I have been to eleven different countries out of my fourteen years of living. I have gotten to see and experience how different people from different cultures live, and I have reflected the lifestyles of others into my own life.
My dad often goes on business trips to other countries and cities, and he takes our family sometimes. Some places we have gone, like Prague and France, I was too young to appreciate, and I wish that I could have had a more thorough memory of them. Other places, like Greece and Spain, I visited recently and have a greater understanding of the culture and tradition behind these places.
Going to a new country is like landing in a scavenger hunt. There are so many treasures to find, things to see, places to go, food to try–the list goes on. Each country has a rich and unique history that is impossible to consume in a matter of two to three weeks. Thousands of wars, deaths, and discoveries all packed in to a single place. The food is different, the language is different, and the view is different. I feel like these differences have expanded my cultural knowledge of different places.
Australia gave me a sense of contentedness and beauty. It was the last full family vacation we have had to date. Peering over the Sydney bay, I felt at peace, as if nothing in the world were wrong. The moonlight Opera House looming over the ocean sang songs in my head, covering the sounds of waves crashing at the shoreline and the quiet background chatter of the adorable Australian accents. The serene scenery was painstakingly beautiful and had made me ponder about my present place in the world.
Greece made me realize the amount of history behind certain places in the world. The modern buildings mixed in with the ancient works of architecture were awe-inspiring. Most of all, I realized how close-knit everything was in their world. Streets were narrow, and houses barely had any gaps in between. Did this make them closer together as a community? It was a completely different world compared to America. To me, their language sounded like a nonsensical, foreign way of communication. Greece’s history has made me ponder about my past and how insignificant it will seem in the future.
Only now have I realized that the world is huge, and not many people are significant. There are trillions of distinct people that all live different lives, that all go through various struggles. Each person longs to find his or her own place in the world and become of importance. With each separate person thinking he or she is important, there is not one single person that is significant over another. We are all human beings; we are all the same. We all function as parts of a whole.
These travels have enriched my life, have taught me valuable life lessons, and have given me a sense of the past, present and future. I wish to discover more places on my own when I am older to further enhance my understanding of the people and world around me.