On to a New Adventure

it is finally happening.

i’m setting out onto a new adventure! something totally different from anything i’ve ever done before.

where am i going?

taiwan.

what will i be doing?

volunteering by helping kids learn english.

how long will i be there?

a little over eleven months.

it’s hard to believe, isn’t it? even for me it is hard to believe.

if you know anything about me, you know that i love to travel. you might have even seen my post about that. this time will be different though. this won’t be like the missions trip i went on or all the vacations i’ve taken to foreign countries. this time, i’ll be permanently living there.

the idea of living in a foreign country over nine thousand miles away thrills and terrifies me at the same time.


well, it has been awhile since i started writing this post. and believe it or not, i am in taiwan.

it hasn’t even been that long and i feel like i’ve been here for weeks. so much has happened in such a short amount of time it just doesn’t feel real.

i’m still dealing with some jet lag (for some reason, i just can’t seem to sleep in at all.). the number of different kinds of food that i’ve had here probably number more than the different kinds of food i’ve had over my entire life.

okay, maybe that’s a bit of an exaggeration. but still, almost everything that i have had here is something different.

in all honesty, it has been a bit overwhelming. there is so much to take in. too much. i mean, it is good. great even! but it is a lot.

maybe this is what culture shock is. in all my travels, i have never experienced culture shock so i don’t know. maybe this is what it feels like though.

jet lag doesn’t help, but either way, i’ve felt consistently exhausted. there have been multiple times that i’ve zoned out or nodded off during the day. (i have had so many embarrassing moments.) and my sleeping habits often don’t leave feeling well rested.

i still go in and out of feeling so excited and loving it here to feeling absolutely terrified and thinking i am crazy.

askdjhflsadkjflaksjhfekjshldf.

there are so many feelings and thoughts and things going through my head right now. i can’t really process it all.

but i’m doing alright. things are going well. i’m learning so much and having fun while i’m at it. i know there will be hardships, but i i think this year will see a lot of growth in me too. in the end, i think it will all be worth it.

hoping to lighten your burden,

gabi

have you ever experienced culture shock? or have you ever lived abroad for a extended period of time? let me know!

Why I Love to Travel

if traveling is a passion, it is definitely one of my biggest passions.

i’ve discovered this passion only in about the last year, but it has unexpectedly blossomed so much in that small amount of time.

i don’t think there has been a moment in this past year that i haven’t had my next trip planned or my next flight booked. in just this year i’ve been to more places than i can count on one hand, possibly two hands.

i love traveling. but why do i love it?

i have so many answers to this question. so many it’s probably ridiculous. but let me just begin.

the people.

every single person is different. and that factor becomes increasingly more noticeable when traveling a far distance. i love people. i love engaging them and hearing their stories. each person has a unique story. they each have their own struggles and hardships. some people one meets turn into longlasting friendships, while other people one meets only in that instance. still, even that one instance can make an impression and leave memories of it to last for who knows how long.

the stories.

since we were already on about how each person has their own story, let’s discuss stories. people’s stories are incredible things. they can inspire, encourage, and motivate. they can also teach important life lessons. of course, if we’re truthful, they can also do harm. but that is often not the case.

more than other people’s stories, one creates their own stories when traveling. i have so many stories from traveling. some are scary. some are funny. while others are just really neat once-in-a-lifetime kind of stories. stories like that can’t ever be replicated. that becomes your story and anyone else’s who shared it with you. nothing exactly like that will happen again.

the destination.

of course, a big part of traveling is going to see “the place.” there are trips that people do with no destination in mind (those are cool too) but usually people have some kind of destination in mind.

i love going to different places because no place is exactly the same and in most cases they are drastically different. from rocky beaches to sandy beaches to no beaches at all. from mountains to hills to land that is flat as far as the eye can see. from ancient art to medieval art to romantic art. from gothic architecture to baroque architecture to neoclassicism architecture. the list goes on and on. each is unique and fascinating in its own way.

the culture.

personally, culture is one of the most important reasons that i love to travel. people live such different lives. going to different places really shows that. what do people spend the most time doing? what is most important to them? how do they spend their free time? what do they believe? all these questions and more give one just a glimpse into their worldview and the lifestyle that they lead.

seeing different cultures makes me so grateful and thankful for what i have. i have many freedoms that i easily take for granted, but when i see other cultures i have more of an appreciation for them. it gives me an awareness. in other cases, i find myself wanting to acquire different practices from different cultures into my own life. there are good and bad things within every culture. not one is perfect.

the food.

let me just admit it right here and now. i am a foodie. i love food. food is always a priority for me wherever i go. i’m always ready to try a different kind of food (unless it is bugs, not sure i’ll ever be ready to try that). trying people’s food is a great conversation starter. you can get to know people and start to learn about their culture. there is a lot to learn from people by the food that they make.

if food is a way into a person’s heart, it certainly is true for me. there are so many different kinds of food out in the world. spices and flavors that i have never heard of, much less actually tried. i can only hope to try them when and where i can.

i am sure that i could come up with many more reasons as to why i love to travel, but i’ll stop here. if you made it this far, i applaud you!

hoping to lighten your burden,

gabi

do you love to travel? what are some of your most important reasons for traveling? i’d love to hear from you!