling leads me to so many life struggles people are surviving for that makes my misery look very tiny and not even a problem. I love to go to the orphanage or foster houses, simply because I love kids and it’s always a good thing to keep yourself around kids. The stories I heard are saddening, entertaining, disheartening and appealing. Some kids know how they ended up there, some don’t. Those that knows why, a dozen stories — her father is an abusive alcoholic, his mother is a prostitute that always come home with bruises in her body and no money, the worst was there are kids that just born to die — their moms was positive AIDS during the pregnancy causing them having positive HIV.

Traveling really is an eye-opening journey for us, not just because of the good things but also because of the bad things in life. You feel luckier, happier and better and also you learn about compassion, tolerance, empathy and it humbles your being as a human.

There are 7 billions population of human on earth, everyone will deliver you a different story from where you can learn. You won’t believe the magic of comfort and letting someone just be themselves until you try to do it.