Chicken or Fish

Algeria fish market

My flatmate is agonizing about picking the right travel destination for her three month sabbatical in Asia. Should she go to India, get yoga teachers certificate and then travel to Cambodia. Or may be she should get the yoga certificate in Bali first and then travel to Burma. And what about Thailand and Vietnam. So many choices, the plan changes weekly (daily).

So I tried to come up with a good metaphor for her dilemma and this one seemed fitting. Choosing travel destination is like choosing fish or chicken for dinner. Some days you choose chicken, other days you’d go for fish. When you’ve had fish 3 days in a row, you’re craving some roast chicken and vice versa. Both are good choices, it all depends. There is no one correct choice. You mix and match, depending on situation and what you feel like doing. Same with travel. You can have amazing experiences in many different locations, but whether you actually experience the location at it’s best is up to you. You can have horrendous time in the same locations.

Let me illustrate the point with chicken. You can buy 1kg of cage chicken for 5.99 that is pumped with steroids, chicken that never saw daylight, never tasted grass and probably never really sat down in it’s short & miserable life. You can deep fry it in reused sunflower oil and serve with soggy cold chips. It’s dinner, it’s food, no arguing about it. But will you enjoy it, is it good for you, is it good for environment? Hell no.

Alternatively you can buy grass fed free range chicken for 15.99 that has tasted real bird food, roamed around looking for things to pick and otherwise been pretty chickeny. It is still being bread for food, but at least it was raised in sustainable manner. You can roast this deliciousness with oregano and eat it with steamed broccoli. Now you have something that is good for you & good for environment (well, less bad). But it’s still chicken. If people ask you, what you had for dinner, in both instances you can say chicken.

Now imagine that Thailand is like chicken. You can catch a charter flight to Phuket, stay in all inclusive 3 star hotel chain, sit by the pool all day, go see ping pong show at night and then get blind drunk and crawl back to hotel. Or you can choose to stay in a secluded Airbnb in Ko Phi Phi, go hiking and exploring the island, buy a fish on the way back from local fisher man. Cook it wrapped in banana leaves, then go watch sunset by the beach and play guitar. These both are Thailand’s that people experience every day, but which one you choose is up to you.

Next time, when you can’t decide where to go, remember that it’s only Chicken or Fish, just make sure you get the sustainable kind and you’ll be fine. Enjoy!