Slow Travel and the Appeal of ‘Going Overseas’
What is it that we seek?
For certain, it is a country’s Modernism, History, Art, Culture, People, Dance and Music, Food and Beverage and scenic Vistas. But we cannot deny, either – because there is within us all a sense of Adventure – that travel, or Going Overseas, provides us with a cloak of Anonymity and therefore an opportunity to re-invent ourselves.
Some cities may house modern and artistic structures and buildings or public spaces and public transport systems due to their government’s more enlightened, future-oriented planning and support.
Where there has been continual human settlement we may be able to see (and touch) the remains of significant historic structures.
Within these ancient structures we may find works of art of outstanding quality in wood, stone, glass, ceramics, mosaics or applied paint.
A cultural tradition of tonally and rhythmically different dance and music may also have caused its people as a race to move to an intriguingly different ‘beat’. This can manifest itself in many interesting and rewarding ways.
The food of this culture will likely be exotically different – or maybe just superior. And we may choose to savour that foreign difference, too . . . . . . or not?
Locations we find ourselves in will often be the antithesis of our home surrounds and provide exotic or photogenic subjects and stunning vistas (and out comes the ‘phone or iPad)
We may find ourselves in a rustic village . . . click click . . .
Or among a small tribal community whose children beam curious and beatific smiles at us . . . click click . . .
We might laze on a sweep of white-sand beach fringed with coconut palms . . . click click . . .
To then bathe in the warm, turquoise waters of its lagoon . . . click click . . .
Or sail its offshore, islet studded waters . . . click click . . .
And we may find ourselves beside a tranquil lake and there gaze upon its backdrop of verdant, bush-clad contours perfectly mirrored under a clear blue sky . . . click click . . . Or at a silent lakeside we’ll pause to absorb the grandeur of distant alpine peaks set among a pristine wilderness and . . . . . . click click . . . . . . 3784 images and still 2GB to spare –
‘Ohau Road’, Collection of Peter Alsop, Alexander Turnbull Library NZ
Anonymity & Adventure
Travel provides an opportunity to be anonymous and to LET OUR HAIR DOWN.
Distancing ourselves from those who know us affords us an opportunity to behave, perhaps, in a more ‘liberated’ manner than at home.
“Why the hell not?”
Slow-Travel and Lingering Longer
In spite of air travel Planet Earth is still amazingly large with numerous diverse countries and inhabitants. Many travellers claim to be trying to see “the entire world” and are stacking up an impressive list of places they have been to. But they are unlikely to truly know each place or its people in any depth, if it all.
Quality not quantity – the Old bull says to the Young bull that is contemplating all the heifers in the paddock.
Far better to linger longer in each place: We gain a cumulative familiarity and a deeper understanding of its history, food, culture and people. “It is the people we meet on our travels that make the journey remarkable.”
And in return visits we can find golden moments.
To be greeted by a welcoming smile of recognition from resident folk you had previously befriended when travelling is both a boost to the ego, and heart-warming. If we are lucky, our acquaintance will offer to share with us the best of local mutual interests too.
“Travel destinations should not be just a ‘BUCKET LIST’ of names to be crossed off as we rush headlong to the next.”
Zamoa’s Places that Appeal
Based on food & beverage, architecture, history and vibe – in no particular order
Caceres & Trujillo – Spain
Zaragosa – Spain
Bilbao – Spain
Granada – Spain
Goa – India
Perugia – Italy
Sicilia – in toto
Vietnam – in toto
Singapore – in toto
Western Samoa – in toto
Porto – Portugal
Evora – Portugal
Larache – Morocco
Marrakech – Morocco