What Traveling Makes Me Thankful For

Day 24: The view from the top. Lake Bled, Slovenia.
“Find a way to say yes to things. Say yes to invitations to new countries, say yes to meet new friends, say yes to learn something new.” – Eric Schmidt

What I am thankful for:

1. Living in a moment in history where passports and airplanes give us the opportunity to explore and discover this big, beautiful, complicated world we all share.

2. The incredible places, whether created by nature or crafted by human beings, that I got to see and experience firsthand.

3. The people I shared those experiences with and the profundity that everyone you meet is not a stranger, but a future friend. That everyone who crosses your path, no matter how brief the encounter — from the pizza worker in Budapest who loaned me a Hungarian forint to use the restroom to the café owner in Granada who let me use his wifi to find my hostel when I was lost to the Canadian couple who shared their life story on that train to Zagreb to the boys in Bled who showed me what it was like to grow up in Slovenia — will impact your life in some way. We are all doing our best to get by and we are all in this thing together.

4. For my smart phone. Without it, navigating the streets, finding certain places, downloading metro maps, booking hostels, booking bus tickets, booking train tickets, taking pictures, and getting in touch with new friends would have been considerably more difficult.

5. Having so many moments while traveling where my heart felt swollen because I felt so lucky to be doing what I was doing. And hoping other people make more time in their lives to feel this way, too. There’s always a million reasons not to do something, there’s never a right time. So just go for it, whatever it may be.

6. Getting to travel the world with some of my best friends.

7. Traveling solo, and absolutely loving it. Learning that I can be resourceful enough to navigate brand new cities and countries all on my own. And becoming confident enough to put myself out there and make new friends (which was easy, because everyone you meet while traveling is simply the coolest). And being especially proud and humbled by all of the solo female travelers I met during my trip. It was so awesome to see so many young women embrace their sense of adventure and independence. Girls kick ass.

8. For food and drinks. Such delicious food, and so many good drinks. And with that, learning how to say “cheers!” in 9 new languages. It’s amazing how meals and drinks can bring people from all walks of life together.

9. Having a wonderful home, family, and friends to always go back to when the adventure comes to an end. Having roots and being able to fly, I couldn’t ask for much more.

Until the next adventure.

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