Everybody who travels loves to travel for the same reasons. These include seeing new things, tasting new flavors, listening to, or speaking other languages. It's our collective receptivity to stimulus that awakens our senses, not only opening our minds, but reinforcing the notion that the world is indeed diverse. It has a multitude of ways to tackle questions of community, socialization, infrastructure, environment and more.
As I now find myself in Iceland in preparation to trek a thin sliver of its neighbor country, Greenland, I am making rapid-fire impressions of what I see and hear, benefitting from the descriptive insights of my friend, Philippe, a Frenchman who has made this other-world island his home for the last 40 plus years. I am intrigued by how he describes the Icelanders. How they differ from other Europeans, how they and their language are a world onto themselves, needless to say conditioned by their history, climate, economy, relationship to the rest of the world. Can we not say this about every population on the planet? Yet our insatiable appetite keeps us hungry to learn.
We can gain so much through our observations, interpretations, guidebooks, but perhaps more than anything, what we complement with the insights of those who call our foreign destination home, the learning takes on a different dimension. Trusting yourself to the insights that come from an experienced insider offers a breadth of experience different than what we can have on a group tour. Your storyteller is important.