After years of perpetual travel, one becomes aware:
– "Hey, I was in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, for 10 days.!
– "Hey, I was in Japan for 10 days!"
– "Hey, I was in New York City for two days!"
And, I do not know crap ...
Over time, we become aware that we spent many a 10-day stretch in many a city. But as we become honest with ourselves, we realize that we could have read for 10 days on Wikipedia and achieved the same knowledge. Our opinions of these cities are dodgy, inaccurate at best, not to be trusted, yet still more accurate than reading.
First 10 Days "In Country"
Awareness of where we are and what we are doing as travelers starts after we transcend from reactive to proactive living. Instead of reacting to the new location, we have settled in and start to make proactive plans.
“Rose Colored Glasses” Time Period
Do not confuse yourself during the "Rose-Colored Glasses" time, the delusional time when we believe everyone loves us, we have arrived in paradise, and the world is perfect. This is the romanticized way travel writers write about travel destinations, more or less writing to sell something, normally a tour or hotel room.
This time can last for up to one year, or until the first time one of the locals cheats you or lies to you. Try to learn about "Willful Blindness," the Rose-Colored Glasses time period is related to this concept.
Why is awareness of the first 10 days important to travel strategies?
In the first 10 days, there is a glee, an excitement, an endorphin rush. We are intoxicated with the new destination. Our mind is engulfed in the addictive rush of travel. This is the addiction to travel, this the time we seek as travelers.
Yet, often people, business travelers, organizations, missionaries and even the United States Marines believe they are capable of thinking clearly. We are in reaction mode; our mind is still catching up with the overload on new sensations. We are over-stimulated. What a great feeling, like never ending love making!
Making decisions while feeling all aglow like this is risky.
Solution to Rose-Colored Glasses Thinking
If you are only going to be in-country for less than 10 days, then make up a list of things to do and stick to it, especially if you are here for business travel.
The best solution is to just hang out, kick back, and allow the 10 days to pass. Try to keep our drinking binges to a minimum. Allow our minds to absorb, think, and enjoy this time. If we can go slowly and be patient, we can slowly move into a new reality; we can say:
– "We are in New York City."
– "We are in Japan."
– "We are in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil."
Thus fully aware, our minds are not overwhelmed.
Buy a home, renting an apartment, making decisions to get married, and acting on all the other romantic notions we have comes somewhere after the 10 days and the Rose Colored Glasses have been removed.
When you truly lose respect for a few of the locals, have made a few enemies, and know which parts of the city to avoid, then maybe you are aware enough to know that even on the best day, we travelers gamble on fools’ luck – We live under lucky stars.
Andy Lee Graham ... somewhere over the rainbow
I learned early that the best way to see, learn and understand where you have traveled is to set up a good itinerary, research the many things to see and do in the areas you plan on going to and then start cutting it down to the best that you think are the best. Make a list that is short enough to actually enjoy not tire out.
Then be sure to spend more than 1 or 2 days in the area. Relax don't run every where.
Also what many don't do is is say, "Hey, this place is worth more time." Then spend more time there and cut another stop out.
Finally realize if you are a real traveler you can always return to see what you have missed.
Do not become "If this is Monday I must be in Belgium" syndrome.
Relax and enjoy.
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